Star Wars -6yr- Bday Director Makes New Movie
Noel in Rialto, Ca, USA
My son has always said he has so many Star Wars ideas in his head, he just has to make more Star Wars movies to have all of his visions become real. Since George Lucas will not be making Episode VII, my son decided to make his first movie with the help of his friends at his 6th birthday party. His movie was titled, "The Return of Anakin." My son was allowed to see parts of Episode VI, Anakin's transformation into Darth Vader, and was very disturbed that Anakin decided to turn evil.
My son wrote out 18 scenes for his movie that involved Anakin faced with making a choice toward the Dark Side but choosing to support the jedis instead. We storyboarded his ideas, and he wrote the short dialogue for each scene. Thirty of my sons friends from school and karate and numerous cousins were all to be in the film. Because of the wide range of ages, we needed a script that would include everyone and would be easy enough to remember. For costumes, my son dressed as Anakin and the rest of the guests dressed in Darth Vader capes we found on clearance at Target for $1.74. We also had paper Darth Vader masks for the kids to wear (found in the party section at Target.)
My son wrote that Darth Sidius had built an army of Siths who looked like Darth Vader and wanted Anakin to lead this army of Vader lookalikes. Instead of giving in to his desire for power, Anakin pushes Darth Sidius near the lava.(A less gruesome choice than the original) Anakin is redeemed when he hear Padme behind him telling him he is going to be a daddy, and he walks away with her hand- in-hand. In the next scenen, Sidius is saved by a trooper; Luke and Leia are then born juxtaposed to a scene of a medic droid piecing Sidius back together. The last scene is Sidius becoming Darth Vader, and Anakin joyfully playing with his kids.
For a backdrop, my son and I painted a lava scene on white paper about 6 feet long. My son had his most dramatic friend become Sidius and gave him the dialogue ahead of time. Most of the guests did not have speaking parts and play-acted the fighting scene between the jedis and Siths.
The invitations were handcrafted on black cardstock with squares punched down the sides to look like a movie reel. On the front, we printed out a picture of Star Wars legos characters with lightsabers up with a looming Vader head in the background. The next frame said "-----(Our son's name) Limited presents...the Return of Anakin." On the back, we formatted the text from a size 7 to 18 to look like the opening text of the "Star Wars" films. and it read, "In a galaxy not so far away, on the day of (date), in the year of ----, a baby boy was born. From the beginning, his energy drew the attention of the jedi council, who named him the chosen one. In the five years that followed his birth, young jedi _____________ (our son's name) has been learning the powers of the force. Recently though, the jedi knights have felt a strong disturbance in the force, a disturbance generated by the Dark Side...Many jedi knights have been lost. The very future of the jedi order is now in jeopardy.
The jedi coucil has called upon young padawan to seek out future jedi. Your young padawan's presence is requested to complete jedi training on (date of party). The trials will begin promptly at (time) at the (place) system of the (place) galaxy, (city) docking bay. Please advise the jedi council as soon as possible (RSVP info) as to whether your young padawan will accept the challenge of the trials. May the force be with you." It was printed out in red ink with the overall size of the invitation being 5.5 x 6.5 to fit in standard size envelope. We included a clapboard made on back cardstock, white pen, and a silver brad to move the lever up and down to include info about gift ideas.
At the party, we decorated with movie reel centerpieces (orientaltrading.com) and cardboard standups of Darth Vader, Yoda, Luke, Leia, Anakin, and Padme that talked when you walked by. (found online) We also had an EZUp set up as the dress up tent. It included inspiring posters we made such as "Do or do not. There is no try." that had a picture of yoda throwing the force. We also had a picture of Darth Vader saying "May the Force Be with You." My husband helped the kids dress in their costumes while their parents went over their lines with them if they had any. Before we started filming, the kids enjoyed running around in costume playing lightsabers purchased at the Dollar Tree (they actually came with batteries and made sounds and lit up. Not bad for a buck.)
When it was time to film, my son directed the actors to their spots and took the camera in his hands. We had two other people filming at different angles as well. He used his actual clapboard (a professional one found online) to mark each scene and a megaphone to yell "Action!" He loved playing the part of director and watching his ideas become a virtual reality. When the movie was finished, we had sandwiches and yoda soda (seven up, green punch, and lime ice cream.) My son sat in his personalized Director's Chair and opened his presents while everyone feasted on pop corn.
For a cake, we made a lava chocolate cake complete with an exploding volcano that spewed red pudding. (set up found online) Obi Wan and Anaking action figures were poised in fighting stance to the side of the volcano. The kids loved it! Our last activity was finding the internal secrets of R2D2. The kids used their lightsabers to break open an R2D2 pinata filled with tons of Star Wars pez dispensers, stickers, trading cards, pencils, and other toy goodies rather than candy. At the end of the party, we called each of the kids up to receive a certificate that read "Master Jedi________(name of guest) is a galactic hero for saving the universe from the stronghold of the Dark Side. May s/he continue to make choices that bring peace and goodness to our planet."
We then took a group picture that was used on the Thank You picture frame cards (black card stock with a 3D cut out that read "May the Force Be With You" attached to the bottom of the group photo and a picture of a Yoda Star Wars legos character (found on internet.) Instead of a goodie bag, we gave each guest an M and M stuffed jedi found clearenced at Target for $1.74. With the Thank You cards, we also sent home a DVD of the actual movie that our son had made using film editing equipment on our IMAC computer. Overall, out of all of our theme parties we have done, this party was our favorite because our son was able to make one of his childhood dreams come true.
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