Star Wars 30th Anniversary Celebration: Day 1

Written and photographed for LAist by Cecil Castellucci, author of The Plain Janes and Beige. More pics available here.

Join The Dark SideYesterday, I went to go check out the action at the LA Convention Center, which is playing host to Star Wars Celebration IV. It was the preview Fan Day for the Official Star Wars Fan Club members. I'm member number one bagazillion.

I'm not going to lie. I have a love hate relationship with Star Wars. I also have a Queen Amidala tattoo. It's 'cause I slept in a tent on Hollywood Blvd. for Episode I for six weeks to wait for tickets and at the time I thought that would be a good idea.

I just say this so you know, when it comes to Star Wars, I'm jaded, and kind of over it, but I'm still hardcore.

Then again, when it comes to Star Wars, even Mayor Antionio Villaraigosa is hardcore. So hardcore, that he declared today, the thirtieth anniversary of the movie Star Wars, Star Wars Day in Los Angeles.

I just let out a happy wookie roar.

The dealer room is jam packed with Star Wars stuff and I could barely contain myself. But then I was like, "Cecil! You already have that action figure in your parent's basement! You don't need another one!" But, there were some gems and some good deals to be had, so you know, I bought myself a Millenium Falcon. It looks great next to the AT AT I have.

There was a lot of people that were dressed up. But my fave was this couple in Star Wars Bed Sheet Couture. And today was the Slave Leia Belly Dancing lesson, which I missed. Bummer. But there is plenty of Star Wars-tastic stuff to look forward to this weekend.

There are four "stages", The Concourse Stage with Jay Laga'aia, The Celebration Theater with Dave Collins, Behind the Scenes with Doug Steves and The Petree Stage with Scott Chernoff (that's where I'll be slumming), with different panels and conversations and fun ranging from the Archaeology of Star Wars to Robot Chicken to Advanced Droid Building, to a Tattoo show, to Carrie Fisher in conversation, to Ben Burtt and oh, things to check out that cater to every possible thing you would want to know, or need to know more of, about Star Wars.

Dath Vader on a stickBut the not to be missed thing is definitely The Vader Project. It’s the best thing I saw at the Star Wars Celebration. Master Replicas Inc., curated by Dov Kelemer of DKE Toys, gave a bunch of artists Darth Vader helmets to use as a blank canvas. The artists involved are incredible. Shag, Paul Frank Sunich, Mr Cartoon, Frank Kozik, Marc Ecko, Amanda Visell, Tim Biskup, J. Otto Seibold, Gary Baseman, Joe Ledbetter, Jeff Soto, to name a few. There were 66 helmets on display and it was amazing!

And of course there is the Celebration Store with the limited edition Ralph McQuarrie original concept inspired C3PO and R2D2 action figures, which is a must have. It's simply gorgeous and completes any action figure collection. Old School or New. I think you have get a ticket for a time slot to go to the store, but the line was empty on fan day, so I breezed in to pick up gifts for friends.

Too bad I couldn't buy anything cute for myself, like the track jacket or most of t-shirts, because there were NO WOMEN's sizes in the t-shirts. No. Wait. I lie. There was only ONE girly sized tee. ONE. A tank top with a Slave Leia on it. And I was like "ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?" No, they weren't.

That's your only choice if you are a lady. I totally bought it. Because, come on, Slave Leia! But I was also pretty pissed off, because it's, well, sexist. And what if I wanted one of the other swell t-shirts? What if I'm a Han Solo girl? Or a Lando girl? Or I don't know, a Princess Leia in buns and white dress girl?

Star Wars CoupleOh, sure, you could try the two kids t-shirts they have, A C3PO and an R2D2, but even the youth XS was too big for me and they fit terribly, because they are not made for girls bodies. And besides they were already sold out of the XS R2 shirt when I was there on Fan Day and didn't know if they would get anymore in. I bet the kids shirts will go quickly because I was surrounded by a bunch of disgruntled ladies who were snatching them up as their only t-shirt options.

Also, if you have kids, like, little kids, you are shit out of luck for t-shirts, because they also don't have little kids shirts. And there were a lot of families there, so I don't really know what the organizers were thinking. Star Wars is about family, man. It's a family affair! I even saw Jedi Mom's with their Jedi swaddled babies and also tiny tots with Princess Leia bun hair head bands.

To add insult to injury, one of the sales people tried to pass off a men's XS on me when I was complaining, saying that it would shrink, and I nearly lost my shit. People. People. Men's XS is not a women's t-shirt. It is never going to shrink enough to be a woman's size.


Ooh. I'm still mad about that, but that way leads to the Dark Side.

And I don't want to go all Anakin Skywalker, unless I can wear one of those Vader Project helmets.