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Friday, 18 May 2018

The OTHER films of 1977: Star Wars vs Annie Hall


Annie Hall, 1977


To understand the world into which Star Wars was released, it's helpful to look at the other big movies of the era.

Today, Episode Nothing examines the film that took several of the key Oscars that year, including Best Picture  Woody Allen's Annie Hall.

Does this tale of love between urban neurotics have anything in common with a fantasy set in outer space? Let's find out.

Friday, 11 May 2018

The best books about the original Star Wars - part two




Today, I'm finishing my look at some of the most enjoyable or informative books for lovers of the original, 1977 Star Wars.

Its a chronological list, and I'm resuming with the weighty tome that marked the film's 30th anniversary.


Friday, 4 May 2018

The best books about the original Star Wars: a guide

George Lucas's own library. A comprehensive Star Wars collection would surely be as big


Last week, we looked at Craig Stevens' new book The Star Wars Phenomenon in Britain, and I recommended it to anyone interested in the impact Star Wars had, in the UK or elsewhere.

But what other books belong on the shelves of anyone interested in the original Star Wars the first time around?

Here's the first part of a chronological list of those I'd recommend. Watch for longer reviews of some of them in due course.

Friday, 27 April 2018

Book review: The Star Wars Phenomenon in Britain by Craig Stevens


The Star Wars Phenomenon in Britain by Craig Stevens

You might think that when it comes to the release of the original Star Wars, there are no stories left untold.

Well, author Craig Stevens has found some.

His book The Star Wars Phenomenon in Britain chronicles the release, merchandising and promotion of Star Wars in the country where it was made. And whether or not you were around in the UK in 1977-78, I think you're going to like it.



Friday, 20 April 2018

The OTHER films of 1977: Star Wars vs The Spy Who Loved Me, 1977

The Spy Who Loved Me, released in the summer of 1977


To fully appreciate the impact of Star Wars, you have to understand the other entertainment that was around when it was released. 

This is the first in an occasional series of posts about the other films of 1977. I'll look at what, if anything, they had in common with Star Wars, how they were different, and what they tell us about the 1970s.

Today, it's the James Bond movie The Spy Who Loved Me.



Friday, 13 April 2018

40 years on: Star Wars at the Oscars – part three



George Lucas (bottom right) breaks into a smile as the winner of the Best Director Oscar is announced


Today, we conclude our look at the Academy Awards of April 3, 1978. It was one of the most controversial, often uncomfortable, Oscar ceremonies ever. 

As the biggest awards of the night loomed, how would Star Wars fare against Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Julia, The Goodbye Girl and Annie Hall


Friday, 6 April 2018

40 years on: Star Wars at the Oscars – part two

George Lucas at the 1978 Academy Awards.
Would he ever need to get out of his seat?

It was one of the most surprising Oscar nights ever. The 50th Academy Awards were held amid protests and controversy, with the top prizes going to a film whose director was not there.

Last time, we saw how Mark Hamill and the droids helped lighten the mood after some gasps and boos at a controversial speech by Best Supporting Actress winner Vanessa Redgrave. Now, it's on to more of the competitive awards – and a few early wins for Star Wars.