back to article Star Wars exec: These ARE THE DROIDS I was LOOKING FOR

The next Star Wars movie will see the return of droid favourite R2-D2, who will be built for the film by two Brit fans who are in a Star Wars robot-building club. JJ Abrams, Lee Towersey, Oliver Steeples, Kathleen Kennedy and R2-D2 JJ Abrams, Lee Towersey, Oliver Steeples, Kathleen Kennedy and R2-D2 behind the scenes at …


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  1. Admiral Grace Hopper
    Thumb Up


    I genuinely wish that I had known of the existence of the R2-D2 Builders Club before now. This sort of thing should be encouraged at every opportunity.

    1. Peter2 Silver badge

      Re: Applause!

      Really? That's nothing. Real men build usable combat lightsabers. ;)

      Google "the custom saber shop" if your handy with a soldering iron or "Ultrasabers" if your a helpless user type who can't deal with making the sort of electronic circuits that you were taught at primary school.

      Making Lightsabers is great fun, using them more so. Suffice to say that Martial Arts groups aren't as good as you might think. They have really serious trouble dealing with people who don't fight using the same martial art they were trained in so even if you don't have some martial arts training you have a sporting chance as long as what you do is a lot different from Kendo etc. Saber play is also surprisingly popular with non-geeks and a great way to convert such heathens. ;)

      Or you could get into the choreography scene, stick lightsaber choreography competition into youtube for a fun selection of vids.

      1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

        Re: Martial Arts groups aren't as good as you might think

        You obviously haven't met the good ones ;) That said, generally I can agree with you, but I think I know why.

        Karate is not what you see on TV. One of my best friends is a karateka. He told me that getting a recruit to continue training after the third year is a problem, because the first two years are devoted to basics, and the third year you actually carry out the attacks.

        That means you get pummeled, and that means you get hurt. People don't like getting hurt, so they abandon. Some clubs don't like losing people, so they avoid forcing them to get hurt. But if they do that, the students don't learn to avoid attacks properly, and don't carry them out properly.

        I train in Aikido, a martial art devoted to defense only. We have trouble getting people to attack properly (yes, even if you train defensively, you still have to defend against an attack) because students are generally afraid of hurting their partners. That is normal human behavior. It takes some time (you can count that in years) for a normal person to understand that by holding back their attack, they are putting you in danger and risking more hurt than if they would actually attack properly.

        I think that most people don't like hurting others, so they do not attack well, so the partner cannot properly learn to defend/block.

        That is most likely why most Martial Arts students are not all that impressive.

        1. Peter2 Silver badge

          Re: Martial Arts groups aren't as good as you might think

          Oh, I have a chap who teaches sword seminars running a club locally. That sort of fight tends to be over very, very quickly. Sword fights last less time the better the people involved are, and against true experts a battle tends to be over with a single stroke one side or the other, depending on who moves fastest and does something the other isn't expecting.

          There is certainly a point with that, a the hardwood training swords most places use could inflict real injury if used with full strength against somebody not wearing protection. A saber however is a tube of polycarbonate, weighing virtually nothing making it a lot harder to inflict injury as long as your wearing something with padding. I don't hesitate to go as hard and fast as I can, because I know from experience I can't hurt somebody beyond a bruise even if they aren't wearing protection, where as a lump of lumber probably could stove somebodies ribs in with the same moves.

  2. hplasm Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    Lucky Barstands!

    Talk about dream jobs...

  3. andy gibson

    They turned me down for the job

    Can't think why:

    1. VinceH Silver badge

      Re: They turned me down for the job

      I don't understand, either. That's the most realistic looking R2-D2 model I've ever seen. Fantastic. You deserve a pint.

  4. Sandpit

    Smart PR move

    Hiring dedicated fans to work on the film is a smart PR move that can only add credebility to the franchise, something that will add $$$ to the bottom line in the end.

    1. Cliff

      Re: Smart PR move

      Absolutely - and completely builds press disassociating these films from the CGI/greenscreen/soulless nasties we saw in the last three.

    2. Chozo

      Re: Smart PR move

      It's a shame the full scale Millennium Falcon is not yet ready..

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Smart PR move

      It's a good sign, nice to see a return to real props and effects.

      I have more hope (maybe not a new hope) for this film than I do for the Robocop remake, that looks soul-less and lacking satire.

      1. Dave 126 Silver badge

        Re: Smart PR move

        I hope it's good, because of the cast - Gary Oldman, Michael K Williams, Samuel L Jackson - but it probably won't be. On the bright side, the bad press surrounding this (and the remake of Total Recall) appears to have killed the mooted remake of Starship Troopers, another Paul Verhoeven classic.

        Oh, if you like the satire, and don't mind a limited effects budget, Starship Troopers 3 has the tongue in cheek attitude (and Johnny Rico) of the first film.

        I would say I'd like to see another satirical sci-fi Verhoeven film, but then recent efforts by fellow 1980 sci-fi directors J. Cameron and R. Scott have been disappointing / infuriating.

        1. JLV Silver badge

          > I'd like to see another satirical sci-fi Verhoeven film

          If you don't mind an older (1985), medieval, Verhoeven film, I nominate Flesh & Blood. I don't know if satyrical is exactly the term, but it's subversive enough ;-)

          Basic Instinct aside, Verhoeven, like Besson, didn't work at his full potential in Hollywood. Based on Black Book, I'd say he's back in form in Holland.

    4. John Sanders

      Re: Smart PR move

      Yes, the next best thing would be to let someone with a clue about what makes starwars great write a decent story.

      1. Tom 35 Silver badge

        write a decent story

        They will get the writing team on that right away. They will make sure it has something for everyone, and doesn't offend anyone. They just need to work Tinkerbell into the plot.

  5. Dave 126 Silver badge


    I've never heard of the R2D2 Makers Club either, though I did stumble on a YouTube video the other day of a man making his own Iron Man outfit. (I was making something completely different, but thought his technique of preparing polysterene with three coats of PVA before applying car body filler - otherwise it melts - might be useful)

    The video links to his website and it would seem there are worse places to go to if you want to build an R2-D2 - he shares his tips on techniques and materials, using foams, plastics, 3D printing, electronics etc. He is also a Raspberry Pi user, though it seems he hasn't had much of chance to play with yet.

  6. Haku

    Hell yeah!

    We don't need no stinkin' CGI R2-D2!

  7. sorry, what?

    Camera position for the photo in the article

    I guess the shot was taken by Chewbacca...

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ghost in the movie ?

    Samuel L Jackson in this episode, thought he got killed in Ep3 by the Emperor ?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Ghost in the movie ?

      Be mindful of your training, assumptions lead to mistakes, which lead to anger which... you get the picture.

      You only see him lose an arm then fly out the window in a ball of electricity. Since Anakin managed to grab onto a ship mid fall, and Luke survived The Emperor's lightning, there's every possibility he did survive.

    2. Haku

      Re: Ghost in the movie ?

      We can only hope he survived because Jar-Jar Binks broke his fall.

    3. Tom 35 Silver badge

      Re: Ghost in the movie ?

      They can just go back and edit that out.

      1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

        They most likely will, at some point.

  9. Arthur Kater :-D ☺

    For Rent

    Just finished building my full-scale fully operational Dead Star. It's in my backyard crushing 49 city blocks. Anyone?

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