Remember that Stormtrooper that bumped his head on a door in A New Hope? The blooper managed to make its way into the final cut of the 1977 Star Wars film, and the film’s 2004 re-release embraced the gaffe by adding an audible sound effect to accompany the on-screen gag. Aside from the near-entirety of Terminator 2: Judgement Day, the head-bumping Stormtrooper is one of cinema’s most notorious goofs, but the identity of who actually played that Stormtrooper remains a mystery.
A new hilarious and short documentary by Jamie Stangroom titled The Empire Strikes Door aims to answer basically all the questions surrounding the fumble through interviews, polygraph tests, and lots and lots of internet research. It turns out three men claim responsibility for the infamous head bump.
The film features interviews with a few cast and crew members who provide context into the head-bumping incident, but the tale mostly spotlights actor Laurie Goode, a Stormtrooper who recalls hitting his head on a doorway on set, and Martyn Reid, another Stormtrooper who, um, also recalls hitting his head on a doorway on set. The documentary’s finale ropes in a guest panel of judges that includes Kevin Smith, wrestler Chris Jericho, Heroes actor Greg Grunberg, and Ahmed Best, Jar Jar Binks himself, to vote on who they believe was the likely culprit.
What really makes the doc a must-watch, though, is an interview with Star Wars producer Gary Kurtz, who passed away in September of 2018. The Empire Strikes Door features one of his final interviews.