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View Full Version : 30th Anniversary!! Post your EMPIRE STRIKES BACK memories here:



JEDIpartner
05-25-2010, 03:06 PM
I'll go first...


My memory of The Empire Strikes Back comes in the form of getting the Marvel Comics paperback before the movie came out and having my 12-year old head full of knowledge going into the film. I remember going to the now defunct Richmond cinema with my dad on opening day afternoon and being sat down in the centre of the cinema between my dad and some woman who'd come on her own. She kept talking to herself through the whole movie, but that didn't stop me from enjoying it. When the Falcon landed on Cloud City and a caped figure comes striding out to meet the heroes, the woman gasped, "Oh, no! It's Darth Vader!" :stupid: I wanted to tell the silly woman that it was not Darth Vader, but Lando Calrissian! :whip: Little did she know that Vader was in fact waiting for them.

I also remember wanting to tell all of my friends that Yoda was a little elfin guy and that Darth Vader was Luke's father, but I knew better than to spoil it for those who didn't decide to read the novel or the comic for themselves.Happy 30th Anniversary to the best sequel movie EVER!!!!!! :love:

Mr. JabbaJohnL
05-25-2010, 04:34 PM
I remember when JEDIpartner posted about ESB's 30th anniversary when the date was actually ANH's 33rd anniversary. :D

My parents' first date was seeing Star Wars back in 1977, so when the Special Editions came out, they took me and my two sisters to each one. For ESB, I recall one of my sisters loudly asking "What happened to Luke's hand?" right as Vader was telling Luke he was his father. Even though I hadn't seen the films before that and knew very little of the story (I'm not even sure I knew they were all connected, and I definitely remember wondering why the first one was called Episode IV), I was aware of the father-son connection, so it didn't ruin the surprise but it was still noteworthy. :D

Around that time, I got what I believe is my first-ever SW toy, the floating Cloud City from Taco Bell (I loved getting those premiums, and the magnets were mind-blowing at the time). So I recognized Cloud City in the film from the Taco Bell toy. :p

bobafrett
05-25-2010, 05:09 PM
My birthday falls on May 23rd. I was 15 when it came to the theatre, and I loved and had seen the original Star Wars about 20 times. I also remember walking up to the theatre before Empire came out, and seeing a trailer for ESB along with my brother, and I almost wet my pants. I remember seeing a clip of 3PO ripping a sign off of a door, that scene never made the movie, and it whiled by so fast leaving me to wonder about all the little snippets I had seen, wondering what wa going on.

Anyways, my dad and stepmom took me and my brother out for dinner to celbrate my 15th birthday, then they dropped the 2 of us off at the theatre to see the movie. I recall the lobby being packed with folks waiting to see this epic film. I was rather small, and as they let everyone into the room, I was crushed between two adults, who carried me about 3 feet before I managed to get loose.

I worked as a busboy at a resturant that was on one corner of the parking lot of the mall where this theatre was located. So I would bus the tables for the lunch crowd on Saturdays, and then took my tip money, and would run down to the theatre to see the matinee showing, before getting on the bus to go home. My life was simple back then.

wawe1
05-25-2010, 05:17 PM
I was 8 years old and remember standing on a long line to see ESB. While waiting on line, my parents bought me the official ESB movie magazine. The most vivid feeling I can recall was shock and fear at the pictures of Han Solo in carbonite, which had a caption that said: Is this really the end of Han Solo? Then actually seeing the scene and being concerned about carbonite entering Han's slightly opened mouth. Sick stuff. Scarred me good.

Bel-Cam Jos
05-25-2010, 06:37 PM
I will say that it was the first and LAST time I ever left a movie to use the bathroom, and I did it during... Vader and Luke's Cloud City battle. Did not know the SPOILER AHEAD "father" issue until my friends talked about it at school.

For years, it was the only movie I'd ever seen more than twice in a theater (4 times).

2-1B
05-25-2010, 08:22 PM
I was 2 when it was released in 1980, so my vague memory is from late 1982 during the re-release when my mom took me to see it...

I was 22 during the 20th anniversary in Y2K and I vividly remember getting the 20th anniversary issue of Star Wars Insider...hard to believe that was 10 years ago already, too.

Time flies.

DarkJedi5
05-25-2010, 10:58 PM
Wasn't born until the year after Jedi made it to the big screen so my first acquaintance with the films were in a VHS format. I'd watch them over and over again and I remember in kindergarten making my dad fast forward through the Wampa attack scene cause I just couldn't handle it. For the record I was also terrified of the Trolls in Willow but that's a different thread.

plasticfetish
05-26-2010, 04:22 AM
I will say that it was the first and LAST time I ever left a movie to use the bathroomWhen Episode 3 came out, I took my son and one of his little friends to see the film. Just before it started I warned them about drinking their entire sodas, and then asked them to hit the restroom, but they didn't go. So what Happens? Just before the scene where Mace is killed by Palpatine, my son's friend (who we called Millhouse) needed an escort to the restroom. :frus:

Anyway... for Empire, and I've told this story before, my family had tickets to see the film on the 31st of May, but I ended up getting in trouble for something stupid (not doing chores, or something similar), and we didn't go. I've held onto the unused tickets all these years, so I suppose I made out OK in the end... and got to see the film a few days later anyway.

JimJamBonds
05-26-2010, 08:45 AM
The ticket was $4 way back on 1980!?!?!?!?! That seems really high for 30 years ago.

JEDIpartner
05-26-2010, 09:51 AM
I was 8 years old and remember standing on a long line to see ESB. While waiting on line, my parents bought me the official ESB movie magazine. The most vivid feeling I can recall was shock and fear at the pictures of Han Solo in carbonite, which had a caption that said: Is this really the end of Han Solo? Then actually seeing the scene and being concerned about carbonite entering Han's slightly opened mouth. Sick stuff. Scarred me good.

You just reminded me of another memory! I was going to Japan to see my family in the summer of 1979 and I had a copy of Starlog magazine. The front page was a fold out and it had two McQuarrie paintings: one was the Falcon and the surface of an asteroid and the other was a picture of the back of Threepio and Artoo plugged into a link in the Echo Base command centre. My mind just reeled at the thought of what these paintings depicted.

I think the asteroid painting is in the Celebration Japan McQuarrie book, but I've not seen the Echo Base painting in years. I hope that it makes an appearance in the upcoming Rinzler book.

mtriv73
05-26-2010, 10:43 AM
I saw it on while my family was on vacation in Myrtle Beach, SC. I was only 6so I'm surprised I remember that much. It was probably the first movie my brother (then 2) saw in theaters as ANH was for me. Yoda freaked me out, especially when he leans in and says "you will be," when Luke says he isn't scared. He really looked kind of evil there. I was in denial about Luke's paternity (why would the evil Darth Vader not just lie to our hero, afterall.) I don't think I fully accepted it as the truth until I saw ROTJ.

2-1B
05-26-2010, 09:43 PM
The ticket was $4 way back on 1980!?!?!?!?! That seems really high for 30 years ago.

Maybe it was an IMAX showing ?

El Chuxter
05-26-2010, 11:12 PM
IMAX and 3D, oh sleazy one.

darth maul rat
05-26-2010, 11:20 PM
I was almost eleven when Empire came out. I had gotten into Star Wars in late September of 1977, around the time when a lot of the other kids were moving on. The figures in '78 would re-involve them.

Anyway, Empire was the first of the films that I was involved in from the ground up. I remember seeing some younger kids on the bus to school in March or so playing with the Snowtrooper and a few other Empire figures. I think that was the day my Obsessive Compulsive Disorder was born.

I remember bragging to friends that since I had a subscription to the Marvel comic, I would know some of what would happen before they did. Then Marvel changed the contents of that Issue to "Riders of the Void", a completely different story.

The day Empire came out was the last day of 5th grade for me. The plan was we got out at 11:00 and mom would take us across town to Eastwood theater, the only theater in Indianapolis showing it. Unfortunately I brought home a report card with a D in Math on it. Mom was not happy, and for several intense moments she considered not taking us. But she knew how important it was to me, and after I promised to work on Math all summer, she took us. I should have taken the punishment.

We got to Eastwood, and the line stretched out the door and around the building and pretty much all over the place. But we still managed to get in. So, as the lights went down and the place went nuts, we quickly realized something was wrong. As the film rolled, the picture jumped up and down and the dialogue was barely audible. This went on for nearly a half hour. People were starting to get VERY irritated. The management announced they were working on the situation, and finally the movie began playing correctly. But in the true show-biz sense, the show went on. No restarts. And given the fact that the movie was on the other side of town, it would be two years later, in the re-release before Jedi, before I would hear the actual audio. But I had bought the paperback adaptation, and knew a lot of what was going on. Luckily...

JEDIpartner
05-27-2010, 08:05 AM
Oh, no!! Your day totally sucked!! That sounds like a normal day for me. :(

bigbarada
05-27-2010, 10:00 AM
I was almost eleven when Empire came out. I had gotten into Star Wars in late September of 1977, around the time when a lot of the other kids were moving on. The figures in '78 would re-involve them.

Anyway, Empire was the first of the films that I was involved in from the ground up. I remember seeing some younger kids on the bus to school in March or so playing with the Snowtrooper and a few other Empire figures. I think that was the day my Obsessive Compulsive Disorder was born.

I remember bragging to friends that since I had a subscription to the Marvel comic, I would know some of what would happen before they did. Then Marvel changed the contents of that Issue to "Riders of the Void", a completely different story.

The day Empire came out was the last day of 5th grade for me. The plan was we got out at 11:00 and mom would take us across town to Eastwood theater, the only theater in Indianapolis showing it. Unfortunately I brought home a report card with a D in Math on it. Mom was not happy, and for several intense moments she considered not taking us. But she knew how important it was to me, and after I promised to work on Math all summer, she took us. I should have taken the punishment.

We got to Eastwood, and the line stretched out the door and around the building and pretty much all over the place. But we still managed to get in. So, as the lights went down and the place went nuts, we quickly realized something was wrong. As the film rolled, the picture jumped up and down and the dialogue was barely audible. This went on for nearly a half hour. People were starting to get VERY irritated. The management announced they were working on the situation, and finally the movie began playing correctly. But in the true show-biz sense, the show went on. No restarts. And given the fact that the movie was on the other side of town, it would be two years later, in the re-release before Jedi, before I would hear the actual audio. But I had bought the paperback adaptation, and knew a lot of what was going on. Luckily...

That kind of reminds me of my first viewing of ROTS. For some oddball reason the movie cut to a computer screensaver twice during the midnight showing. The second time it happened was right during the big final duel between Anakin and Obi-Wan. One minute they are dueling it out while hovering over the lava pit, cut to a screen saver for 20-30 seconds, then cut back to the movie with Anakin lying on the ground and his arms and legs chopped off.

Anyways, I was 7 years old when ESB premiered, but I grew up in a strict "no movie theaters" household (my dad being a Baptist preacher and all). So I wouldn't see ANH until it's network television premiere in 1983 and I first saw ESB and ROTJ on video tape in 1986. So, I was literally a fan of the Star Wars toys for years before seeing any of the films.

DarkArtist
05-27-2010, 11:59 AM
I was 5 1/2 when Empire hit the theaters and I remember sitting in the front row with my Luke Skywalker X-Wing and Luke Figure and getting scared when the Wampa attacked Luke on Hoth, and leaving the theater in complete shock at the thought that Darth Vader was Luke's Dad. I mean come on he's the bad guy and Luke is the good guy.

I remember seeing it about 6 times that summer and loving every minute of it. after the first showing I would bring my lightsaber with me or a TIE Fighter (loved the asteriod scene, and the Falcon was too big to bring along).

To this day Empire is my #1 favorite movie of all time and it never gets old. I've watched it so far 6 times this month alone and was going to go to the NYC showing in Times Square but was camping with the family.

Happy Birthday ESB. You will still be one of the few movies that will stand the test of time when it's your 50th or 100th birthday. Greatest Movie Ever !!!!

darth maul rat
05-29-2010, 08:20 PM
That kind of reminds me of my first viewing of ROTS. For some oddball reason the movie cut to a computer screensaver twice during the midnight showing. The second time it happened was right during the big final duel between Anakin and Obi-Wan. One minute they are dueling it out while hovering over the lava pit, cut to a screen saver for 20-30 seconds, then cut back to the movie with Anakin lying on the ground and his arms and legs chopped off.

Anyways, I was 7 years old when ESB premiered, but I grew up in a strict "no movie theaters" household (my dad being a Baptist preacher and all). So I wouldn't see ANH until it's network television premiere in 1983 and I first saw ESB and ROTJ on video tape in 1986. So, I was literally a fan of the Star Wars toys for years before seeing any of the films.

I remember one of the reasons why I was in no hurry to see ANH when it came out was that the only times I had gone to a movie, mom had made us dress up for some reason. In my mind, no movie could be worth that.

-dmr

JimJamBonds
05-29-2010, 10:52 PM
That kind of reminds me of my first viewing of ROTS. For some oddball reason the movie cut to a computer screensaver twice during the midnight showing. The second time it happened was right during the big final duel between Anakin and Obi-Wan. One minute they are dueling it out while hovering over the lava pit, cut to a screen saver for 20-30 seconds, then cut back to the movie with Anakin lying on the ground and his arms and legs chopped off.

Stupid flying toasters. :p

Mad Slanted Powers
05-30-2010, 01:18 AM
I had missed out on ANH when it first came out, choosing instead to see Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo that day instead. I didn't see it until it was at the drive-in a year or two later.

By the time ESB came out, I was quite looking forward to it. I think I had the book before I saw the movie. I seem to recall reading some of it on a drive south one day. My dad was a commercial fisherman in Alaska, so before he went up there, he would haul some stuff someplace to be shipped up there. Not sure if this trip was related to that or something else.

I eventually saw the movie while visiting my sister in Seattle. I think it may have been the Cinerama, because I went to see AOTC for the second time there, and it looked similar. I don't remember much about that night. I know I enjoyed it, but since I had been reading the book, I must have known what happened. Seeing what the walkers and Yoda and everything else looked like was cool, though. However, my vision had started to get bad by then (age 10), and I did not get glasses until a couple years later, so maybe it didn't look as good as it could have looked.

I saw the movie one more time later that year with a friend of mine, and I think my brother as well. I seem to recall waiting a while for my mom to pick us up after the movie was over.

I also remember seeing the comic at a Haggen store that summer, but mom wouldn't buy it for me. I recall seeing the super star destroyer in there and thinking how cool that looked.

JimJamBonds
05-30-2010, 02:20 PM
Maybe it was an IMAX showing ?

I bet it was shown in stereo. :laugh:

JediTricks
05-30-2010, 02:32 PM
For ESB, I was 4 years old. I don't have a lot of memories from that age, but I remember coming out of the theater not really clinging to what I had just seen, I remember only the walk outside next to the tall, curved theater wall in its shadow, feeling that the movie had been a real downer and not understanding why my family wasn't in the same boat.

It wouldn't be until the VHS release that I would appreciate ESB, and not the first one, but the 15th anniversary or THX release, something like that when I was working at the video store. Speaking of which, I remember in the early '90s Star Wars wasn't a hugely popular renter, but any time someone wanted to rent ESB (or ROTJ) it was a big pain in the butt because in the computer we had listings for both "Star Wars - Episode V" and one for "Empire Strikes Back, The", and they didn't correspond with what was on shelf because they were different releases.

tagmac
05-30-2010, 04:15 PM
I was only 4 when Empire came out, and unlike ANH, my parents actually went to see it without me. When I was 5 I was at the music store, and my mother said I could pick out one book/record set, to which I grabbed the first one I was standing near, which happened to be Empire. I knew the characters, but had never seen the movie, and just assumed it came before ANH. My classmates corrected me on that one, and I finally did see Empire during an '82 re-release.

A funny sidenote, before that showing they played (what to me was) this wierd trailer that showed the SW characters in strange-looking outfits and scenes, mentioning them by name, and yet I never remembered seeing the name of a movie at the end. For a long time I thought this was just one of those wird childhood dreams/fantasies that felt real. I would find out years later (namely, when the DVD set came out), that I had seen it, and that this was the original teaser trailer for "Revenge" of the Jedi.

Darkross
06-02-2010, 05:37 PM
For me...I saw Star Wars, skipped ESB (my parent's fault), and then saw ROTJ...and it wasn't until 1984 - 1985 when we got our first VCR that we actually were able to rent ESB at the store. Took us nearly 3 days to get the video...then it finally all made sense!...cause until I saw ESB, I was totally confused after watching ROTJ. BTW...I was 12 when I finally saw ESB.