The most widely recognized iterations of Batman’s constant foe the Joker would probably have to be Heath Ledger as the unchained mad-dog of The Dark Knight, Jack Nicholson as an urbane creep in Tim Burton’s 1989 film, and to a lesser extent, Cesar Romero’s campy turn in the goofy TV series from the ’60s. But Mark Hamill logged more hours as the Clown Prince of Crime than the rest of them put together, voicing the Joker in the long-running animated series and its many spin-offs. The man with the greatest claim to the Joker persona dusted off his special crazy-voice this week for a more pointedly political purpose than the usual cocktail-party entertainment.
The original Star Wars was driven by nostalgia for pulp magazines, Saturday-morning serials, and a simpler era with clear-cut heroes and villains. The new Star Wars is driven by nostalgia for the original Star Wars, and a simpler era when that title evoked words like “adventure” and “excitement,” and not words like “the taxation of trade routes,” and “Jar Jar Binks.” The characters in Star Wars: The Force Awakens are all searching for something of great importance to the galaxy far, far away. I won’t reveal what this MacGuffin is, but I will tell you what it represents: that old Star Wars magic. Can director J.J. Abrams and the rest of the saga’s new creators find it?
Disney and Lucasfilm are trying very hard to preserve the secrets of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. There are reports that the film won’t screen for critics until the day before it opens in theaters. And there are rumors that not only will there be no more trailers, but that the TV spots that run won’t use any new footage and everything you’ve seen so far, is all you’re going to get. But, even as they try to keep a carbonite fist on spoilers, J.J. Abrams has to leave his house. As much as Disney would like, they can’t keep him chained up in a Rancor pit until December 17. The dude has to go out in public. And that he did just the other day, and as people shouted at him “LUKE!!! WHERE’S LUKE!!!!” he was obliged to answer.
Just when you thought we might be done with Star Wars news today — nope! The glorious internet has provided us with our first legitimate look at Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker in The Force Awakens, and he looks like he’s aged quite nicely into a wizened Jedi.
If you’re one of those people who can’t get enough ‘Star Wars: Episode 7’ spoilers, first, might we recommend our weekly Wookieepedia ‘Star Wars’ round up? With that shameless plug out of the way, let us now offer you ‘Star Wars’ spoiler addicts some advice from Luke Skywalker himself, Mark Hamill. CHILL OUT.
Before he was a CGI creation, Jedi master Yoda was a puppet. Before green screens became the norm, the Dagobah set for ‘The Empire Strikes Back’ was built elevated off the ground to accommodate Yoda’s puppeteers. And before he brought Yoda to life, puppeteer and voice actor Frank Oz was best known as the man behind Miss Piggy. In a weird way, that makes the most wizened character in the ‘Star Wars’ universe a distant relative of the extended Muppet family.
It's hard to imagine Luke Skywalker being played by anyone but Mark Hamill in the original 'Star Wars' trilogy, but it very well could have happened. And according to 'Nightmare on Elm Street' icon Robert Englund, better known to audiences as Freddy Krueger, it might not have happened at all had he not once told a teenage boy about the part after coming home from a failed 'Star Wars' audition himself.