Luke, I’m Playing Your Father

Unlike holders of certain deep-space franchises, Lucasfilm is quite encouraging of all fan-generated apocrypha set in a galaxy far, far away. Inspired, perhaps, by the 1977 short film Hardware Wars, in which a cassette player roams through space, Lucasfilm even sponsors the Official Star Wars Fan Film Awards (it gave Hardware Wars the Pioneer Award in 2003). It seems if the Force is with you, almost anything goes. But the Dark Room’s Jim Fourniadis — the man who brought us adaptations of Night of the Living Dead, Duck Soup, and Young Frankenstein — is something of a Star Wars purist. Despite the rather severe limitations of his budget and milieu, Fourniadis did not want to turn Star Wars: Live on Stage! into a low-budget parody. Of course, despite his insistence that only sanctioned lightsaber collectibles be used, certain liberties had to be taken: Two of the Imperial Stormtroopers help move the story along like the Dark Side’s own Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, and C3PO is not exactly autonomous (you may notice “TRASH” embossed on his shiny faceplate). But, as usual, the tiny Dark Room has turned its liabilities into assets. Stripped of blockbuster flash and imbued with some true-to-life foibles (an innovative technology like the Death Star is bound to have a few bugs), it’s quite easy to see why this story helped sculpt our generation.
Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m. Starts: Dec. 5. Continues through Dec. 27, 2008

 
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