With Star Wars Episode VII just over a year away, it's perfectly natural to be hugely overexcited, to the point that your remastered Original Trilogy DVD (With the original edit included, obviously) is threatening to go on strike, your old school action figures are looking suspiciously well-used, and your significant other is threatening to leave you if you call them Lando one more time, just because they ate the last bagel.
Or, at least, that's what I'm telling myself.
Even if you've been driven slightly unhinged with anticipation, though, it's nigh on impossible to not be at least a little nostalgic for the giant pile of awesomeness that is the Star Wars saga. After all, it's a long wait till next December...
Fortunately, though, you're not alone. And, best of all, it's not just bagel-obsessed Moviepilot writers who're sitting around, wistfully reminiscing about Rancors, Tauntauns, and Salacious Crumb.
Some of your favorite celebrities are doing it too...
Here are five of my favorites:
1. Adam Driver Loves the Quieter Moments
Who, aside from playing a still-mysterious part in the upcoming Episode VII, is also clearly something of a Star Wars nerd himself. Asked by EW what his favorite memories of the original movies are, his response was...
"I always think back to the original movies and to those quieter moments where Luke is out in A New Hope, and there are the two suns setting, and it’s just such a quiet moment. It is the equivalent, basically, of a farm boy dying to get out of his small town and do something bigger. It’s those kinds of universal themes that ground this whole thing in space."
Which, hopefully, we'll soon be seeing him bring to life on screen. Seeing as he clearly really gets the series, though, that seems a safe bet:
"The thing about Star Wars that’s so good—sure there’s this huge [canvas]. It’s space, it’s a long time ago in a galaxy far away. That’s set up immediately. But in the midst of all those things, what has made those movies last so long is that they’re all grounded, which is something that is not so far off from every movie with huge universal themes of siblings and parents and betrayal and trust. That’s so generic and obvious, but it’s hard to balance those things."
Some Star Wars heroes have a very different set of memories of the films, though - since they starred in them. Some of the greatest come from:
2. Mark Hamill Loved Being Inside Tauntauns
Who, after all, doesn't just remember Star Wars - he lived it.
In his Reddit AMA back in January, Hamill fielded a whole lot of questions abut his time on the Star Wars set - but my personal favorites have to be his memories of Harrison Ford...
"I'd seen him in 'American Graffiti,' and I did the screen tests with him. We just fell into our character roles. Luke idolizes Han Solo, it was such a great role because Han was the cynic, he was the modern role in this fairly tale. It was just the right element in the stew for all the cynics in the audience. I just thought Harrison was fantastic, so perfect for the part. We fell into the role of mentor/student. They couldn't have made a better choice, and he can do no wrong. He's got a great sense of humor; it was fun to try to make him laugh."
...his thoughts on being inside a Tauntaun...
"Warm and cozy. I also got inside a bantha, those creatures that were outside the cantina. The inside of it was pasted over with newspapers and glue to give it substance, I thought, 'This is really odd.' I also got inside of Jabba, which was like a sauna bath, because it's like a big rubber enclosure. All the puppeteers had gone to lunch and I wondered what it's like in there."
...and, of course, his memory of keeping THAT secret about Luke's parentage...
"(Director) Irvin Kershner brought me aside, and said, 'I know this, George knows this, and you'll be the third person who knows. If it goes out we'll know you leaked it.' So I was terrified of being the one to ruin it. I remember when they screened it, Harrison turned around and said 'I didn't know that! Why the f*&^ didn't you tell me?!'
Some celebrity Star Wars fans haven't had any involvement in the saga, though (at least not yet...), but their memories aren't any less adorable.
3. Billy Boyd Couldn't Stop Watching
Now, Billy Boyd may have, many years after the Star Wars movies release, become a geek-legend in his own right as Pippin in the Lord of the Rings movies, but back in 1983, he was just a regular little kid. And his response to the release of Return of the Jedi couldn't have much cuter. As he told StarWars.com:
"I was in Butlin’s, which is like a holiday camp in Britain where you can kind of go with your family and whatever they pay, kind of everything’s free, they have rides and all that and you can just go on them because you’re in Butlin’s, so the cinema was free and the third movie was out and I would just go and see it every day."
The most adorable part though?
"I tried to get my mum to go in, but I’d just go in and sit myself if nobody wanted to see it because I loved it so much."
Which was, presumably, a major part of why Boyd still insists to this day that:
"I didn't want to be an actor, I wanted to be a Jedi...I liked the idea that you could pretend to be something, especially something that is quite good now because, as you say, it’s all with us. People with powers and go and fight dragons and all of that, I love all that."
And that's why Billy Boyd is just plain the best.
Although, that being said, there's one fan that might just be a match for him. After all...
4. Simon Pegg's Saw Star Wars Through His Daughter's Eyes
It's probably fair to say that Simon Pegg likes Star Wars more than most people.
After all, as he (quite adult-ly) told the Guardian:
"I was the exact demographic for that film...I was a fucking 1m-high target, and it got me right through the eyes. I can mark out my life from that point in terms of my relationship with that film."
On top of which, as a student, his thesis subject was reportedly, "A socio- historical interpretation of the film with Ewoks as Vietnamese militia." Which is pretty hardcore.
Even Pegg, though, couldn't have been prepared for awesomeness of what his daughter, in league with J.J. Abrams, managed to pull off.
As he puts it, her reaction when seeing Yoda for the first time in The Empire Strikes Back at the age of 3 - after previously only knowing him in his modern CGI form - was pretty special:
"When he appears, I saw her sort of sit up. She looked at the screen and then she looked at me and then she looked back at the screen and she watched it for a bit. And then she said – “Daddy, he’s real!”. And I kind of like burst out crying. I was like – “You’re my child!” And it’s because he’s there. He’s there interacting with Mark Hamill. Even if he was CG, we’d still know he wasn’t really there because he’s a sort of a little long-eared alien. But the fact that it was a puppet who’s existing in the same space as Mark Hamill, talking to him, it made her believe in him in a way that CG would never do."
Which is adorable and all, but what comes next is what really makes it awesome:
“I told J.J. this, and J.J. went into a number of meetings in sort of the period leading up to making “Star Wars” and I think used that as a good argument for using puppets and masks and that kind of thing.”
And, when Pegg arrived on the Star Wars Episode VII set to visit his old friend J.J.? One of the movie's puppeteers approached him, saying:
“Hey, you’re the guy whose daughter saved Star Wars!”
Which, unsurprisingly, was apparently one of the greatest moments of his life. Because of course it was. His daughter just kept Star Wars awesome.
There's one Star Wars fan, though, whose childhood memories of the movies might just be the most important in the entire galaxy right now...
5. J.J. Abrams Was Never the Same Again
Now, when it comes to beloved childhood memories of Star Wars influencing the future direction of the series, there's really no-one who comes close to matching J.J. Abrams.
So, it's lucky his first memories are...pretty darned geeky then. As he told Starwars.com...
"My first Star Wars memory was seeing the words ‘Star Wars‘ in Starlog Magazine and thinking it was a weird title...I remember seeing an early concept poster by Ralph McQuarrie for the movie. It stuck in my head even though I didn't know what it was — but it looked important. My second memory is actually seeing it in the theater on opening day in Westwood at Avco Theater and never being the same again."
Which is great and all, but it's what Abrams has to say about how the movie resonated with him, and how it still does today, that's what really fills me with optimism for the upcoming Episode VII...
“It was absolutely the first film that struck a cord and that resonates to this day...I think it’s because everyone relates to being stuck in your life and feeling like something extraordinary is just around the corner. To have something scary and tragic happen, like what happens to Luke’s aunt and uncle, is such an engaging story that could take place on a farm in the middle of the U.S. and be just as compelling. And the fact that he ends up being the key to preventing this galactic takeover is kind of an amazing wish fulfillment. I think this taps into a universal desire that we all have to find meaning and purpose that is larger than what we ever could have imagined.”
And y'know what? Now I want to watch [Star Wars: Episode VII](movie:711158) even more... Damnit J.J.!
Alright gang - now it's your turn: