Watch: Cool, Vintage Documentary Short on 'The Empire Strikes Back'

February 28, 2013
Source: Reddit

The Empire Strikes Back

As we wait to hear more on the future of Star Wars, kicking off with J.J. Abrams directing Star Wars: Episode VII, and the likelihood of Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford reprising their roles from the original trilogy, a passionate fire for the franchise has been reignited. People are excited about anything Star Wars, even if it's from the past, and that's exactly what we have today. Back in the 80s, French journalist Michael Parbot was given unprecedented access to the production of The Empire Strikes Back, and some of his footage has been seen in a couple of documentaries. And now we have more. Watch!

Here's the vintage Empire Strikes Back documentary, found on Reddit (via The Playlist):

That's nearly 30 minutes of behind-the-scenes footage from The Empire Strikes Back including interviews with director Irvin Kershner and stars Mark Hamill and Harrison Ford. There's some great scenes with the cast and crew shooting in the freezing cold in Norway, acting as the ice planet Hoth, not to mention dealing with the native creatures like Tauntauns and Wampas. Honestly, I wish featurettes and documentaries like this on films from decades ago weren't so hard to come by. This kind of glimpse at the production is fascinating, and I'm not sure we'll get that much access behind the scenes of Star Wars: Episode VII. Cool?

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Reader Feedback - 13 Comments


It's just amazing how they did old school effects.

David Diaz on Feb 28, 2013


Agree! I prefer them to modern CGI.

Szkari on Feb 28, 2013


Not only amazing but preferred, CGI is so damn overdone now that it has become an excuse to make a crappy movie

Tester on Feb 28, 2013


Yeah. Not only that but huge sets. And the movie was back then about $18 million (As Gary K said so himself in this video) which equals today around $50 million. Impossible. I think a lot of people worked with hearts on this movie. You can just feel it. No CGI. Great script. Great actors. I mean, in my book, ESB is still a perfect movie (minus the stupid lucas "i need to add the monster" crap). I miss those days. Today, ok more cynical world but they just dont make them like this anymore.

buzzfunk on Feb 28, 2013


One of my all-time favs and it's great to see the behind-the-scenes stuff.

Smitty on Feb 28, 2013


At approximately 12:29 into the video, a snowcat goes by with XIII on the window. Was Empire at one time going to be Episode 8?

Dirtfolk on Feb 28, 2013


Sorry meant VIII

Dirtfolk on Feb 28, 2013


No. It was "V" all along. That must have designated something else. I was 18 the year ESB came out and I remember what a surprise it was to everyone that Lucas had decided to make it the FIFTH in the series and not the second. That was NOT his original intention (nor was Vader Luke's dad in his original story line).

Smitty on Feb 28, 2013


Just the number of the snowmobile I think.

castingcouch on Mar 1, 2013


I think Harrison was drunk during the interview, heh

Meh on Feb 28, 2013



umm on Feb 28, 2013


I see this and think about how a broke George Lucas goes out into the desert builds ILM, creates Star Wars and Indiana Jones, sells the franchises, gives the money to education, and sets the stage for our collective enjoyment in handing them off to Kathleen Kennedy to manage and JJ Abrams to direct. I love this dude!

JarJargone on Feb 28, 2013


Real movie magic at work.

castingcouch on Mar 1, 2013

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