May 4 of each year is designated a National Star Wars Day, “May the Fourth Be With You” or “May the Force Be With You.”
This day is celebrated by thousands of Star Wars enthusiasts, with parties and celebrations around the nation.
Star Wars fans didn’t first introduce the often quoted phrase on May 4. It was 1979, and Britain elected the first female Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher. On May 4, the day she took office, the Conservative Party placed an advertisement in The London Evening News, which read, “May the Fourth Be with You, Maggie. Congratulations.”
Star Wars creator, George Lucas, was asked during a 2005 interview on a German news TV channel to say the famous sentence “May the Force Be with You.” Upon doing so, the interpreter interpreted the sentence into German as Am4 Mai sind wir bei Ihnen (On May 4 we are with you). TV Total captured this and aired it on May 18, 2005.
- Luke Skywalker was almost a girl. A long time ago (January 1975, to be exact) a fledgling screenwriter named George Lucas was working on the second draft of an epic sci-fi space opera he called “Adventures of the Starkiller, Episode One: The Star Wars.” Of the many, many problems was the serious lack of female characters. So, Lucas did something radical: rewrote his story’s main character, Luke Starkiller, as an 18-year-old girl. Star Wars wouldn’t get a female lead until nearly forty years later.
- Han Solo died in the original script. The original ending of Return of The Jedi has Luke assuming Darth Vader’s role as evil Galactic enforcer, and Han Solo dying in his heroic raid on the Death Star.
- The trash in the Death Star garbage compactor scene was REAL. Apparently, the smell was so bad that Mark Hamill burst a blood vessel from trying to hold his breath, and the camera angle had to be adjusted for the rest of the scene so as not to show his injury.
- The actor who played Obi-Wan Kenobi, Alec Guiness, thought of the Star Wars films as “fairy-tale rubbish“.
- The sound of the TIE Fighter engines is actually the sound of an elephant call mixed with the sounds of a car driving on wet pavement.
- Yoda was originally going to played by a monkey carrying a cane and wearing a mask.
- In one draft of Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi, Obi Wan Kenobi and Yoda were going to leave the Force, and return to their physical bodies again to either assist Luke in his confrontation with Darth Vader and the Emperor, or to join him during the celebration on Endor.
- The communicator Qui-Gon Jinn uses is actually an altered Gillete Sensor Excel women’s razor.
- While filming lightsaber fight scenes, Ewan McGregor kept getting carried away and making the sounds of the weapon himself, which had to be removed in post-production.
- In an early draft of the Star Wars story, R2-D2 speaks standard English, and is actually kind of a jerk.
- George Lucas came up with the name R2-D2 while filming American Graffiti. A member of the sound crew asked him to retrieve reel #2 of the second dialogue track, which in the parlance would be, “Could you get R2-D2 for me?”
- The phrase “I have a bad feeling about this” is said in every film.
- Every Star Wars film has been released the week after George Lucas’ birthday on May 14.
- ORSON WELLES WAS ALMOST DARTH VADER. George Lucas originally wanted Orson Welles as the voice of Darth Vader, but dropped the idea when he thought Welles’s famous baritone would be too recognizable.
- JAMES EARL JONES PUT IN LESS THAN A DAY’S WORK. Lucas chose Jones as the voice of Darth Vader because of the actor’s unmistakable baritone. He was given only $7500 for his services, and completed all of his lines in two and a half hours.