Earlier this month, to celebrate Star Wars Day ("May 4th is with you!"), We summarized dozens of amazing facts about the Star Wars saga . Since May 21, 2020 is the 40th anniversary of the premiere of The Empire Strikes Back we couldn't let the day pass without illuminating the Oscar winner with an additional light in the original trilogy. Here are 10 more fascinating facts about one of the most commonly misquoted films in the history of cinema.
1. The Empire Strikes Back & # 39; s "big revelation" might not be such a big secret after all.
Much has been done about the length to which George Lucas and his filmmakers went to keep the revelation that (spoiler alert?) Darth Vader is Luke Skywalker's father under wraps. In an interview with Sound & Vision in 2004, Mark Hamill said that "it was a wonderfully difficult secret to keep because [Irvin] Kershner, the director, set me aside and said: "Now I know that and George knows that and now you will know that, but if you tell someone and that means Carrie or Harrison or anyone we will know who it is because we know who knows. & # 39; "
But the truth is that anyone who picked up on the film's amendment that was released a month before the film would have known the plot of the plot. (Good thing Twitter didn't exist in 1
2. David Browse spilled the beans on Luke Skywalker's connection to Darth Vader in 1978.
Two years before The Empire Strikes Back put the bookshop on the shelves, approximately 1,000 Star Wars Fans in Berkeley, California, to meet David Prowse, the man in Darth Vader's suit. Believe it or not, Pr owse shared this critical point of action with the crowd. A 1978 newspaper clipping teased the genetic link and even quoted Prowse with the words: "Father cannot kill son, son cannot kill father."
3. The most memorable line of the Empire strikes back is also the most misquoted.  When Darth Vader drops the paternal bomb on Luke, he says, "No, I'm your father. The line is one of the most frequently misquoted in cinema history and is usually repeated as "Luke, I am your father". (Yes, even Chris Farley misunderstood it in Tommy Boy .)
4. Monty Python and the Rolling Stones made Han Solo and Princess Leia smile.
In 1999 Carrie Fisher wrote an essay for Newsweek about her Star Wars experience and told the time she and Ford had a party with Eric Idle and the Rolling Stones One All-Nighter drawn. "Eric had just come home from filming Life of Brian in Tunisia," Fisher wrote. "He brought that drink, which he said they gave the extras so they would work longer. I called it Tunisian table cleaner. I'm usually allergic to alcohol and Harrison doesn't really drink either. But there was a makeshift party that night. The Rolling Stones were there … We stayed up all night drinking the table cleaner and never going to sleep. "
When Fisher and Ford arrived on the set the next morning," we weren't hungover, "Fisher wrote." Like the extras in Tunisia, we were more than ready to work. This morning we filmed our arrival in Cloud City, where we meet Billy Dee Williams. And it's one of the few times in the series that Harrison and I smile. As a dad, Eric is still proud of his influence on the trilogy to this day. "
5. George Lucas wanted Jim Henson to play Yoda.
In an interview with Leonard Maltin, Lucas admitted that he wanted Muppet's maestro Jim Henson to play Yoda. "I went to Jim [Henson] and said, 'Do you want to do this? & # 39; And he said, 'Well, I'm busy, I'm doing this and I'm doing it, I'm making a film and all that – I really can't, but … how about Frank [Oz]? You know, Frank is the other half of me. "And I said," Well, that would be fantastic. "
Henson also recommended creature designer Stuart Freeborn, who explained:" I was the one who said all the elements of Yoda together, and although Jim didn't do Yoda, he and George understood that they would exchange technology information . George would give Jim and Jim would give some of his people to George to help. Wendy Froud helped a bit with the figure and two other people from Jim's company worked the cables for me. "
6. Frank Oz says George Lucas didn't want him for Yoda's voice.
In an interview in 2014, Oz, the normally retired puppeteer and director, said: “George didn't want my voice in the beginning. I gave him a ribbon. He said, "No thanks." And in post-production for about a year, I heard that he was auditioning for Yoda. He had no intention of using me for the voice. Then about 25 or 30 years ago I was on my honeymoon with my first wife and he [called and] said: “Frank, can you come out? I think we want to try out your voice. ”So I flew back and recorded Yoda. "
7 The Empire Strikes Back marked the end of the partnership between Gary Kurtz and George Lucas.
Although George Lucas & # 39; name is most synonymous with the Star Wars universe producer Gary Kurtz came up with the title for The Empire Strikes Back and also served as uncredited Assistant director – was a major contributor to the first two films. However, the two ended their partnership after The Empire Strikes Back .
"I could see where things were going," Kurtz told the Los Angeles Times in 2010 of reasons to step far away from Lucas’s film galaxy. "The toy business began to drive the empire [Lucasfilm]. It's a shame. They do three times as much with toys as with films. It's natural to make decisions that protect the toy business, but that's not the best thing about making quality films. "
8 The emperor used to be a chimp.
In the original version of the film, the scene in which Darth Vader talks to the emperor looked very different. Although many viewers automatically associate the character with actor Ian McDiarmid, the original emperor was an old woman with chimpanzee eyes and the voice of Clive Revill. (You can see both versions side by side above.)
9. Mark Hamill was not a fan of George Lucas’s handicrafts on The Empire Strikes Back .
While fans have long complained that Lucas has made many changes to the original trilogy over the years, even Luke Skywalker himself wasn't crazy about some of them. "I can't say I dealt with that scream they added to the Special Edition (now gone) when Luke sacrifices himself [in The Empire Strikes Back ]," said Mark Hamill Sound & Vision . "Kersh and I talked about letting go when he actually gets to the point of whether or not to join them. It's like committing suicide instead of going to the dark side. So it's a quiet thing. Look, it is [George’s] that he can tinker with as he sees fit. I always say it is his train set when he wants to put up new billboards and new landscaping … Remember the old one: "Is it good to be king?" I think George is "It's good to be the emperor!" If he wants to make them musical comedies, that's his choice. "
10 Cliff Clavin plays a small role in The Empire Strikes Back .
Two years before he started his more than ten-year run as a Boston postman / trivia expert Cliff Clavin at Cheers, and a full 15 years before he started to voice Hamm in the Toy Story , John Ratzenberger appeared early as Major Bren Derlin, who was part of the Rebel Force in The Empire Strikes Back . While he loved being part of such a big film franchise, he mostly remembers how “I somehow got a parking space next to Kermit the Frog. It was Jim Henson's room with that Kermit the Frog shield. So I took a picture of it and sent it to my mother with the heading “Look, Mom. I did it. I have a parking lot next to Kermit the Frog. “