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Monday, February 19, 2007

THE FORCE UNLEASHED: New Star Wars multimedia thingy headed this way

Same thing happened while I was working on Schrodinger's Bedroom that happened during my school board campaign: I got so focused on the task at hand that I missed other stuff. Fun stuff, even. This has been big news for the last week or so but I'm just now hearing about it. Sounds like this is gonna be something kewl...

Way back in the pre-prequels halcyon days of 1996, Lucasfilm did something called Shadows of the Empire. It was a year-long, ummmm... geez I don't know how to describe it. It was basically a Star Wars movie that was marketed like a Star Wars movie, with action figures and other toys and books and posters and video games and all that... without an actual movie. The entire storyline was told through the merchandising. It was pretty innovative and quite a neat addition to the Star Wars canon. There was even a soundtrack CD for the thing: I still get goosebumps every time I think about the "Xizor's Theme" track from it.

Well, 2007 is the 30th anniversary of the launch of the Star Wars saga and Lucasfilm is doing something like this again. It's called Star Wars: The Force Unleashed. It takes place during the period between Episode III: Revenge of the Sith and Episode IV: A New Hope. The core element of this is going to be a videogame called... wait for it... The Force Unleashed (that's the official website for it by the way). But there will also be books - like an official novelization - and toys and the Force knows what else. The storyline centers on Darth Vader having an apprentice of his own. George Lucas himself is said to be the mastermind behind this latest fully-canon addition to the saga.

How gnarly is this thing gonna be? Check out this action figure of Darth Vader from the upcoming The Force Unleashed toy line that was shown at the recent Toy Fair 2007 expo (this pic and others courtesy of Rebelscum.com):

Geez louise... and you thought Vader was pretty torn up before. Vader looks like he survived an encounter with the wood chipper from Fargo. Neither Obi-Wan or Luke ever did anything that bad to him (talking post-Anakin 'course)... so what did happen to him? That settles it: I'm in with this The Force Unleashed thing whatever it is. Between this and Halo 3, that's plenty enough good reason to get an Xbox 360 sometime this year.

For more about The Force Unleashed, check out this handy compilation article at Wookieepedia.