Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Illustration for article titled An ABC TV special went behind the scenes of iStar Wars/i 38 years ago

Last night, the internet broke out in a fresh frenzy of anticipation when the new teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens dropped. The feverish response is the latest indication of the Star Wars community’s continued strength and reach, a phenomenon that The New York Times highlights today in an article about Lucasfilm’s savvy interactions with fans. But a 38-year-old TV special, newly uploaded to YouTube, reminds us that mass obsession has been part of the Star Wars story from the outset.

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A long time ago—1977, to be exact—in our very own galaxy, ABC set aside an hour of airtime for a film about the making of A New Hope (or, as it was more simply known before Lucas’ revisions, Star Wars). You can now watch the documentary in its entirety on YouTube; it’s embedded below. The show begins by marveling at legions of loyal Star Wars fans, much like the Times article does, before moving on to behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with George Lucas, Gary Kurtz, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, and Alec Guinness. The proceedings are hosted by C-3PO (with bleeping, booping assistance from R2-D2), as he serves the primary function of a protocol droid: providing filler between segments on a promotional TV special.

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