The 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special. What could be the most infamous piece of film in history. There have been some bad creations over the years to be sure, but few if any can match the ‘quality’ of the Holiday Special. And as they say: Like a bad penny it keeps turning up. George Lucas tried to ban it. You can’t buy it on DVD. You can’t stream it, and you can’t find it anywhere (short of the internet and pirated copies at Comicons). So what is the one thing collectors seek out the most?
Copies of the Holiday Special of course. Mark Hamill recently talked virtually with the Dean of the University of Southern California’s USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism Willow Bay, and gave his take on the worlds greatest disaster film.
Mark Hamill saw the writing on the wall and refused to do it, but George called him and begged him to keep the franchise alive. Here is how Hamill recalled the call: “When I read the script, I said I’m not doing this,” Hamill said. “[Lucas] had to call me and say, ‘Please, do this.’
You’ve got to remember. This was the Christmas of ’78, a year and a half after [‘Star Wars: A New Hope’] came out. When he called me and he said, ‘Well, I heard you don’t want to do it,’ I said, ‘It’s terrible! It’s not ‘Star Wars.’ It’s like a Bob Hope special.
He said, ‘Well, we really need to do this for the merchandisers and keep the product alive in people’s minds. Do me a favor,'” Hamill continued. “And, of course, I’d do anything for George.Mark Hamill
Hamill Talks Holiday Special – The Mistake You Cannont Escape
They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Lucas nailed the merchandising aspect of Star Wars, but he missed the galaxy when it came to the Holiday Special. Lucas may have made a few mistakes in his film career, but the Holiday Special remains the one he runs from the fastest. Hamill went on to describe Lucas’ feelings on the blunder:
He’s never lived it down. He once said, ‘If I could find every copy of that holiday special, I’d smash them with a hammer,’ . I said, ‘George, we should own that because it shows that everybody’s fallible. Everybody makes mistakes.’Mark Hamill
As bad as it may have been, it burned itself into the brains of those who watched it forever. How does one forget little Lumpy, Itchy’s wookiee porn, Bea Arthur’s bar closing song and lets all say it together now – stir-whip, stir-whip, whip, whip, stir! FASTER NOW – Stir-whip, stir-whip….
If you have not checked out the Star Wars Holiday Special every fan needs to watch it at least once. (Restraints may be required to avoid fleeing the scene).