Star Wars Special Issue of Esquire on sale now
In a childhood far, far away...
There were two defined camps when it came to Star Wars: the smaller fanatics, who watched it with almost ritualistic fervour — for ease, let’s call them the Empire — and a more extensive group who would aggressively reject any notion of watching George Lucas’ original culture-shaping sci-fi trilogy — aka the Resistance.
Typically, I fell into neither camp, left to exist in this cultural no-man’s-land, but still looking for acceptance from both sides. A sort of Boba Fett character, if you will.
Sure, I used to run amok with my friends, vrummumm-ing about with faux lightsabres (a long tube of wrapping paper being my weapon of choice), but ask me the name of the snow-covered planet, and I’d draw a blank.
Today, the line between Empire and Resistance still exists, but the Star Wars franchise has grown so large that it seems to engulf the entire planet with fanboy levels of hysteria — the Empire now is by far the dominant group.
Such was the impact of 2015’s Episode VII: The Force Awakens, that upon release, it transformed its cast of new and semi-established actors into household names overnight.
Of those names, perhaps the ones with the most weight on their shoulders were Adam Driver (playing Kylo Ren — the offspring of Princess Leia and Han Solo) and Oscar Isaac (as the wisecracking Resistance fighter pilot, Poe Dameron).
Considering their chops as serious character actors, their initial inclusions raised a few eyebrows. But with so much at stake (Disney spent US$4bn on buying the rights for Star Wars alone), nothing could be left to chance.
For this issue, we decided to shed light on both Isaac and Driver, and explore the impact that Star Wars has had on their careers as serious actors.
As far as success goes, The Force Awakens did well. The kind of well that nets you $2bn at the box office.
The relaunch has won over both the Empire (due to its homage to the originals), and the Resistance (due to its entertainment value), and even got ‘tweeners like me to part with my dirhams.
On December 15, Episode VIII: The Last Jedi will have its regional premiere at DIFF, where even I might have no choice but to pick a side and join the Empire.
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