Tuesday, 24 February 2009

The 7 best Star Wars parodies...

The 7 very best Star Wars parodies ever!
Everyone on Earth has parodied, quoted, or otherwise referenced Star Wars at some point in their lives. Rob rounds up the best parodies out there in other media...
Rob Mclaughlin

Star Wars is one of the most parodied movies of all time. How could it not be? - it's totally iconic and completely changed the face of sci-fi forever. Here's a definitive list of the best Star Wars parodies ever:

The Adam and Joe Show
Back in the mid-1990s, before the onslaught of Star Wars nostalgia, before YouTube and before George Lucas did something unmentionable to most people's childhoods by creating episodes 1-3, Adam Buxton and Joe Cornish were still messing about in their toy box.

Dusting off and setting up their old Kenner Star Wars figures, Adam and Joe produced numerous parodies, routinely casting R2D2 and C3P0 as a gay couple and Obi-Wan as a drunken Geordie. The most unmissable episode contained a classic Crystal Maze parody that had the cast of toys trying their very hardest to beat the Crystal Dome and win the pony trekking holiday in Wales.

Robot Chicken
Ever wondered what was in the hatch Luke opens in the bottom of the At-At in Empire? Well, Seth Green and co. revealed that and so much more in a special episode of Robot Chicken from last year. A bone of contention with the makers of Family Guy (taken in good humour - check out Peter and Chris' chat in Blue Harvest) that Green got out his special before Seth McFarlane, this is a cheap and cheerful take on all six Star Wars films.

Blue Harvest - Family Guy
Airing a few weeks later than the aforementioned Robot Chicken special, the producers of Family Guy went to town with this fantastic take on Star Wars. Having Chris as Luke and Horace ( the creepy old guy) as Obi-Wan was fantastic, if disturbing, but casting Peter and Brian as Han and Chewie was a stoke of genius. I'd be hard pushed to pick the best moment of the episode - Peter singing along to the John Williams score ("Mr John Williams, everybody") while tackling tie-fighters? Orr trying to get a discarded sofa on the Millennium Falcon on their escape? Regardless, this double act is what makes this one of the best planned and funny parodies of the first Star Wars. Roll on their take on Empire!

While not Mel Brooks' best work, there are still some great jokes in Spaceballs. While some of the gags are obvious and puerile, for every miss there are a hundred and one hits to make you smile - like Ludicrous Speed, Dark Helmet playing with his figures or the insane Spaceballs The Movie being filmed live and watched on the video by the guys making the film (you know the bit). Plus there's John Candy as Barf the Dog and an unexpected capture of stunt doubles all wrapp up in the usual Mel Brooks insanity.

Star Wars Holiday Special
Okay, it's not a parody. But the Star Wars Holiday Special was really just a beer-fuelled cash-in on the insane popularity of Star Wars - surely no-one did this for any reason beyond the paycheck? For those of you who've tried to watch it, I salute you. Really, this is for hardcore fans only - watch with care (and through your fingers!).

One of the earliest pieces of online viral marketing, this great Star Wars parody replaces the cops from, um, Cops with Stormtroopers. With superb special effects and a great script the ten minute show takes a look at Jawa society, and finds out what really happened to Aunt Beru and Uncle Owen with the help of a handy thermal detonator.
Tag & Bink Are Dead
This Dark Horse comic features two inept rebels who unwittingly are part of each and every main turning point in the Star Wars movies. Whether it's telling Anakin how to woo Padme with bad poetry and professions of love, or taking a tie-fighter for a joyride (in the ‘that’s no moon’ speech in episode 4), Tag and Bink are, according to the comics anyway, responsible for the fall of the Empire every bit as much as the rebels from the movie. So if you ever wondered who nicked Chewbacca’s medal at the end of Star Wars or who was really under the cool-looking Red Imperial Guard uniforms in Jedi then this mini series will keep you informed.
Source : Den of Geek

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

SAG To Honor James Earl Jones

Famed Actor To Receive Life Achievement Award
Legendary actor James Earl Jones will be honored with the Screen Actors Guild's Life Achievement Award for his career achievements and humanitarian accomplishments, the organization announced Thursday.

A veteran of stage, film and television, Jones is known to movie fans worldwide as the voice of Darth Vader in the "Star Wars" films and the voice of Mufasa in "The Lion King." His other big screen roles include "The Hunt for Red October," "Patriot Games," "Field of Dreams" and "The Great White Hope" -- which earned him an Oscar nomination.

Jones' television credits include his Emmy-winning turns in the series "Gabriel's Fire" and television movie "Heatwave." He also played author Alex Haley in the groundbreaking miniseries "Roots: The Next Generations." He has also provided his voice to the cable news slogan, "This is CNN."

"James Earl Jones' distinguished career on stage, in film, on television, in commercials and as a vocal presence without peer commands our admiration and respect," SAG President Alan Rosenberg said in a statement. "His long and quiet devotion to advancing literacy, the arts and humanities on a national and local scale deserves our appreciation. It is our honor to bestow the Guild’s highest tribute on this extraordinary actor."

Jones' previous honors also include a National Medal of Arts in 1992, and a Kennedy Center honor in 2002. SAG previously honored Jones in 1995 with an Best Actor nomination for his portrayal of South African priest Stephen Kumalo in the film "Cry, the Beloved Country."

In Thursday's announcement, SAG noted Jones' advocacy for literacy. SAG said Jones has long been a spokesman for Verizon and an integral part of the Verizon Foundation’s Literacy Initiative, which gave him the opportunity to travel the country reading to children while talking to them about the importance of reading in their lives.

"In my family, we say the love of reading and book learning is in our bone memory," Jones said in a SAG statement, referring to the significance reading has had in his life. "We would never think of not learning to read and getting an education. My great-great grandparents secretly learned to read when they were slaves and indentured servants. They passed on their love of reading to my great-grandfather who, as a free man, amassed a modest library and encouraged his family to read his books and revere them."

Jones, 77, will receive his SAG honor at the organization's 15th annual ceremony on Jan. 25 in Los Angeles.

Source : www.thepittsburghchannel.com

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Bring Back Star Wars: Return Of The Jedi Reunion

Channel 4 is getting ready to reunite the cast of the 80s hit Sci-Fi movie, return Of The Jedi.

Bring Back Star Wars will see comic Justin Lee Collins race around the US trying to get them to attend a reunion bash.

Top targets include Harrison Ford (Han Solo), Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia) and Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker).

Mark Hamill Snubs Channel 4 Star Wars Reunion

Actor Mark Hamill has refused to take part in a Star Wars reunion show, because Channel 4 refused to pay him £25,000.

It was hoped that Hamill, who played the infamous Luke Skywalker in the original three Star Wars movies would agree to participate in the ‘Bring Back Star Wars’ show that is being fronted by comedian, Justin Lee Collins.

However, he wanted too much money, more than Channel 4 wanted to (or could afford to) pay. An insider told The Sun:

“There’s no way we’d pay Mark so much money. Fortunately Carrie [Princess Leia] is with us and is brilliant.”

Bring Back Star Wars: Carrie Fisher Opens Up About Harrison Ford Affair

Whilst filming for the Channel 4 special, Bring Back Star Wars, Carrie Fisher has opened up about her affair with Harrison Ford.

The pair had a fling whilst recording the first Star Wars movie and the actress, who played Princess Leia said: “I went on the film saying, ‘I’m going to have an affair’, like it was a kiwi, an exotic fruit - because I had never had one.

“I had a crush on Harrison for sure. Harrison is great fun when he’s had a few drinks.”

The 51-year-old added: “I’m going to get in so much trouble”, before revealing: “Once I left the room and came back and he was in the closet not wearing a lot of clothes.”

Defending George Lucas and His Critically Trashed 'Wars'

Last month, George Lucas gave the world a new Star Wars movie, and for the first time in the 31-year history of the franchise, the Empire struck out. The Clone Wars — a computer-animated action flick designed to launch a new series for Cartoon Network that premieres Oct. 3 — has grossed only $33 million in three weeks despite an impressive show of marketing force. More withering were the reviews, which blasted the movie into tiny chunks of Alderaan. This magazine gave it an F. Roger Ebert gave it a star and a half and groaned: ''Has it come to this?'' And supergeek Harry Knowles said it reeked like so much bantha poodoo, it nearly stopped him from buying Hasbro's new $150 Millennium Falcon toy.

But the haters got it wrong — about The Clone Wars, about Lucas (''Sellout''? What does that even mean these days?), and about the current state of Star Wars in general. Missing from much of the overheated bashing of The Clone Wars was the crucial point that it was made for kids, not the grown-ups for whom the original trilogy remains (ridiculously) sacred. Several reviews simply revisited and rehashed the bitter disdain many adult Star Wars fans have for the prequel trilogy. I get that bitterness. But my young Star Wars-loving children don't, nor do the kids who were raised on the prequels and (heresy!) actually liked them.

The Clone Wars is simply too well produced to justify virulent disdain and too insignificant to prosecute the Lucas-legacy argument. The movie is a small pleasure, which is only a problem when you expect huge things from a Star Wars film. Today's kids have no such expectations. For them, Star Wars is a stream of content — books, comic books, toys, micro-cartoons, videogames, DVDs, and, soon, a TV series. This new generation sees no distinction between movies and their merchandise, and that's just fine with them. Expect to see more of it. After all, the biggest movie franchise (Harry Potter) and the most-talked-about youth TV show (Gossip Girl) are literary franchise accessories. In Hollywood, the buzz phrase is ''transmedia properties,'' where movies are but one of many separate conduits for a story. It's a tricky, in-process idea, one that, if executed creatively and with integrity, portends an inventive new form of storytelling in its own right — and Star Wars is leading the way. The Clone Wars will not be remembered as a great animated movie — or an awful one, for that matter. But it might be remembered as part of a larger pop moment that is wiring the future of entertainment.
Source : www.ew.com

Tokyo's dancing Stormtrooper