Empire Strikes Back 40th Anniversary Poster
Empire Strikes Back 40th Anniversary Poster

Happy Anniversary, Star Wars: The Empire Strike Back! On May 21st, 1980 the second Star Wars movie was released in theatres and is still considered by most to be the best film in the franchise. In honor of this important milestone, Lucasfilm has been celebrating the occasion in various ways. At the beginning of the year, they honored the fact that John Williams began scoring the film 40 years ago. Now, they’ve taken to social media to share a brand new poster, which we’re dying to hang on our walls.

“Impressive. Most impressive. Happy 40th anniversary, #TheEmpireStrikesBack! We’re celebrating with this incredible new poster art by artist @Cakes_Comics. What’s your favorite ESB moment? #ESB40,” @StarWars tweeted. The artist is Matt Ferguson, an art and poster designer who has worked with Marvel as well as other Disney projects in addition to Star Wars. He is also the co-owner/creative director at @VicePressnews. You can check out the poster in the tweet below:

Earlier this week, StarWars.com looked back at George Lucas witnessing how the final scene played out after the film landed in select theaters. The director found a way to tweak the ending before the rest of the world saw it. The film first debuted in 70mm in more than 100 theaters on May 21, 1980, with its 35mm release not happening until June 18th. In the final scene in which Luke, Leia, C-3PO, and R2-D2 are on the medical frigate while Lando and Chewbacca are on the Millennium Falcon, Lucas thought the geography of the sequences was confusing as it played out in that initial release in regards to where all the characters were. Lucas then contacted the film’s editor and the ILM team to let them know they needed to add some shots to help clarify the sequence before the film went wide. You can head to StarWars.com to see the full breakdown of the slight differences between that initial 70mm release and the modifications made for its 35mm release.

Recently, C-3PO actor Anthony Daniels took to Twitter to reveal that Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back was his favorite move in the franchise. This came after years of considering the first Star Wars as his favorite, but a recent rewatch gave the actor a newfound appreciation for the sequel. You can read his thoughts here.

The entire Skywalker Saga is currently streaming on Disney+.

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