As part of a promotional blitz to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Hollywood icon “Star Wars”, Mattel has an all new line of Star Wars action figures in stores today. Called the “Behind the Scenes: Episode 4” figures, the new line aims to “complete the experience that has defined a generation.” With over sixty figures and three large action playsets, the collection is sure to find a home with both casual fans and collectors alike.
“We’ve aimed to have the most realistic playsets possible, including duplicating 1970s technology in the toy cameras and replicating actual costumes from that time, bell bottoms, wide collars, and all.” Said Mattel VP of Collectibles Sid Thrift. “But I’m most proud of the three-level ‘Fox Studios Action Set.’ It’s got a soundstage on the bottom level, star’s rooms on the middle level, and up top there’s a boardroom for budget meetings. Plus, it comes with the limited edition “George Lucas in Suit” action figure for his big meetings with Fox executives.”
Based on the behind-the-scenes book by J.W. Rinzler, the toy makers sought for the utmost realism. “Mr. Rinzler worked very closely with our artists,” Said Thrift. “We didn’t want to have a whole bunch of Admiral Akbar and third-drunk-on-the-left type figures that nobody knows. When you buy Randy the Cameraman, you’ll be able to find him credited in the film and in the background of the actual photos from the set. That’s what people want.”
Mattel has also released a limited number of “Gold Box” sets that commemorate famous gaffes in the film, like actor Mark Hammel yelling “Carrie!” after the destruction of the Death Star or George Lucas firing a gopher for getting him coffee without sufficient cream. There are 15 gold box collections in all, each one with a limited production of only six hundred thousand copies.
Internet rumors of a “Carrie Fisher Dressing Room Mishap” figure were false, Thrift told reporters.
Asked about future sets for other films, Thrift said they were in negotiation with Lucasfilms for the “Behind the Scenes” figures for other Star Wars episodes, but demands from Lucas were holding up progress. “We just don’t think there’s a market for ‘George Lucas, Greatest Director Ever’ figures and they’ve balked at the ‘Lucas the Lazy Scriptwriter’ figure for Episodes 1 to 3, so I’m not sure we’ll make much progress on the others.”