Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Hot Toys Announces Star Wars License

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By: Benjamin Hart

Hot Toys, makers of highly detailed figures, vehicles and dioramas, have announced that they have acquired the licence to produce Star Wars merchandise. They currently host offer a large selection of products, from Iron Man and Batman, to Indiana Jones and Pirates Of The Caribbean. Now the company is setting it's sights on a Galaxy far, far away, specifically Star Wars Episode VII. Hot Toys posted the following statement on Facebook:




So, what characters, ships or vehicles are you hoping to see immortalized in this awesome form? Let us know in the comments below.

Source: Facebook

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Rumor: Marvel Working on Princess Leia Comic Book Series

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By: Dominic Jones

San Diego Comic Con kicks off tonight with 'Preview Night', so we can expect news and rumors to come flying fast and furious over the next five days.  The first deals with upcoming Star Wars comic books from Marvel, who will obtain the Star Wars Comic Book publishing license in January 2015.  According to Bleeding Cool, one of the first publications from Marvel will be a Princess Leia comic book series!  It was previously reported that Marvel was planning on releasing two Star Wars comics series when they first got the license, but this is not one of those series.  Instead it appears to be a new addition to the line up of comics.  No word yet on what those other series might be.  (And no, the re-release of the old Marvel comics is not one of their new series planned).

I think a Princess Leia comic series is a good idea.  There has been a lot of noise made by the fan community regarding gender equality and representation in new Star Wars projects over the past few months, so it's nice to see that the creative forces are actually listening!  I think there's lots of potential for Leia stories in pretty much any time period from pre-Episode IV right up until before Episode VII.  

While it seems unlikely that we'll get any announcements regarding future Star Wars comics at Comic Con, neither Marvel nor Lucasfilm have panels about Star Wars comics, we'll keep our eyes pealed over the next five days to see if they make any surprise announcements.

As always this is just a rumor until confirmed or denied by Lucasfilm or Disney.

 
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Report: Battlefront Will Not Tie Into Episode VII

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By: Benjamin Hart

Since EA announced they would be creating the next Star Wars: Battlefront game, there has been much speculation about what elements from the Star Wars Saga might be included, especially Star Wars Episode VII. Steven Ruygrok on Examiner.com is reporting that Executive Vice President of EA Studios Patrick Soderlund recently spoke about how the game may or may not be connected the the upcoming film:

"We've shown parts of the game to date. You know what were building is more rooted in the traditional Star Wars universe, not so much linked to the movie being made." He continues, "We wanted to make a game that celebrates the history of Star Wars. We don't have a particular tie to the movie, but obviously we would prefer to launch Battlefront sometime close to when the movie launches,"

While this isn't a firm denial, I think it's safe to assume that we may not being seeing maps, characters and/or ships from Episode VII in Star Wars: Battlefront. This is disappointing news, but not that unreasonable. Due to both the game and film being in production at the same same time, with both expected to be release within close proximity to each other, it could make it difficult for both production teams to collaborate effectively. From what we saw in the first Battlefront teaser trailer, they seem to be focusing heavily on the Original Trilogy films. And even so, there's always the possibility of future downloadable content(DLCs) that is based on Episode VII. 

Via: Facebook
Source: Examiner

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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Clone Wars Strikes Back | Episode 16

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Dominic and Ciaran are back to discuss the episodes "Corruption", "The Academy", and "Assassin".  How do they feel about the Mandalore duology now that they've seen what happens on Mandalore?  What is it about Mandalore that makes everyone act so strange?  Why is Yoda's advice to Ahsoka about premonitions so different from his advice to Anakin?  Plus, corruption, Aurra Sing, the relationship between Ahsoka and Padme, and Yoda's advice gets reinterpretted as Disney songs!  All this and much more!
Right click here and select save link as to Download MP3.    
Subscribe and Review on iTunes
Facebook: www.facebook.com/clonewarsstrikesback
Twitter: @TCWStrikesBack
Email: clonewarsstrikesback@gmail.com    
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New 'Star Wars Rebels' Lego Set Revealed

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By: Dominic Jones

Lego has announced the third Lego set based on the upcoming animated series Star Wars Rebels (the first two being "The Ghost" and "The Phantom").  MTV revealed the "Wookiee Gunship" set which fans will be able to check out at the Lego booth at San Diego Comic Con this week.  The set will be 570 pieces and includes three Wookiee mini figures and a mini figure of Kanan.  It hits shelves in January of 2015 and will cost $69.99. 

Check out the official description below,
75084 Wookiee Gunship
Protect Wullffwarro and his Jedi friend, Kanan Jarrus, with the powerful LEGO® Star Wars Wookiee Gunship. As featured in the Star Wars: Rebels animated TV series, this amazing battle-ready craft has loads of weapons to see off any invading force, like movable front cannons and an elevating top cannon. When the action really heats up, raise the wings into attack mode and unleash the never-before-seen rapid shooters! If you run low on ammo, open the side hatches to access the spare supply, then lower the rear bay door and unload the mobile gun post. Includes 4 minifigures with assorted weapons: Wullffwarro, Kanan Jarrus and 2 Wookiees. Available January 2015, 570 pieces, $69.99.

Also at San Diego Comic Con, Lego will be displaying a life size Chopper droid made entirely out Lego.  According to MTV, "Chopper contains 11,774 bricks, and took the LEGO Master Builders 143 to design and build. He stands 36 inches tall, and weighs 58 pounds, which means you’re going to hear a lot of people saying, 'Aren’t you awfully big for a droid?' around the LEGO booth."

Sounds like the Lego booth is a can't miss booth at SDCC! 

 
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Rumor: Potential Details About Gwendoline Christie and John Boyega's Roles in Episode VII

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By: Dominic Jones

Devin Faraci over at BadAss Digest is back with more potential details about Episode VII, this time regarding the role Game of Thrones star Gwendoline Christie will play.  Keep in mind that these are just rumors and could very well turn out to be false, but if you don't want to risk knowing anything about the movie this is your official SPOILER ALERT!  If you are trying to remain spoiler free, stop reading now.

First off, Faraci reports that Gwendoline Christie is playing an imperial officer and Boyega is playing a stormtrooper who has deserted the empire.  Apparently, Christie was Boyega's commanding officer and is after him for deserting.  He also reports that the sand planet in Episode VII is not Tatooine (sorry, but I don't buy that part for a second).  

What's also interesting is that, Faraci reports, that Christie's role was originally to be played by a man in the draft of the film written by Michael Arndt, but was gender swapped was Lawrence Kasdan and JJ Abrams took over script writing duties.  This also happened late in the game, because Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock, Star Trek Into Darkness, #CumberWatch) was in talks to play this part before the decision was made to make the role a female.  

While I'm sad that Cumberbatch (a favourite of ours here at The SWU) won't be in the film, I do think it was a very cool and progressive move by Abrams and co. to gender swap the role.  Between Daisey Ridley, Gwendoline Christie, Lupita Nyong'o, Crystal Clarke, and Carrie Fisher, Episode VII already has more significant female roles than any prior Star Wars film.  I feel this is a great thing, as it is more reflective of Star Wars fandom.  Besides, between Episodes VIII and IX as well as all the spin off films, Cumberbatch has many more chances to be in a Star Wars film in the coming decades.    #Cumberwatch lives on!  (If you don't know what #Cumberwatch is, you need to start listening to the SWU Podcast!)

As for Boyega playing a deserter stromtrooper and Christie playing an officer, I think that's a cool concept for a sub plot.  It creates a lot of potential for drama between heroes over whether or not to trust this guy.  Plus it gives him a very interesting back story that could be explored in other media....

As always, this is just a rumor until confirmed or denied by Lucasfilm or Disney.

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Rumor: Fisher, Hamill & Mayhew Have Returned Home From Episode VII Set

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By: Benjamin Hart

According to our friends at Jedi News, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Peter Mayhew have returned home to the United States while Harrison Ford recuperates from his leg injury. Production on Star Wars Episode VII is expected to go on a hiatus in August, they will probably return to London once filming resumes.

Jedi News also mentions that this is the reason Peter Mayhew did not appear at the recent London Film and Comic Con. Carrie Fisher, however, did attend.

And speaking of Harrison Ford, The Daily Mail recently spotted him out and about once again. This time with his family boarding his private plane. We wish Harrison the best on his continued recovery!

Sources: Jedi News, Daily Mail

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Exclusive 'Rebels' Preview Screening At SDCC

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By Ciaran Duggan

Wow! Today has been a jam packed day for Star Wars Rebels news! In the early hours of the day Lucasfilm released an official extended Rebels trailer and (based on the reaction in Star Wars forums), the trailer has effectively enhanced fan’s anticipation and optimistic conjecture of the upcoming series. For those who have not yet seen the trailer, you can find it here.

In addition to the Rebels trailer, Bombad Radio has displayed a fresh Rebels poster which notifies Star Wars fans of an up and coming exclusive Rebels preview screening just two days in the future! The exclusive screening will be located in San Diego (and yes we are very covetous of those travelling to San Diego Comic Con, namely Mr. Seekell). At 8:30 pm on Thursday 24th July head over to Reading Cinemas in San Diego in order to be one of the first to witness Star Wars Rebels in theatres; viewing episodes which will not be released on television for another three months. Akin to the show’s young rebel protagonists, the series Star Wars Rebels is on the rise!

Source: Bombad Radio

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BREAKING: Extended 'Star Wars Rebels' Trailer Released

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By Chris Seekell

Lucasfilm has just released a new extended trailer for the upcoming TV series Star Wars Rebels. The trailer features about a minute of never before seen footage from the show, but does not provide any new information such as a release date. Expect to see more revealed at San Diego Comic-Con later this week. You can watch the trailer now below!

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Monday, July 21, 2014

Message from J.J., Episode VII X-wing Revealed

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By: Lillian Skye


J.J. Abrams is back with another video update on Force for Change and speaks to fans from London from what appears to be the set of Episode VII. In the video, Abrams encourages fans to support Force for Change, noting that there is still one week left to donate and that the campaign has supporters from 119 countries. The money raised from Force for Change will benefit UNICEF, and each donation counts as an entry. Every person who donates will be entered in a drawing for a chance to film a scene in Episode VII. In the final week of the campaign, fans also have the chance to win a private advanced screening of the movie in their home town.

What's special about the video, however, is what's unfolding around Abrams. As J.J. addresses the fans, the camera is slowly zooming out, revealing a large vessel behind the director. As the video progresses, the entire ship is revealed and a pilot walks across the sand and towards the vehicle. Abrams steps out of the pilot's way as he ascends the ladder and climbs into the ship.

Star Wars fans took to Twitter, questioning the authenticity of the vehicle and prompting a response form the official Star Wars twitter account, which confirmed that the ship is "an Episode VII X-wing."


"Thanks for your support. Hope to see you on set this summer," Abrams says as a mouse droid zooms past his feet. See the entire video from Abrams below, and support Force for Change for the opportunity to win a trip to the Episode VII set to film a scene in the movie.



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Sunday, July 20, 2014

Opinion: This Is Not the Outrage You're Looking For

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By: David Gremillion

The Death Star has been destroyed, Han Solo proves his loyalty, Luke Skywalker yells out "CARRIE!" on accident, and they all go off with great big smiles on their faces.

Yep, times are good for the Rebel Alliance.

When you work hard, you play hard. So our valiant victors celebrate the win in a big way with pomp, glamour, and of course a medal ceremony. Luke gets his medal with a big grin on his face, Han Solo gets his with a wink toward Princess Leia...

...and that's it.
Chewbacca lets out a roar and stands there, sans medal.
Let the controversy commence!

For thirty-seven years (feel old yet?) fans have wondered why George Lucas chose to overlook the "walking carpet" during the medal ceremony. Was it racism? After all, the humans got their medals. Was it just an oversight? Perhaps it was just due to a lack of time?

Nope, it was perfectly consistent and is exactly what should have happened.

First, let's ignore the fact that Carrie Fisher would need a ladder to get a medal on Chewie and take a deeper look at the lore. Wookiees do not take pride in material awards like medals, ribbons, or trophies. It isn't in their nature to put things on a mantle or around their necks and say "look how awesome I am!"

In the "official" words of Lucas (which could change on a whim), Chewbacca was actually given a medal at Han's insistence. In a smaller, more private, gathering, Leia draped a medal around his neck...although I don't think Han arranged a kiss to go with it.

But, did he deserve the medal?

Sure, Chewie is lovable and one of the most popular characters in all of cinema. However, in this writer's opinion, he didn't do enough to warrant the award. Perhaps he convinced Han to return, perhaps he was the co-pilot during the mission, but here's the key point to consider.

Wasn't Wedge more deserving? The man who flew with Luke, had his back, fought since the beginning of the battle, and only flew out of the trench on Luke's orders?

Wasn't R2-D2 more deserving? The droid who was nearly destroyed during the battle? Who worked on Luke's X-Wing during the fight? Who carried the plans within his rusty innards that allowed them to plan the attack to begin with? Even Padme thanked the little droid during the Phantom Menace for a job well done.

Wasn't Garven Dreis more deserving? The man who volunteered to draw the tower guns' fire on the first pass? Who led Red Squadron during the attack? Who was the only person, other than Luke, to launch his torpedoes? Whose leadership and strategy contributed directly to the victory?

I love Chewie, always have, always will. But when you look at the actual battle itself, was Chewie deserving of the Geek Smack Talk that has haunted social media for the past thirty-seven years or should we all be asking ourselves...

Where is Artoo's medal?!?

David hosts a weekly talk show called "Get Your Geek On" and can be heard live every Monday night at 8pm CST at www.channel1138.com

This article is an opinion piece and represents the views of the writer, and not the entire Star Wars Underworld organization.

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Rumor: Potential Episode VII Plot Details

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By: Dominic Jones

Has some of the mystery surrounding the plot of Episode VII been lifted?  Devin Faraci over at BadAss Digest is reporting to have some interesting details of some early scenes from the movie.  Keep in mind that this is just a rumor and could very well turn out not be true.  Regardless, this is your official SPOILER ALERT!  If you don't want to risk knowing anything about the movie stop reading now. 

According to Badass Digest,

Imagine the standard Star Wars crawl, and when it ends the camera pans up to the stars. But instead of a spaceship zooming into frame we see… a hand! A severed hand, tumbling through space. A severed hand gripping a light saber.

That hand falls onto a desert planet, where it is discovered by characters who will be our heroes. One is Daisy Ridley. The other is John Boyega, who is playing someone trying to change his path in life (again, I’m keeping it vague here). They recognize the light saber as a Jedi relic and decide to return it to the proper people.

Their quest takes them off world, and they meet up with Han Solo and Chewbacca, who aren’t flying around in the Millenium Falcon anymore but are piloting… well, that could be a spoiler. I’ll leave it. Anyway, Han and Chewie recognize the light saber as Luke’s, and they say they haven’t seen their friend in thirty years, since the events of Return of the Jedi.

So begins a quest to find the missing Jedi Master. Meanwhile, on an ice planet, nefarious forces are building a super weapon, one capable of destroying not planets but entire solar systems…

So that sounds....interesting.  There are some interesting elements.  I like the concept of Luke's lightsaber serving as a mcguffin to get the story going, especially if it is going to be 'The Search for Luke Skywalker'.  Also, Han and Chewie not flying the Falcon is a twist (not necessarily a bad one) and perhaps part of the plot will revolve around them getting the Falcon back (or returning to it after an extended period of not using it).  

However, there are certain elements of this rumor that sound awful.  For starters, panning up to the hand after the crawl.  A pan up is no big deal (Attack of the Clones did it), but a hand?  In space?  The idea of a hand surviving both space and re-entering the atmosphere is a bit ridiculous, even for a franchise that features noise and fire in space.  Also, why is Luke's hand floating in space?  Is it the hand he lost in Empire?  If so, how did it survive so long?  If not, how did he lose his other hand?  Then there's this issue, a super weapon capable of destroying an entire system?  Really?  We've already had two Star Wars films (three if you want to count the droid control ship in Episode I) that feature super weapons.  That just seems way over the top and shows a lack of creativity (and, for the record, I had no problem with there being a second Death Star).

Overall, I have to say I hope these rumors aren't true.  That being said, if they do turn out to be true I hope they come across a lot better as moving pictures on the silver screen than they do as words on a computer screen.  Keep in mind that we shouldn't truly judge something until we actually see it play out on screen.  Something that sounds lame when written down may look incredible on the big screen.  A perfect example of this?  Star Wars.  Imagine you're George Lucas trying to pitch that movie in world without Star Wars.  It probably wouldn't have sounded that great either, but without it you would not be reading this right now.

As always, this is just a rumor until confirmed or denied by Lucasfilm of Disney.


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In Case You Missed It: July 12th - 19th, 2014

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By: Benjamin Hart

Welcome to another jam packed edition of ICYMI! This week we got a ton of Rebels news, plus Comic Con, Stewart VS Colbert, Minecraft, Boba lives, and much more! Read on and get caught up:

News

Jason Isaacs To Voice The Inquisitor
Yes, you read that right. Lucius Malfoy himself will be providing the voice of Star Wars Rebels' main antagonist. Read more...

Star Wars Rebels Visual Guide Leaks Info
Lots of new characters and plot points came out of the recently released Visual guide for the upcoming animated series. Read more...

Filoni Talks Star Wars Experience and Inspiring a New Generation
The Co-Executive producer Read more...

Clone Wars Mystery Character In 'Lords Of The Sith' Revealed
We now know which Star Wars: The Clone Wars character will be appearing in this new canon novel! Read more...

'Star Wars: The Original Marvel Years' Omnibus Announced
Marvel is now producing Star Wars comics, and there first order of business is to bring back the orignal comics they first produced over 30 years ago.  Read more...

Star Wars Insider Announces Jeffery Brown Signing at SDCC
The author behind such books as Darth Vader and son and Jedi Academy will be signing autographs at San Diego Comic Con. Read more...

SDCC Preview: Exclusive Merchandise
An assortment of figures, busts and books are being offered up only at San Diego Comic Con! Read more...

Rinzler: Boba Fett Survived The Sarlaac, According To George Lucas
The Maker has spoken! Boba Fett lives! Read more...

Stewart VS Colbert For 'Force For Change
Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert have a showdown to see who is truly the biggest Star Wars fan... hilarity ensues. Read more...

PewDiePie Challenges Stomrtroopers In Support Of 'Force For Change'
The YouTube star takes on a squad of Stormtroopers for a good cause! Read more...


Rumors

Christina Chong Cast In Episode VII
The 24 and Doctor Who star may be among the growing cast of the next Star Wars film. Read more...

Daisy Ridley's Episode VII Character Name Revealed
Could "Kira Solo" be the name of Daisy Ridley's character? And what the heck is a "Rocker"? Read more...

'History Of The Sith' Project In The Works
The infamous Red Lightsaber wielding villains could be getting an expanded backstory in an upcoming production. Read more...


Also check out




Tidbits

  • Georgia State Football player Chris Conley wrote and direct a Star Wars fan film, and it's awesome!
  • A trailer for Episode IV: A New Hope made completely in Minecraft? You've gotta see this.
  • You've never seen a Star Wars opening crawl quite like this.
  • This hilarious sketch by Nerdist gives us a closer look at at private life of Admiral Motti.





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Saturday, July 19, 2014

PewDiePie Challenges Stomrtroopers In Support Of 'Force For Change'

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By: Benjamin Hart

YouTube sensation PewDiePie has jumped on the Force For Change bandwagon with a brand new video! The hugely popular video game commentator, who is currently the most subscribed YouTuber overall, released a video today where he challenged a squad of Stomrtroopers to a staring contest, charades and a dance off all to promote the Force For Change initiative to support Unicef. Check it out below:



Click here to find out how you can support Force For Change and enter for a chance to have a role in Star Wars Episode VII!

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SDCC Preview: Exclusive Merchandise

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By: Benjamin Hart

San Diego Comic Con is right around the corner, and one of the highlights of the convention is always the exclusive collectibles on sale there. This year Lucasfilm and it's licencees are bringing an assortment of awesome Star Wars merchandise to the San Diego Convention center. They have been unveiled at various places online, so in case you missed them, here they are:


McQuarrie Style Luke Skywalker Mini Bust



The art of the late Ralph McQuarrie lives on with this mini bust. Based on early concept art for A New Hope, it measures 6.5″ x 7.25″ x 5″ and priced at $85.

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Jek Porkins Mini Bust



Porkins lives! Out of his X-Wing cockpit and with a Blaster in hand, the infamous pilot is back and battle ready in this mini bust which measures 80’’x 6.75’’x 5’’ and priced at $85.

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Jabba The Hutt Black Series



Perhaps the most interesting, and certainly largest Black series figure to date, Jabba The Hutt has been been realized in super articulated plastic form by Hasbro. He also comes with his hookah and Salacious Crumb.

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Over-Sized AT-AT Driver Figure



Nostalgia seeking collectors, take note! This one from Gentle Giant is a blown up replica of the original Kenner 3 ¾” figure, measuring at 12'' tall and complete with a rifle and packaged in an Empire inspired jumbo card back with original artwork and photos. It's priced at $80.

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31" Shadow Trooper Figure


Produced by Jakk's Pacific, this giant figure features 7 points of articulation and an Imperial Blaster Rifle. Only 500 of these will be released at $50 each, so you'd better work quickly to get yours!

Learn more...













Free Advanced Reader's Edition Of A New Dawn


A ton of new (canon) Star Wars novels are on the way, and you can nab the very first of this new line of books for free at SDCC! Copies of A New Dawn, which is a prequel to the upcoming Star Wars Rebels series, will be given to attendees of special signings by the author John Jackson Miller and cover artist Doug Wheatley.

Learn more here and here...











Darth Vader Hot Wheels Car & Display Case


Mattel presents the very first car in a new line of Star Wars themed Hot Wheels cars. This Darth Vader car is offered in a special Lightsaber-shaped display case, complete with lights and sounds. It's priced at $40.

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Hallmark Wampa Keepsake Ornament 


Put a little Hoth on your Tree this Christmas and grab this detailed Wampa Keepsake ornament. Complete with his Tauntaun dinner in hand and covered in velvety flocking to simulate Wampa fur, it's priced at $35.

Learn more....










Hallmark Star Wars Itty Bittys



Be sure to grab one of these plush Tusken Raider and Bantha toys from Hallmark!

Learn more...







Lego Microfighter Ghost & Chopper


You've seen the ship in various clips from Star Wars Rebels, and even normal Lego models. Now get the tiny version of the Ghost, along with a Chopper mini-figure

Learn more here





If any other exclusives are revealed, we will be sure to add them here! Also be sure to check out the full roster of Star Wars events happening at San Diego Comic, and listen to the latest SWU Podcast for a full preview of the convention. Keep checking back to StarWarsUnderworld.com for exclusive coveration of SDCC!

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