The force is set to awaken again on 17 December (yes, the 17th – sorry world, but in Australia new movies always open on Thursdays), and the Star Wars Generation’s excitement is building exponentially with each passing day. Tickets have gone on sale yesterday for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and devoted fans are excitedly preparing for midnight screenings around the world.
It has been a decade since the last Star Wars movie was released in 2005, Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.
Unless you are from my generation and had that experience, it’s hard to explain what it was like to see the original Star Wars Episode IV, A New Hope at the cinema, as a teenager.
In 1977 Star Wars, the epic fantasy, sci-fi movie spectacular exploded onto movie screens on a scale never before seen. Together with its two sequels, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, Star Wars had become a cultural phenomenon and a legendary franchise, leaving a permanent imprint on popular culture.
The Star Wars Generation had spent many dinner parties over the past forty years or so debating which of the original Star Wars trilogy is the best, but we won’t enter into that debate today.
The pivotal scene from The Empire Strikes Back, where Darth Vader reveals to Luke Skywalker he is his father … and, as a small Star Wars trivia, the correct line is ‘No, I am your father,’ not ‘Luke, I am your father.’
The prequel trilogy released between 1999 and 2005, while creating a new generation of Star Wars fans, divided and largely disappointed the original Star Wars Generation. Many felt the prequels were over-engineered, almost childish in a sense, and lacked the grand emotionality and excitement of the original movies. But we all survived the experience …
• Star Wars mania is upon us
The continuing cultural significance of Star Wars is highlighted by the fact that every teaser, trailer and poster release for the latest instalment had become a news story around the world, and the casting of the film was the subject of an intense public debate, although for all the wrong reasons.
I was sufficiently bemused when earlier this week even the latest trailer for the movie had its own three teaser trailers:
Star Wars: The Force Awakens Trailer (Official)
One of my wild theories on why Mark Hamill is not seen in the trailer is that Luke Skywalker had … turned to the dark side like his father before him, and he is the mysterious new dark character.
My other wild theory is that we are all wrong, and he is in fact in the trailer – is he the hooded Obi-Wan Kenobi-type character who places a bionic hand on R2-D2 at 1:40?!
The suspense is killing me!
The appearance of the cast at Comic Con in July was a huge public relations success, which crystallised the return of our much-loved Star Wars heroes, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill.
When you reach a certain age, there are very few things that can make you feel like you are a kid again – Star Wars is one of those few things.
I am excited by the prospect of our beloved Princess Leia, Han Solo and Luke Skywalker returning to the big screen. And I will be in front of that big screen at midnight on 16 December 2015.