Counting down the 345 days until The Force Awakens on December 18, 2015.
In the days leading up to Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, And There Came A Day will present links, images, videos, art, memories, laughs, theories and thoughts leading up to the big day… which happens to be on my birthday! ENJOY and may the Force be with you, always… or at least until 12.18.15!
STAR WARS OVER THE AIR
It is sometimes hard to remember what a phenomenon Star Wars was when it opened. No one – truly, no one – saw it coming. Once it hit, the attempts to cash in were many. Some were successful, some were not, some were disasters.
Today, we feature a completely and wildly successful Star Wars offshoot: Star Wars: The Radio Drama.
Produced in 1981, Star Wars: A New Hope is a 13-part radio serial first broadcast on National Public Radio in 1981. It was six hours long and featured music by John Williams and sound design for Lucasfilm by Ben Burtt.
The cast was outstanding: Mark Hamill and Anthony Daniels played Luke and C-3PO respectively. Perry King, who had auditioned for Han Solo (more on that in a future Countdown) played Han and Brock Peters voiced Darth Vader.
The program expands the story line by adding a great deal of back story. Examples include Princess Leia’s acquisition of the Death Star schematics; Luke Skywalker using his macro-binoculars to observe the movie’s opening battle and trying to convince his friends at Tosche Station of what he saw (a scene which was actually shot for the film); a skyhopper race that results in Luke’s vehicle being damaged (seen in the movie in the background of his Tatooine garage); Han Solo’s encounter with Jabba the Hutt’s agent, “Heater”; Vader’s interrogation of Princess Leia; and Admiral Motti’s attempts to convince Grand Moff Tarkin to leverage the Death Star as a political tool.
All three movies from the original trilogy were adapted into radio dramas and I plan to listen to all of them before The Force Awakens opens!