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A Trooper’s Point of View: Brotherhood

In previous columns I’ve gone over the ins and outs of being a trooper in the 501st Legion, what it’s like to wear the costumes, building the costumes and more.  This time we are shifting the focus to outside of the costumes.

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The 501st is a lot of things, but first and foremost we are a club.  A place for like minded people to gather and celebrate their shared love of Star Wars and costuming.  There were a lot of things I did not realize about the Legion before joining, one of the biggest things was the friendship and bonds that would form.  Never was this more evident than at the most recent Star Wars Celebration in Anaheim.  The 501st Legion is a worldwide group and a major event like Celebration pulls people in from all corners of the globe.

Even before arriving in Anaheim I had already met several Legion members en route in the Atlanta airport.  I’m not the most outgoing person and I’m usually the last person who will talk to a random stranger, especially in an already awkward and stressful place like the airport.  But seeing others wearing their Legion T-shirts was like seeing a familiar face in the crowd.  As the convention progressed I found myself spending time with Legion members from all over the world including Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and all over the US.

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How does something as silly as dressing like plastic spacemen connect us?

Just from my own experience when I first took the plunge to join I had no idea what I was doing.  That forced me to join the various forums and community for tips and tricks on building.  Going through that first build was an experience unto itself, but it was also one that every member had been through.  The agonizing late nights as you try desperately to get the pieces to work, the frustration as it doesn’t work and you have to undo or redo hours of work.  We’ve all been through it before, so we want to help others in getting it done.

Once you are approved and you are out there trooping you spend countless hours side by side with the same people.  Trooping is physically exhausting so most events end with a gathering for food and sharing stories.  It’s easy to see how bonds can form.

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In Star Wars this connection is mirrored with the Clonetroopers.  As soon as the troopers were introduced in the Attack of the Clones the expanded universe began to write stories of the troopers being a brotherhood, sharing a common bond and being a part of something bigger.  They were all brothers in arms.  The 501st is much the same.  We all come from different backgrounds but share this common thread that connects us.  I like to think that the way the clones acted and connected may have been at least partially inspired by the Legion and it’s members.

Billie Lourd Not Playing Young Leia in The Force Awakens?

“That’s a lie. That’s a rumor. I wish I played a young princess,”  – Billie Lourd

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The rumor that Billie Lourd, Carrie Fisher’s daughter, would be playing a young Princess Leia in a flashback scene in the The Force Awakens, has been circulating unconfirmed for quite some time.  As it turns out, HNGN has reported that Lourd told Entertainment Tonight that she will not be reprising her mother’s role.  It is still unknown as to what role she will be playing at this time, but she did make it sound as though she will play a character in the new Star Wars film. So we will have to keep a look out for Lourd on screen in The Force Awakens December 18th 2015!

 

Diego Luna to Join The Rogue One Cast?

Variety has just reported that actor Diego Luna is in the works to becoming a lead role alongside Felicity Jones and others in the original trilogy prequel set right before A New Hope, Rogue One. The movie is set to debut in 2016.  Lucasfilm declined to comment on rumors of Luna’s possible casting.

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Rumor has it that Rogue One will feature an ensemble cast similar to other movies with a more military feel, but it seems it will still have it’s main characters.

Finally, this is JUST a rumor so nothing is set in stone.

Roundup: The Force Awakens Packaging, Disney Infinity, and More!

Here’s the toy and merchandise roundup for May 2015 to help you catch up to speed with what you’ve missed in the past month. It compiles the latest major announcements and developments related to Star Wars toys and other products.

New Releases and Announcements

star-wars-the-force-awakens-packagingIf you haven’t already done it, mark your calendars! Star Wars: The Force Awakens toys and merchandise will hit shelves on September 4, 2015, at 12:01 a.m. Also known as “Force Friday“,  various stores will be opening their doors at midnight for a grand celebration of this new age of Star Wars. From toys and collectibles to a diverse range of products, such as books and comics, eBooks and apps as well as stylish apparel and accessories, will be available starting at midnight on September 4. Fans are encouraged to share their experiences through social media using hashtags #ForceFriday and #MidnightMadness.

Enter for a chance to win the Star Wars Midnight Madness VIP Shopping Spree. Winners will win a trip to Toys “R” Us Time Square for an exclusive first access and much more.

Celebration-Anaheim-2015-Hasbro-6-Inch-Ahsoka-Tano-001-RebelScumScheduled to arrive in 2016 is Hasbro‘s The Black Series Ahsoka Tano 6-inch action figure. Originally unveiled at Star Wars Celebration Anaheim, the figure received an overwhelmingly positive response from the fanbase. I briefly looked at a list of the existing 6-inch figures and it looks like this will be the first time a character outside of the original and prequel trilogies will be included in the 6-inch line!

Her Star Wars Rebels 3.75-inch figure was recently revealed alongside Darth Vader and that will be available later this fall.

Visit RebelScum.com for a hi-res gallery of Ahsoka’s figure. Continue reading

Commemorate the Launch of Our Patreon Campaign With Our LIVE Commentary of A New Hope!

The Star Wars Report Podcast is taking things to the next level! We will be starting a new era of the podcast and launching our Patreon page on Saturday May 23rd at 12:00pm EST with a live show and then a broadcast of our audio commentary of A New Hope. The broadcast will be sure to feature some special guests (to be announced) as well as our take on the Star Wars film that started it all! It’s Star Wars Month and come celebrate with us!

For almost 4 years, The Star Wars Report podcast has brought Star Wars Fans everywhere entertaining and engaging commentary and discussion of that galaxy far, far away.
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The flagship show of starwarsreport.com, hosts Riley Blanton and Mark Hurliman talk about all the latest Star Wars news. From Star Wars Rebels to the upcoming theatrical films, and all other new Star Wars projects, they cover it all. The show also features conversation and coverage of Star Wars Celebrations, Dragon Con, and other fan gatherings. Packed with in-depth interviews, reviews, can’t-miss coverage and commentary, the Star Wars Report is YOUR Star Wars podcast home.

By supporting The Star Wars Report through Patreon, you’re helping the show improve in quality and quantity. You’re opening doors to an even higher quality weekly program. And as thanks for your support, we have some awesome rewards and bonuses.  

The podcast will always be free, however producing a high-quality weekly program costs precious time and resources. Riley is a full-time student and AFROTC cadet. Mark is juggling the responsibilities of work and being dad. Supporting The Star Wars Report through Patreon will allow us to defer those costs and focus more on creating a quality show.

-Riley