Star Wars Storyboards: The Original Trilogy gives you a peek behind the curtain into the making of three movies set long, long ago in a galaxy far, far away. This beautifully printed book takes the reader from the very first shot of a Star Destroyer coming directly overhead to the very last shot of a celebration on the Forest Moon of Endor. In between, there are rescues, space battles, Jedi training, Jabba the Hutt, speeder bike chases, and lightsaber battles. This is, in other words, Star Wars shot by shot, frame by frame.
Fans will recognize the story beats, of course, but one of the joys of a book like this is seeing what changed between conception and the screen. Certain characters, like Chewbacca and C-3PO, underwent radical revisions even in the course of storyboarding a single movie, while others, like Darth Vader, went through fewer, yet still noticeable changes over the course of a few pages. Likewise, seeing deleted scenes and certain scenes laid out differently from the edited sequence of the finished films bring a sense of joy and re-discovery to fans who have seen these films countless times over the years.
One of the most striking aspects of the book is the sheer variety of pen and ink art styles contained in the storyboards. Color is used sparingly, but stunningly on a few pieces. The storyboards are presented unaltered with stains, notes, re-dos, and all. Commentary from the original artists provides insights and anecdotes of the creative processes that went into creating the movies. Altogether, the book is a veritable course on filmmaking that will be of interest to Star Wars fans, artists, film-makers, and book-lovers alike. – Joel Neff
Star Wars Storyboards: The Original Trilogy
by J.W. Rinzler (editor)
Harry N. Abrams
2014, 352 pages, 9.5 x 12.2 x 1.2 inches