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Edmontonian among fans worldwide working to recreate Star Wars movie
Linda Hoang, CTV Edmonton
Published Thursday, April 25, 2013 3:51PM MDT
Last Updated Thursday, April 25, 2013 7:47PM MDT
One of the biggest movie franchises in the world is getting a reboot – but instead of a Hollywood film crew, this time it’s being remade entirely by fans.
Fans from around the world –are recreating Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, 15 seconds at a time, and one big Edmonton fan is hoping his short scene makes the final cut.
Neil Graham is an animator.
He animates all day at work and then for three hours each night during a span of a month, Graham would come home and work on animating a special scene for the Star Wars Uncut fan movie project.
“You go to work and you’re doing work. This was work that was almost like model building. You’re doing something that takes a long time but when you’re rebuilding these scenes you really get to pick a part all the details that George Lucas put into the original films,” Graham said.
“It kind of really makes you feel a part of the whole thing when you’re rebuilding it.”
The Empire Strikes Back Uncut is the sequel to Star Wars Uncut – which was made in 2010. That film had millions of views on YouTube and even won an Emmy.
“I saw the first film and I said ‘I have to get on board with that,’” Graham said.
The ‘uncut’ project describes itself as a “crazy fan mash-up remake of the original Star Wars movies.”
The Empire Strikes Back is broken up into 480 15-second scenes and fans are able to claim a scene, recreate it, upload it, and potentially have that scene be featured in the final recreated fan version of the movie.
“The nice thing about this project is that any one can submit a scene,” Graham said.
“If you have a camera, you have some props, you have some claymation or your kids want to wear some wacky costumes, you can grab a camera, submit a scene and be a part of the film.”
Getting a chance to be a part of the film is important to Graham, who says he’s been a Star Wars fan since he was just three-years-old.
“I think the Star Wars trilogy really had a huge impact on inspiring me to be what I am today,” he said.
“To be a part of a project this huge, a massive, massive project, with thousands of people around the world, was just an opportunity that I couldn’t pass up.”
Whether you’re on the light side or the dark side, fans have until May 1 to claim a scene to remake. After that, the final scenes that appear in the movie are voted for online.
Graham is competing with two others who picked the same scene to recreate but currently his video is near the top of the most popular scenes list, so he’s hopeful.
“I’m hoping my odds are pretty good,” he said.
But even if his scene doesn’t get picked, Graham says getting involved in Star Wars Uncut has had a huge impact on him.
“I’m not sure if I’m the light side or the dark side but I think the force is definitely stronger with me now,” he said.
And he’s looking forward to seeing the final cut – featuring work from other die-hard fans.
“Whether it’s a guy who works in Hollywood as an animator or just someone throwing together some cardboard cut-outs and crayons, people are just pouring their passion into the project,” Graham said.
With files from Graham Neil