I have a passion for collecting vintage Star Wars merchandise from the late 70's. Action figures, comics, trading cards etc - anything related to the first Star Wars movie. But why only until 1980? It's not that I don't love The Empire Strikes Back and beyond (I really do), but there is something about that first wave of Star Wars mania that really grips me, back when it was all fresh and exciting...

Saturday, February 25, 2012

The Star Wars Album

In November 1977, Ballentine put out this 75 page Star Wars Album featuring tons of color and black and white photos from the movie and behind the scenes shots. The contents seems to fall into three sections, this first of which is a look at the influences on the movie. Everything from early sci-fi like H. G. Wells to Flash Gordon, robots in movies (i.e. Metropolis and Forbidden Planet), comedy duos like Laurel and Hardy, westerns that influenced the character of Han Solo and the whole cantina scene, monster movies and Errol Flynn swashbucklers are referenced. I like this bit as it's easy to think of Star Wars as its own entity nowadays rather than the throwback to old fashioned adventure serials it was originally intended to be.

The second section is a breakdown of the movie's plot accompanied by many pictures.

The final part of the book is devoted to behind the scenes stuff with articles, pictures and concept art.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Topps Trading Cards: Series 2

Series 2 here (#66 - 137) with the red borders.

Most of the backs of the cards feature either 'Movie Facts' or 'Actor's Profiles'.

Two jigsaw puzzles can be put together from the backs of certain cards; a Sandperson and good ol' Chewie.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Famous Monsters of Filmland #142

It's been a long time since I blogged. Things have been chaotic but the good news is that a new job = an increased income so I have hunted down a few items I'll be taking a look at over the next few weeks.

First up is this issue of Famous Monsters of Filmland from April 1978 featuring the Dark Lord of the Sith himself on the cover. This was the 20th anniversary issue of the magazine that began in 1958 and it's a whopper of an issue at 132 pages.

Star Wars had been released nearly a year previously and was still a hot topic in many magazines. FM takes a look back at the movie in an article entitled 'Lord Darth Vader: Badnik or Merely Misunderstood?' which, (well ahead of its time), points out that he may not be such a bad dude after all.

Being the 20th anniversary issue, a ton of film stars and film makers wrote in and sent signed photos wishing FM all the best. Here's one from Lucas himself and appears to be a behind the scenes shot from the movie.

There's also an abundance of Star Wars related ads including a fantastic one for the Kenner figures which I've never seen before.