1. Despite playing famous space cowboy Han Solo in over two star wars films, actor Harrison Ford has never actually been to space.
2. James Earl Jones famously provides the voice for the infamous villain, Darth Vader. But did you know that the actor who played the body of Darth Vader, David Prowse, once provided the voice of James Earl Jones in a cartoon biopic of the actor’s life.
3. Sir Alec Guinness never auditioned for the role of Obi Wan Kenobi. In fact, he didn’t realize that he was even being filmed until 5 weeks into shooting. George Lucas had always wanted to work with the famed actor but thought his sci-fi epic would be below the standards of the acclaimed actor, so he never asked. Instead, he had characters dress up in costume, run up to him and speak their lines, all while being secretly filmed. Guinness was starting to think he was losing his mind as stranger after stranger continued to speak to him about things he’d never heard, calling him a strange name, so Lucas eventually came clean and told him the truth. Years later, Guinness told this story on a late night talk show. Up and coming comedian Steve Martin was in the audience that day and would later go on to write the blockbuster movie “Bowfinger” based on Guinness’ story.
4. According to the book The Making of Star Wars by J.W. Rinzler, George Lucas originally planned for Yoda to be played by an adorable monkey wearing a mask and carrying a cane.
5. A sandstorm changed a major scene in the space saga. Because they were filming in the desert, often times there would be sand storms and blowing dust. The crew were fortunate enough to be able to wear protective glasses, but the cast was unable to during shoots. In an early scene on Tatooine, Luke runs to his home and find his aunt and uncle dead. But in the original script he was supposed to find his Aunt and Uncle safe and sound, but during the shoot, a sand storm left actor Mark Hamill to be temporarily blinded and causing him to cry. George Lucas liked the shot so much, rather than re-shoot it, he decided to keep it and rewrite the scene around it, killing his family and thus giving Luke an even greater reason to leave his planet and fulfill his destiny.
6. Return of the Jedi almost had a very different ending. In a story development session for Return of the Jedi, George Lucas toyed with the idea that after Luke removes dying Vader’s helmet, he puts it on, proclaims “Now I am Vader” and turns to the dark side.
7. No stranger to musicals, Ewan McGregor wrote a song for his character, Obi Wan Kenobi, to sing in Episode 1. Reluctantly, Lucas obliged and the scene was filmed. However, it never saw the final cut as producers and Lucas agreed that it felt too out of place in a Star Wars film and worried fans would think making these sequels was a bad idea.. McGregor has stated there are no hard feelings toward Lucas for his song not making it into the film.
8. Matrix creators, the Andy and Lana Wachowski, say the concept of the Matrix came about when they pondered what Han Solo would be like in our world. They even named their lead character after him. Han Solo means ”The One” in German. Neo is referred to as ”the one” throughout the films. Also, Neo means ”One” in Dutch.
9. N’sync was almost in Star Wars The Phantom Menace. George Lucas filmed a scene with the boy band in it to appease his daughter who was a big fan of theirs, but he cut it.
10. Like The Only People Who Matter’s William Byrne, Liam Neeson was too tall for Star Wars.The sets for The Phantom Menace were only as tall as the actors, but they didn’t account for 6’4″ Liam Neeson. They had to rebuild all the door frames for Qui-Gon Jinn, which racked up an additional $150,000 in production costs.
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