It's hard to believe that, this May, Star Wars will officially be twice as old as I am. If it weren't for Star Wars, I may have never truly fallen in love with sci-fi and the art of filmmaking, and I may have had a completely different career. #StarWars changed my life, and 40 years later, it's still changing lives. Let's take a look at how it's changed the lives of its actors.
Mark Hamill As Luke Skywalker
Our reluctant hero, Luke Skywalker, was the first major film role for #MarkHamill, who previously starred in various TV episodes. After three films as Skywalker, Hamill went on to do voiceover work, famously starring as the voice of the Joker in Batman: The Animated Series. He will reprise his role as Skywalker in this year's Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
Best Quote: "I’m Luke Skywalker. I’m here to rescue you.”
Carrie Fisher As Princess Leia Organa
Leia Organa, leader of the rebellion and Princess of Alderaan, was #CarrieFisher's first major role as well. She went on to star in various films such as When Harry Met Sally and The Blues Brothers. In addition to acting, she's become an advocate for mental health after experiences with manic depression and drug addiction. Fisher appeared in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and her character appeared in last year's Rogue One: A Star Wars Story via CGI. Fisher tragically died last year of a heart attack, but her last appearance as Leia will be released posthumously in this year's Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
Best Quote: "Why, you stuck up...half-witted...scruffy-looking...Nerf-herder!"
Harrison Ford As Han Solo
Unlike Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher, everyone's favorite scruffy-looking Nerf-herder had appearances in film prior to Star Wars, most notably American Graffiti, directed by George Lucas. After Star Wars, Ford starred in films such as Blade Runner, as well as the Indiana Jones franchise, roles that he will reprise this year in Blade Runner 2049, and in 2019 with a fifth Indiana Jones film. He reprises his role as Han Solo in 2015's Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Alden Ehrenreich will portray a young version of the character in next year's Han Solo spin-off movie.
Best Quote: "It's the ship that made the Kessel Run in less than twelve parsecs."
Anthony Daniels As C-3PO
The only actor to appear in every Star Wars film, including Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, #AnthonyDaniels's first major acting role was as C-3PO in A New Hope. It remains one of only a handful of roles he's played in his career. Outside of acting, Daniels worked as an adjunct professor at Carnegie Mellon University. He is set to reprise the role of C-3PO in this year's Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
Best Quote: "We're doomed."
Peter Mayhew As Chewbacca
Star Wars' quintessential Wookie and undisputed Dejarik champion, Chewbacca, a.k.a. Chewie, was #PeterMayhew's first and only film role. He appeared as Chewie in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and will do so again in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Aside from numerous appearances at Star Wars fan events, Mayhew has written several books.
Best Quote: "AAARARRRGWWWH!"
Kenny Baker As R2-D2
#KennyBaker starred as R2-D2 in every Star Wars film except for last year's Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. He tragically passed away last year. Prior to his death, he appeared as R2 for the last time in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. R2-D2 is set to appear in this year's Star Wars: The Last Jedi, portrayed by Jimmy Vee.
Best Quote: "Bloop beep beep."
Alec Guinness As Obi-Wan Kenobi
Sir #AlecGuinness hosted an impressive acting resume prior to being cast as Obi-Wan Kenobi in A New Hope. In fact, he won an Academy Award for his role in The Bridge on the River Kwai. He was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for his role as Obi-Wan. Since Star Wars, Guinness has starred in various films up until his death in 2000, due to cancer. His voice, however, appeared in Star Wars: The Force Awakens through archival audio.
Best Quote: "These aren't the droids you're looking for."
Peter Cushing as Grand Moff Tarkin
#PeterCushing also had a rich character history prior to his role in Star Wars, having played the likes of Dr. Frankenstein, Van Helsing, Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Who. He appeared in a handful of films after Star Wars. Sadly, he passed away in 1994, but his character, Grand Moff Tarkin, was digitally recreated for last year's Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
Best Quote: "I think it is time we demonstrated the full power of this station. Set your course for Alderaan."
James Earl Jones As The Voice Of Darth Vader
Prior to Star Wars, Jones had several Broadway, television, and film credits to his name, including his film debut in Stanley Kubrick's Dr. Strangelove. Since Star Wars he's had roles in numerous films such as The Sandlot and as Mufasa in 1994's The Lion King, a role he's set to reprise in Jon Favreau's live-action adaptation. He's voiced Darth Vader in three Star Wars films, as well as Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
Best Quote: "No, I am your father!"
Which of these Star Wars actors do you think has had the most successful career?
Carrie Fisher's tragic passing shook Hollywood and Star Wars fans — relive some of her best moments in the video below:
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