Available right now on the BBC website, Mark Burman brings us Living with Star Wars, a look back to that unrepeatable, first explosion of Star Wars as it gobbled up the world of pop culture and embedded itself in the cultural zeitgeist.
This is the true story of how Star Wars Episode IV-A New Hope got made. A film that, as plain old Star Wars, transformed cinema to become part of a pop culture phenomenon known across the world. As Episode IX arrives in our cinemas, wrapping up the destinies of the original trilogy characters and much more, we travel back a long, long time ago to the often agonising, challenging and ground breaking creation of the first film.
Christmas 1977. A great triangular ship roars overhead and fills cinema screens. People duck involuntarily. Sat in London’s West End Dominion, Mark Burman was just one of millions that year thrilling to the astonishing spectacle of what was, back then, just Star Wars. Now Episode IV -A New Hope is the touchstone of an entire multi billion dollar franchise, theme park, all encompassing pop culture phenomena -quoted by Presidents, tagged on to billion dollar defence systems, played with by children & sunk so deep into our collective psyches that it is its own kind of force. You can even practice and worship as a Jedi Knight.
Living The Star Wars chronicles the making of the first ever film from original conception in 1973 through to shooting in England in 1976 to its anxious last days and hours as a depressed George Lucas and an exhausted special effects crew finally ushered their project into the cinemas. Most expecting modest success – the rest is history!
Mark Burman draws on his own interviews, gathered over the past 20 years, from many key personnel who have long since passed into another galaxy. Hear from director George Lucas, producer Gary Kurtz, star Mark Hamill, composer John Williams, artist Ralph McQuarrie, special effects guru John Dykstra – even the original Jabba the Hutt!