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'Empire Strikes Back' 40th anniversary video reveals never before seen bloopers and outtakes

Tom Beasley
·Contributor
·2-min read
Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill on the set of 'Empire Strikes Back'. (Credit: Lucasfilm/Good Morning America)
Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill on the set of 'Empire Strikes Back'. (Credit: Lucasfilm/Good Morning America)

Lucasfilm has debuted some rare footage from Star Wars sequel Empire Strikes Back in order to mark the 40th anniversary of the classic space opera.

The seven-minute featurette reveals some of the troubles faced by the production while filming scenes for the opening on the ice planet Hoth, where the elements proved to be a nightmare for all involved.

Read more: George Lucas pays tribute to Darth Vader star Dave Prowse

The video also shines a light on the bond between Harrison Ford and the late Carrie Fisher, as well as interview contributions from stars including Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels and Billy Dee Williams.

Interestingly, there’s also footage of Hamill preparing for his lightsaber duels with Darth Vader in the movie, which the actor claims he spent most of his time between takes perfecting.

The 1980 Star Wars sequel, directed by Irvin Kershner, has been in the spotlight throughout 2020 by virtue of anniversary celebrations.

In fact, it even topped the UK box office back in July after the reopening of cinemas following the country’s first national coronavirus lockdown.

Read more: Iconic lightsabers heading for auction

The behind the scenes video features Hamill theorising about why the sequel has endured so well and is frequently still ranked as the best Star Wars movie ever made.

He said: “Usually when you do a sequel, they want to just repeat the experience and that would mean that the second film would end with exhilaration and triumph.

Mark Hamill and R2-D2 on the set of 'Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back', directed by Irvin Kershner. (Photo by Lucasfilm/Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)
Mark Hamill and R2-D2 on the set of 'Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back', directed by Irvin Kershner. (Photo by Lucasfilm/Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)

“It was so daring. I don't think we were ever able to be that surprising again because it was deeper, it was more cerebral, it was more spiritual and the fact that we faced defeat at the end.”

Read more: Lucas reflects on “painful” Disney sale

Meanwhile, the Star Wars universe continues to expand, with several brand new projects from the galaxy far, far away announced by Disney during its recent Investor Day.

Fans are also able to get their fix of new stuff right now, as this week marks the final episode of season two of The Mandalorian.

Watch: Mark Hamill reveals rare Empire Strikes Back photos