After five incredibly successful Celebration tattoo events, Marc Draven and I are incredibly excited to bring our Star Wars Tattoo Pavilion to European fans at Celebration Europe in Essen, Germany at the end of the month! We have a lot going on in our little area and we know that navigating your way around all the incredible Celebration events can be daunting. Trying to remember exactly what’s going on in every area is no easy feat, so to help make your Celebration tattoo experience the absolute best possible, we’ve put together this handy guide detailing all of the Star Wars tattoo-tastic goodness you can expect to find in Germany!
Archive for ‘Fans and Community’
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, we felt a great disturbance in German fandom when Star Wars Celebration Europe was officially announced during the closing ceremony of Celebration VI in Orlando, Florida.
After the excitement had died down, we tried to imagine what kind of consequences this announcement might have for us. As the hosting garrison of the 501st Legion and the leading force of German Star Wars fandom, we felt obliged to make sure everybody involved in Celebration Europe has a really good and enjoyable time in Germany.
During the last couple of months we realized that this goal is a really ambitious one. Because even though the German garrison is really experienced in organizing up to 300 events a year with up to 50,000 visitors, Celebration Europe will be one of a kind, that’s for sure. So how do you prepare for such an event?
Actually, I have to admit, that headline is borrowed from Don Bies, droid wrangler at Lucasfilm during the filming of Episodes I – III. The same line was used for his preparations for the prequels.
However, on a much more hobbyist scale, it also applies to any R2 Builder in the world.
Building an astromech is not a quick job, as there’s no “complete kit” available, and it can take years to get to a point where you can say your droid is finished. And once there you soon discover glitches. Things break, the middle foot rattles, the dome turns too slow, etc.
Creative is a word you can apply to most Star Wars fans. You just have to walk around a Celebration event for a few minutes to see how enthusiasm for the universe can be funneled into costumes, dioramas, crafts, and LEGO creations. I know I’m not the only one who walks around the LEGO booth in awe, marveling over the number of tiny bricks that go into a life-size statue of Boba Fett. However, my favorite part is walking around the fan-made creations and seeing the time and love poured into all manner of spaceships, signs, and sets.
In the title of her June 14 post, Lucasfilm’s Jennifer Heddle used the term “worlds collide” that prompted me to comment. Check it. I wrote that “worlds in collision” was to be in the title of this post, musings on Ben Stevens and Philip Wise’s Dallas Comic Con, a hugely successful event in May that drew 26,000 fans. Since I am blogging, as opposed to doing straight reportage, may I digress for a moment?
When Worlds Collide is a classic sci-fi film referenced in “Science Fiction/Double Feature,” the opening number of The Rocky Horror Show. (Yes, I worked on that musical in 1974-76 while it ran at The King’s Road Theatre in London’s Chelsea, but that is another story.) At the time, I knew EVERY line in the show — “But when worlds collide, said George Pal to his bride, I’m gonna give you some terrible thrills.” Worlds in Collision was a controversial book written two decades earlier by Immanuel Velikovsky. I read it in the early ’70s. So there’s my riff on Jen’s allusion.
I had just turned seven when the original Star Wars came out in 1977. I don’t remember what channel of advertising made it through to me, but I was completely obsessed with Star Wars. I was counting the days until the movie came out and made my mom take me to the theater to see it on opening weekend.
I’ve been a Star Wars fan ever since my dad took me to see Return of the Jedi. It was the first Star Wars film I’d ever seen, as I was a bit too young for the others. Now I’ve got tons of action figures and collectables — and a costume, which I wear proudly as a member of the 501st. My wife introduced me to Disneyland and I became hooked; I ended up getting an annual pass and we still go often. Now we have two kids (one and three years old) that will be future Star Wars and Disney geeks. So from my point of view, the he pairing of Star Wars and Disneyland seems a natural fit.
During Disneyland’s 50th anniversary, my friend Britt (a photographer and lifelong Star Wars fan) and I were talking about the lack of Star Wars offerings at Disneyland compared to Walt Disney World; back then, Disney’s California park only had Star Tours, and The Jedi Training Academy hadn’t even opened yet. So taking a tip from Bats Day and other unofficial days at the resort, we decided to start a special day for Star Wars fans at Disneyland.
The influence of Star Wars on a generation of filmmakers is well-documented. But George Lucas’ galaxy far, far away has also inspired creators in other arts, including music. In Guitars and Lightsabers, a new series on the Star Wars Blog, musicians discuss the impact that Star Wars has had on their lives and their work. In today’s installment, Jason Shaw and Garrett Leister of HRVRD discuss what Star Wars means to them.
Jason Shaw: Few words have lasted as long in my life as “Do. Or do not. There is no try.” The first time I ever saw The Empire Strikes Back I couldn’t have been more than four or five years old and to this day, at the age of 29, I think I can close my eyes and recount every minute of that movie. As a child it impacted me with immense enchantment, yet as I carried that enchantment through my adolescence and teenage years I began to evaluate the huge weight that this movie carried with me. That one simple line of dialogue, “There is no try,” spoken by a small green “alien” with pointy ears probably rings in my ears every day of my life. I could literally apply those words to every worry, frustration, anxiety, or challenge I’ve ever had in my life. I’m actually certain that with every challenge I’ve had, the first image that popped into my head was Yoda looking at me with a blank gaze just waiting for me to do something productive and positive to better my situation.
The Dark Times of the mid to late ’80s had passed and as we entered the 1990s brighter times lay ahead for Star Wars fans — but at the turn of the decade, that was yet to become evident to the wider Star Wars public. While rumors continued to float around about the prequel trilogy there was little movement from Lucasfilm on the Star Wars front. Indeded, Lucasfilm had recently completed their Indiana Jones trilogy and were in a busy period, releasing Willow, Howard the Duck, and Tucker: The Man and His Dream. ILM had worked on a number of special effects smashes in the late ’80s including Star Trek IV, Ghostbusters 2, The Witches of Eastwick, and Back to the Future II and III, and LucasArts was fast building a solid reputation in the computer gaming industry via such smashes as Labyrinth, Maniac Mansion, and Secret of Monkey Island. It would appear that Lucasfilm had outgrown its reliance on the galaxy far, far away and developed an identity free of Jedi, Wookiees, and Wampas.
However, in the late ’80s artist Cam Kennedy and writer Tom Veitch pitched an idea to Lucasfilm, who in turn was offered it to Marvel Comics, the longtime publishers of Star Wars comics who had let the license lapse in 1987. Marvel turned it down, despite going so far as to releasing a print ad for the series and the project – Dark Empire – found its way into the hands of Milwaukee comics publishers Dark Horse, a relatively new face on the comics scene who had proven to be adept at handling movie licenses. The title would go on to be a smash hit for Dark Horse, coming out in late 1991 after another dipping of the toes into the Star Wars pool proved to be equally as successful.