Star Wars an American epic space opera franchise, centered on a film series created by George Lucas. It depicts the adventures of various characters “a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away”.
Let’s find out some amazing facts about it!
1. The franchise began in 1977 with the release of the film Star Wars (subtitled Episode IV: A New Hope in 1981), by 20th Century Fox, which became a worldwide pop culture phenomenon.
2. It was followed by the similarly successful sequels The Empire Strikes Back (1980) and Return of the Jedi (1983).
3. These three films constitute the original Star Wars trilogy (Episodes IV–VI).
4. A prequel trilogy (Episodes I–III) was later released between 1999 and 2005, which received a more mixed reaction from critics and fans in comparison to the original trilogy.
5. More recently, a sequel trilogy (Episodes VII–IX) began with the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015).
6. All seven films were nominated for or won Academy Awards, and were commercial successes, with a combined box office revenue of $6.46 billion, making Star Wars the fourth highest-grossing film series.
7. Additional theatrical films outside of the main saga include the animated Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008) and an upcoming series of anthology films, which will begin with the release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016).
8. The series has spawned an extensive media franchise—the Star Wars expanded universe—including books, television series, computer and video games, and comic books, resulting in significant development of the series’s fictional universe.
9. Star Wars also holds a Guinness World Records title for the “Most successful film merchandising franchise.”
10. In 2012, the total value of the Star Wars franchise was estimated at USD $30.7 billion, including box-office receipts as well as profits from their video games and DVD sales.
11. In 2012, The Walt Disney Company acquired Lucasfilm for $4.06 billion and earned the distribution rights to all subsequent Star Wars films, beginning with the release of The Force Awakens in 2015.
12. 20th Century Fox retains the physical distribution rights to the first two Star Wars trilogies, owning permanent rights for the original 1977 film and holding the rights to Episodes I–III, V and VI until May 2020.
13. Walt Disney Studios owns digital distribution rights to all the Star Wars films, excluding A New Hope.
14. The actor who played Obi-Wan Kenobi, Alec Guiness, thought of the Star Wars films as “fairy-tale rubbish”.
15. Despite this, he negotiated a deal to earn 2% of the gross box office receipts for the movies he appeared in, earning him over $95 million.
16. Harrison Ford was paid $10,000 for his performance in Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope.
17. Peter Cushing, who played Grand Moff Tarkin, found his costume boots so uncomfortable that he wore slippers during many of his scenes, and insisted his feet just never be in the shots.
18. The voice of Yoda is done by Frank Oz, who also happens to voice “Miss Piggy” from The Muppets.
19. Harrison Ford asked that Han Solo die at the end of Empire during the carbon freezing process … …but his request was denied by George Lucas.
21. The Sith were originally called “The Damned.” But a British band with the same name debuted in 1977 forcing Lucas to dub over the word “Sith” in post-production.
22. The Jabba Palace sequence in Star Wars: Episode VI – Return Of The Jedi involved 42 extras, 18 principal cast members, 10 puppeteers, nine mime artists, and 90 crew members… and it took a month to film.
23. One famous gold bikini that often wouldn,t behave itself – Carrie Fisher refused to use tit tape, meaning many sequences had to be reshot because of wardrobe malfunctions.
24. All the dialogue when Han is on the console talking to some of the commanders was all ad libbed. Harrison Ford deliberately didn’t learn the lines, so that it would sound more spontaneous.
25. Emperor Palpatine was originally played by an elderly female stand-in, with chimpanzee eyes superimposed over her face to make her look creepy.
26. The sound of the TIE Fighter engines is actually the sound of an elephant call mixed with the sounds of a car driving on wet pavement.
27. Steven Spielberg made a bet with George Lucas for a percentage of the Star Wars films, which has earned him millions of dollars since.
28. While shooting the scene in the trash compactor, Mark Hamill held his breath for so long that he burst a blood vessel in the side of his face. They had to adjust framing while shooting the rest of the scene to avoid showing the blemish.
29. Many of the buildings constructed to be used in shots of Tatooine are still standing in Tunisia. In fact, some of them are still used by locals.
30. Early concept designs for Episode III’s General Grievous imagined him as a child sitting in a floating chair; an idea that Lucas threw out because he didn’t think it would be taken seriously.
31. Luke’s line “I can’t see a thing in this helmet” was not scripted. Mark Hamill said this to Harrison Ford when he thought the cameras had stopped rolling. But, the filmmakers decided to leave the line in.
32. Luke Skywalker was originally going to be named Luke Starkiller, and retained the name up until the film begin shooting. Luckily, the name was never mentioned, so it was changed to Skywalker with little effort.
33. The starship that became the Blockade Runner seen at the beginning of Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope was the original design for the Millennium Falcon.
34. The Jawa language is based on a sped-up version of the Zulu language.
35. The language Greedo speaks is a South American language called Quechua.
36. The bounty hunter Bossk’s clothing is a recycled spacesuit from Doctor Who.
37. Mark Hamill was in a bad car accident before filming started on Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back, causing severe facial trauma. The scene in which Luke Skywalker is mauled by a Wampa was added to account for the scarring on his face.
38. Yoda was originally going to played by a monkey carrying a cane and wearing a mask.
39. Yoda actually has a first name! It was never revealed in the movies, because Lucas deliberately decided to leave him with just one name to enhance the air of mystery about him. (His full name was going to be Minch Yoda.)
40. It took as many as 10 puppeteers using both hands to operate Jabba the Hutt.
41. It took three different actors to portray Darth Vader. James Earl Jones (Voice), Sebastian Shaw (face), and David Prowse (body).
42. At one point, Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi was going to be called “Revenge of the Jedi” and there were actually trailers and posters produced with the original title.
43. No physical clone trooper outfits were actually produced for the films. Every clone trooper seen in the Star Wars films was created with CGI.
44. Samuel L. Jackson claims that the words “bad motherfucker” were engraved on the lightsaber he used in the Star Wars films.
45. The cow-like creature seen grazing in the fields behind Anakin and Padmé in Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones can be seen again as an asteroid later in the film.
46. Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader meets six of the nine diagnostic criteria for Borderline Personality Disorder, which is one more than is required to make the diagnosis.
47. Although Episodes IV and V were big hits, the studio refused to sign for Return of the Jedi…until Lucas drew out a merchandising plan that included more toy-friendly characters than Empire did.
48. “I’ve got a bad feeling about this” is spoken in every movie (or some variation of it).
49. The real mastermind of evil is not Darth Vader, but its master, Darth Sidious
50. All twelve members of the Jedi Council are Jedi Masters, except for Ki-Ad-Mundi, who is a Jedi Knight.
51. Carrie Fisher and Sissy Spasic both auditioned for the role of Princess Leia and “Carrie” from Stephen King’s Carrie at the same time. Fisher took Star Wars, as she was against the initial “nude” scene in Carrie.
52. A total of 19 different planets are shown throughout the films.