Tonight, I had my third straight Star Wars based dinner in a row. What I saw on this third dinner was really cool! We gotta lotta cool stuff lined up right now.
If you’re a Star Wars fan, particularly of Star Wars photography, you’ve probably seen the photos of Princess Leia and Chewbacca conducted for publicity stills in the late seventies to early eighties. There’s everything from Chewbacca carrying Leia like she’s his bride, to a gentle kiss, to straight on comedic groping of the princess by the Wookiee. Today I’m going to tell you about a photo of Princess Leia and Chewbacca from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The photo is very much in line with what we have seen from vintage photos.
In the photo, Princess Leia is siting with her arm around the Wookiee, on his lap, as if Chewbacca is Santa Claus. Han Solo stands behind them with his arms crossed. The first photo in the gallery is really similar to the pose they’re in. Han Solo has the coat that looks really similar to the Indie Revolver concept leak, but the shirt is a little more Return of the Jedi and the duster appears to be the shorter cut, so its very much not a trench coat. His hair is gray, he’s got some mileage, sweetheart. Han’s expression is impatient but you can tell they’re having fun taking the photos.
Contrary to the bits we’ve seen of Chewbacca so far, he really does have a little more grey in his fur but not a ton, just more than the recent photos would have you think. In the “Thank You” video, I think that’s a stunt double’s costume. The Bob Iger pic had an Instagram filter on it that obscured the real look of the beast, so to speak. Basically, Chewbacca’s A New Hope mustache is back and its more serious than ever. Its pretty dark. The front of the mask has very yellowish/brown hair which allows the ‘stache to really shine. When you get to the top of the head hairline, its a little darker in tone and there’s more white/grey hair dispersed in there than the Return of the Jedi costume had. The source joked that Chewbacca’s ‘stache is almost looking a little Billy Dee in the shot. The costume looks really stellar and Chewbacca seems to have an upgraded satchel as well. In reality, the Chewbacca costume hasn’t really been revealed as the hero suit is still unseen publicly. The hair is combed straight back, classic style, no bangs for the Wookiee.
Princess Leia is wearing a solid jumpsuit. It is grayish blue. She wears a black vest which hangs below her waist. The vest is more in the style of the Tantive IV trooper than Han Solo’s classic vest. The jumpsuit has an open button-down collar and the cuffs are rolled up about two inches at her wrists. She has a thick black belt with a silver belt-buckle (very 1980). Her hair is braided and pulled over to the side so it hangs over her left shoulder in a ponytail. Her hair is grey with dark blonde tones to it. She has dark black boots on with a darker black band around the top of them.
Leia’s costume really evokes the look and feel of the Tantive IV Troopers sans dopey space helmet. The blue with the black vest and the black boots almost works in a way as to state she is or was of those people. Its an early Spring attire that says “Remember Alderaan.” The under-jumpsuit really has an Empire Strikes Back vibe to it. But overall, she looks like the queen of the Tantive IV troopers.
The costumes of The Force Awakens are very much back to basics. All the lead characters have very simple designs. Unlike Return of the Jedi or a complex film like The Phantom Menace, the designs are very much like those from The Empire Strikes Back. Richard Marquand didn’t like the costumes for The Empire Strikes Back and you’ll notice they change drastically in look and feel after that. Conceptually, I saw a lot of Return of the Jedi making its way into the costumes, but in terms of photographs, its looking very basic and well done. I don’t feel there’s a right way to do this, just the director’s preference and Abrams appears to prefer the simple designs. So cosplayers are going to be really happy about that!
I was telling a friend just the other day that seeing an older Leia was both really cool and really weird at the same time. It was like seeing a family member you adored when you were a kid and then seeing them again as an elder adult. Its a lot of things looking at her now. Its reassuring, neat, shocking, and exciting. Leia is back. Chewbacca is back. Han Solo is back. Its really kind of amazing. However, I do think there will be those that have some cognitive dissonance. Like that little boy in Flight of the Navigator that travels into the future to see his parents old, there’s going to be some contradictory feelings there. This isn’t Princess Leia at 25. This is Leia at 58 years old. She looks great, she looks cool and she’s back. She doesn’t look like royalty, or Mon Mothma, or a senator. She looks like a woman of action that never slowed down.
Now, who is going to go to dinner with me tomorrow? I need to see Luke Skywalker.
If I have some free time, I’ll try and sketch the costumes up for you guys.