Posts Tagged ‘Interviews’



Who Let the AT-AT Out?

StarWars.com Team | March 11, 2009


(Photo by Nick Drummond)

We’ve all played with our Star Wars toys, lost in our own magical world. But when Manchester-based photographer Nick Drummond plays with his AT-AT, it becomes less of an assault vehicle for the Empire and more like a family pet.

His whimsical photos of his pet AT-AT going through the cat door, frolicking in the snow and dancing in front of the fireplace are a hit with fans. Starwars.com chatted with Drummond about his photos and why leaving a water dish out for your AT-AT isn’t as odd as it sounds.

What made you decide to take candid photos of your AT-AT in action?
One of my nephews is 6, and as much into Star Wars as I am, so I decided to give him and his brother my old Star Wars toys so they would be played with again. My collection is over 25 years old but certainly beyond ever being a collector’s item. They were “well loved” by me as a child.

I took a few photos before I handed everything on and noticed that the AT-AT was very photogenic. As it was getting on for Christmas I took a few more shots hoping to make one into a puzzle for a present. I was much happier with the results than I expected and the ideas just haven’t stopped yet. Turns out my nephew already has an AT-AT, so I get to keep ATilla.


(Photo by Nick Drummond)

Why do you think AT-ATs make such great pets?
A few reasons:
- hair-free (unlike a Wookiee)
- very obedient (although they will dig around in wardrobes)
- good guard dog (would you break into a house with an AT-AT in it?)
- very photogenic (much better at keeping still than our cat)

Which is your favorite of all the AT-AT photos you’ve taken?
I think the one where ATilla and Ringo (our cat) are playing on the floor is my favorite so far. I was just so happy that they both got their poses right at the same time. I’d previously tried to get Ringo into the cat flap photo but at that point they still weren’t getting along.

Check out the full set of photos here:
AT-ATs: Not just for Xmas

WonderCon 2009: R2-D2 Builders

StarWars.com Team | March 5, 2009

R2-D2 goes where the action is, so it shouldn’t be surprised that he and his droid pals invaded this year’s WonderCon as usual. Fans ran up and hugged, kissed, patted and posed with everyone’s favorite astromech droid. Those lucky attendees who wanted the ins and outs of droid building got a special treat with the “R2-D2 Droid Building Basics” panel on Saturday.

R2-D2 builders Chris James, Ryan Goff, Steve Simmons, and David Calkins shared their experiences and demonstrated working droids. They chatted about materials, tools needed, basic electronics, and radio control information to make your own Artoo beep, move and save the day.

Special guest Don Bies, former ILM model maker and Star Wars Episodes II and III droid wrangler also showed up to encourage fans to channel their inner Anakin (the good one, not the baddie).

Starwars.com chatted with R2-D2 builder Chris James about what it feels like to be daddy to his own R2-D2.

Can you describe what the R2-D2 Builders group is all about?

We’re a loosely organized international group of fans who love to build droids and share them with the world. Founded in 1999, the club has continually striven to develop resources to allow others to accurately reproduce their own astromech droids. We know have almost 8,000 members, but I would say there’s closer to 500 active builders at any one time. We make all sort of astromechs, not just R2-D2, but that’s were our roots are. Some of you may have also seen R2-KT (R2KT.com); she was build by members of the club.

What tips did you give would-be builders at your WonderCon panel?

It’s hard to cover much in an hour, but we try and give an overview of what can be done, demo our droids, and cover the tools, different materials and skills needed to get started.

The four top tips are always — planning, patients, do lots of research, and know your limitations. Without following these basic tips you can quickly make some expensive mistakes. Oh! And the fifth tip — Don’t try stuffing the electronics from a Hasbro Interactive Droid in a life-size Artoo. You don’t want a 200 lb droid running you over.

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Star Wars Retold From Bits and Pieces

StarWars.com Team | January 14, 2009

Everyone has at least one friend who has seen parts of the Star Wars original trilogy but can’t quite tell you every plot point in order. Joe Nicolosi recorded his friend Amanda as she retells the story from the tiny amount she’s seen with hilarious results. Starwars.com chats with Joe about why he decided to illustrate his friend’s retelling of Star Wars.

What made you decide to record your friend Amanda about her ideas of what happened in the Star Wars trilogy and then illustrate it in video form?
Amanda seemed very confident in her knowledge of the Star Wars saga despite never having watched any of the Star Wars films. That was the first good sign. When we sat down to watch them, she started telling me what she thought the plots were going to be, so I told her to hold steady while I went to get my voice recorder. Aside from watching the original trilogy in a single sitting, that was the best decision I made all day.

What was the funniest part of the retold story for you?
The bit where she thought that Chewbacca was a mutated Ewok is the highlight for me. It’s the farthest thing from accurate in the whole video, and it implies that she’s given the subject some real thought. Like she had seen pictures of both and added them up together in her own mind and created this backstory of Chewbacca being ostracized from his own race and then guilted into helping the Ewoks. That’s just good drama.

WATCH VIDEO: Star Wars Retold From Bits and Pieces

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My Little Chewie and Han Solo

Bonnie Burton | January 14, 2009


(photo and art by Mari Kasurinen)

Laugh it up Little Pony! Just when you thought Chewbacca wouldn’t get any cuter, artist Mari Kasurinen gave Chewie a My Little Pony makeover. Starwars.com chats with Mari about her Star Wars-My Little Pony mashup art.

What kind of art do you do?
At the moment my art is mainly considered as Pop Art — a genre of art that uses elements of popular culture. In my art I find my inspiration from movies, music and comics, mainly from the ’80s
and ’90s. For my My Little Pony customs I choose characters which I find to be icons and phenomenons of their time.

Why did you decide to make a My Little Pony version of Chewbacca?
I’ve been a Star Wars fan as long as I can remember. I grew up with the “old trilogy” and I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one! I find that Star Wars was a huge phenomenon back then and continues to be it even to this day. One of my goals is that I capture all of my favorite characters from Star Wars into My Little Pony customizations. Chewie is one of my favorites and he was “next in line.” Before him I did Darth Vader, Princess Leia, a stormtrooper, Boba Fett and Han Solo. The list goes on and yet I’m not even halfway there!

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Star Wars: Live on Stage!

StarWars.com Team | December 19, 2008

Long, long ago in a galaxy far, far away…an epic space drama unfolded to the delight of children of all ages. This December, Dark Room Productions proudly fold it back up to present, for eight performances only in San Francisco, STAR WARS: Live on Stage!

A deliciously evil empire. A heroic rebel alliance. Cool laser battles! Lightsaber duels! Awesome zero-gravity dogfights! And a $100 special effects budget! It’s everyone’s favorite, classic blockbuster performed with a very small block.

Starwars.com chats with STAR WARS: Live on Stage! Director Jim Fourniadis who also happens to be the Creative Director of the Dark Room Theater and adoptive father to Maggie “the cute French Bulldog, our mascot, who is still mad at me for making her wear a little Princess Leia costume on opening night.”

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LEGO Star Wars Nativity

StarWars.com Team | December 16, 2008


(photo by Larry Lars)

This holiday season show off your creativity and the Christmas spirit by making your own Star Wars-themed nativity scene. Check out this LEGO Star Wars Nativity made by fan Larry Lars who has a few tips of his own for others who want to make one as well.

What made you decide to make a nativity scene from LEGO Star Wars figures?
I made the scene to be my entry in a contest held by a SW LEGO fan site FBTB.net. Limited to only a baseplate with 12×12 studs you’re supposed to combine Christmas and Star Wars and hopefully show your creativity and building skills. This idea came to me when trying to think up a reason, for the amount of different characters I wanted to have, to actually have a meeting on such a small space.

What is your favorite part of the nativity scene?
The twins of course. I also really like how the stable and the star tricks you into thinking it is the traditional setup before you take a closer look.

Any inside jokes in it that fans will appreciate?
The characters, besides the main family, are chosen for the most variety and Star Wars feel. But with this combination of characters from different movies and with the weight of the nativity story there’s going to be some interesting details to think about. Why so many evil ones? Who is the trooper on the roof? and so on. I think the biggest appeal for fans is going to be the depiction of the Skywalker family together in a moment they were bound to never have.

Any advice for fans who want to make their own Star Wars nativity scene?
Try to find a balance in the scene. I think you need to have a few things that really connects to the traditional scene. You have to know when to stop adding clever Star Wars references. And that can actually be kind of difficult.

Get a closer look here:
LEGO Star Wars Nativity (Flickr)

Yoda Sketchbook Portraits

StarWars.com Team | October 16, 2008


(Yoda sketchbook art by Paul Hornschemeier)

How many different ways are there to draw Yoda? Fantagraphics Web Editor Mike Baehr found out when he began asking his favorite comic book artists — Daniel Clowes, Lynda Barry, Tony Millionaire, Adrian Tomine, Gilbert Hernandez, Craig McCracken, Mary Fleener, and many others — to draw his favorite Jedi Master. Starwars.com chats with Mike about his favorite, and some of the weirdest, portraits of Yoda.

Why did you decide to start a Yoda sketch book? How did you get the idea?
I actually stole the idea from my Fantagraphics co-worker Jacob Covey. We were working at Comic-Con in San Diego last year as exhibitors and Jacob started a theme sketchbook based on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which was a formative series for him as a young comics lover. He was having so much fun collecting sketches that I decided I wanted to get in on the excitement too. I wanted to choose a theme that was equally formative for me, and nothing sparked my young imagination quite the way Star Wars did, so that was a no-brainer. I settled on Yoda pretty quickly because what he represents is so positive. Plus I’ve learned that, since Yoda is so iconic, artists can take a lot of creative liberties with him and he’s still recognizable, so I get a lot of great variety and creativity in the sketches.

How many drawings are in the book so far?
Right now 102, in two volumes plus a couple of loose drawings my friend David did and gave to me. Not bad considering I just started it last year, but I have a bit of an unfair advantage working in the comics industry.

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Obama Jedi Art by Suckadelic

StarWars.com Team | October 16, 2008


“Brand New Funky President” custom art by Suckadelic

Artist Suckadelic Shows His Obama Support Star Wars-Style

With the presidential campaign heating up, there’s bound to be a few Star Wars fans out there wanting to show their support for their favorite candidate in their own creative way. Artist Suckadelic gives his take on presidential hopeful Obama with this one-of-a-kind art piece for the Jailbreak Toys “Art + Action = Obama ’08″ art show. Star Wars Blog chats with him to get the low-down on this cool piece of Star Wars political art.

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Chipmunk Trooper Whisperer

StarWars.com Team | October 14, 2008


(Photo and Chipmunk Wrangling by Chris McVeigh)

At first glance, Chris McVeigh’s photo of a trooper action figure riding on top of a chimpunk looks like a well-done Photoshop mashup. But remarkably, Chris placed the action figure on a live chipmunk who hangs out in his backyard. He convinced the chipmunk he named Billy, not by use of a simple Jedi mind trick, but with almonds!

Here’s the full story about Billy the Chipmunk and his trooper pal:
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I’d Rather Kiss Domo-bacca

StarWars.com Team | October 14, 2008


(image by Spencer Brinkerhoff III)

When Star Wars artist Spencer Brinkerhoff III featured this awesome Star Wars mashup of Domo Kun and his friends, we couldn’t help but wonder why he was inpsired to make Domo-bacca.

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