One of the joys of a good ‘art of the movie’ book is seeing the creative process behind the whole thing. Any motion picture is a massive undertaking, and The Force Awakens was always going to be an epic effort. The Art of Star Wars: The Force Awakens is a mere glimpse of the truly daunting and impressive work that went into this world-conquering blockbuster.
The art itself is quite frankly amazing. Each piece is lovingly presented, and we get everything from the expected pictures of TIE fighters on fire, to the weirder, more esoteric items such as prototype lightsabres and a beardy version of Yoda. This is the sort of thing we expect from an ‘Art of’ book; basic sketches and designs that evoke the final project. What The Art of Star Wars: The Force Awakens does very well is not only remind of us of things that made us fall in love with Star Wars in the first place, but also tantalise us with the possibilities for the future. Much like the actual movie, in fact.
More interesting are the glimpses into the movie that could have been. Everything from Jedi hunting horrors, Darth Vader’s lost castle, space pirates and a sunken Death Star were considered during the development process. The original names of the new characters from the movie are also enlightening. Rey was going to be called Kira and Poe Dameron went by the name of John Doe in earlier drafts. This give us some idea as to what they were thinking when coming up with the script.
The Art of Star Wars: The Force Awakens is a bit of a treasure. It’s packed with notes and artwork from the production of a spectacular film. If you can’t wait for the home release to come out and you can’t quite bring yourself to go to the cinema to see the movie for the ninth time, then this book will let you relive the experience in new, exciting and very geeky ways. A must for a certain sort of fan, and who isn’t a fan of Star Wars these days?
THE ART OF STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS / EDITOR: PHIL: SZOSTAK / AUTHOR: ABRAMS / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW