Star Wars Day is almost here, which means it’s time to celebrate that galaxy far, far away. The “holiday” is a pun on the phrase “May the force be with you” and was started by fans. It’s now been embraced by Lucasfilm and its owner Disney, so there are celebrations both official and unofficial in honor of Star Wars.
This Star Wars Day, it’s time to celebrate the upcoming 40th anniversary of “The Empire Strikes Back,” which premiered May 21, 1980, and introduced Yoda, AT-ATs, Billy Dee Williams’ Lando Calrissian and one heck of a parental reveal. That, and of course we all could use the Force right about now.
Star Wars, an epic space opera written and directed by George Lucas, premiered in 1977 and became an almost instant cult classic. Even today, almost 40 years later, Star Wars remains one of the most financially successful films of all time.
The franchise it began remains the most successful one of all time, earning over 2.5 billion dollars since the release of the first film. However, the money it’s earned over the years is hardly the most impressive aspect of Star Wars.
As famous film critic Roger Ebert put it: “Like The Birth of a Nation and Citizen Kane, Star Wars was a technical watershed that influenced many of the movies that came after.”
Star Wars was a real game-changer, beginning a new era of special effect-packed motion pictures bursting with excitement, adventure, and imagination that appealed enormously to younger audiences as well as older ones.
“May the Fourth be with you” was first used by Margaret Thatcher’s political party to congratulate her on her election on May 4th, 1979, and the saying quickly caught on.