15 things you might not know about Star Wars

It’s that day of the year again. May 4th, when we can all unleash our inner geek and express just how much we love Star Wars. This year is particularly special, as we count down the days to Episode VII – The Force Awakens! Though we still have a little bit of a wait ahead of us, it never hurts to go back to our favorite movies again. And that’s exactly what we’re doing this Star Wars Day. If you, too, have re-watched the films endless number of times, you know that there’s so many new things to discover every time. And to celebrate Star Wars Day 2015, here are 15 things you didn’t know about the franchise:

1. We’ve all asked our parents for some seemingly outrageous things, ranging from ponies to our favorite boy bands. When you’re George Lucas‘ daughters, these demands aren’t so over-the-top after all.

At his daughters’ request, George Lucas included an NSYNC cameo in Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones. Sadly, the director had to say Bye Bye Bye to the scene on the cutting room floor.

2. From restaurants to songs, a lot of things have been named after Star Wars. One thing you wouldn’t expect? Drugs. A brand of marijuana is actually called Princess Leia. Carrie Fisher found out about it when her daughter’s boyfriend tried to get a discount on the drug!

3. Miss Piggy and Yoda are not characters we tend to associate with each other. However, both characters were voiced by Frank Oz, who is also the voice of Fozzie Bear on The Muppet Show!

4. Chewbacca was inspired by George Lucas‘ dog, Indiana. But that’s not all! The filmmaker’s furry friend also inspired the name for the iconic character, Indiana Jones.

5. It takes a village to raise a child… And to bring Darth Vader to life. The iconic character has been portrayed by David ProwseBob AndersonC. Andrew NelsonHayden ChristensenSebastian Shaw and Jake Lloyd.

6. Han Solo’s character was based on Francis Ford Coppola, who directed The Godfather.

7. We loved Samuel L. Jackson‘s portrayal of Mace Windu. However, Mace was almost played by Tupac Shakur, who also auditioned for the part!

8. Other actors who were almost cast include Karen AllenJodie Foster and Cindy Williams as Princess Leia.

As for Han Solo, he was almost played by Nick NolteAl Pacino and Kurt Russell!

9. R2D2 got his name from the filmmaking term announcing the reel and dialogue numbers for each scene. So, "Reel 2, Dialogue 2" became R2D2!

10. Love TerminatorTitanic or Avatar? You can thank George Lucas for them!

James Cameron, who was a truck driver, was so profoundly moved by Star Wars that he quit his job and started pursuing filmmaking and VFX. Aren’t you glad he did?

11. If you’re planning on holidaying in the South Pacific Island of Niue, you can put all your Star Wars collectibles to some good use! Limited edition Star Wars coins are accepted as real currency in Niue!

12. Though he is only referred to by his first name, Yoda’s full name is actually Minch Yoda. However, Lucas wanted to set him apart and show his great power by having him referred to as just "Yoda".

13. Sets constructed for the fictional desert, Tatooine, can still be found in the Tunisian town of Tataouine. What’s interesting, though, is that some of the buildings constructed for the film are still used by Tunisian locals!

14. When sets were built for Episode I: The Phantom Menace, the crew tried to make sure that they were tall enough for the actors. However, they forgot to factor in Liam Neeson who, at 6’4", was just a little too tall for the sets! All the door frames were then rebuilt for Qui-Gon Jinn, increasing the production cost by a whopping $150,000!

15. How many toes is Yoda really supposed to have? We’ll never know! Though he has three toes in Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, the Jedi Master has an extra toe in The Empire Strikes Back and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith!

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