With The Force Awakens releasing this weekend, I thought it was about time to dig up this video and share it with the internet. I uploaded it to YouTube a year ago and now I don’t remember why I hadn’t made it public before now.
I had the idea that I could tape a ruler to the front of the camcorder and then use that to attach Legos a few inches in front of the lens. Building a story was secondary; it came only out of the necessity for showing off the special effect. And, apparently, building a title sequence was tertiary (feel free to skip the first 30 seconds).
Also featured: killer voice-over work, spot-on sound effects, the sweetest Mos Eisley set, and our sponsor Scotch Tape.
I used my dad’s Sony Hi8 camcorder to shoot it. It was 1999 and I edited it with a VCR and a CD player that had analog audio out. These were the days before digital editing was widely available to the masses; with my setup, any scenes with music had to be shot in sequence.
Over halfway into making the video, I realized that the closer I held the camera to the ground, the cooler it looked. There are a few quick shots toward the end where the speeders are dragging through the grass. I like those.
My dad’s camcorder had a button you could hold down for playback review in reverse, which enabled the Luke-landing-on-the-other-speeder shot. That part looked really smooth on the original final video tape. Sadly, with time or whatever, this version has the bad VCR tracking thing going on. Oh well.
It took a day and a half to shoot. If you were to drive by my house on one of those two days, you’d see a 17-year-old in flip flops, shorts, and a tank top scurrying around his yard as fast as a person can go while hunched over 90 degrees holding a camera just above the ground. My back got a little sore and I remember I didn’t eat anything until 4pm on the longer of those two days–I only ran inside for two huge glasses of water at some point and then ran back out. That’s how you know you’re doing something you enjoy, right? Thanks to anyone who has ever been supportive of me and my fun little hobby.