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'Star Wars' Turns 35 On Friday


Now let's talk about another icon, one with a light saber. Tomorrow marks the anniversary of "Star Wars." Thirty-five years ago, moviegoers first paid to see a tale from a long time ago in a galaxy far away.


It changed the life of John Booth, author of "Collect All 21: Memoirs of a Star Wars Geek."

JOHN BOOTH: There were no space movies to me before "Star Wars."

INSKEEP: And then came "Star Wars 1."

MONTAGNE: Actually, Steve, that's "Star Wars 4."

INSKEEP: Or one. The movie exploded across American culture, influenced other films, spawned five sequels and prequels that are confusingly numbered, and lasted long enough for John Booth to share his childhood obsession with his daughter.

MONTAGNE: In his house, it's normal to use a Jedi mind control trick to try to get out of chores.

BOOTH: You don't need to have me mow the lawn this afternoon. I don't need to go to the grocery store this afternoon. And you can't see it but am doing that Jedi hand wave thing.

MONTAGNE: Just as Obi-Wan Kenobi does in a tight spot


ALEC GUINNESS: (as Obi-Wan Kenobi) You don't need to see his identification.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (as Stormtrooper) We don't need to see his identification.

GUINNESS: (as Obi-Wan Kenobi) These aren't the droids you're looking for.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (as Stormtrooper) These aren't the droids we're looking for.

MONTAGNE: "Star Wars" still has the power to engage people's imaginations. We mentioned the movie on MORNING EDITION's Twitter feed. Then another Twitter feed called the Hash Tag Game invited tweets that mix "Star Wars" with public radio.

INSKEEP: The many responses include: These are not the tote bags you're looking for.

MONTAGNE: Obi-wan Poggioli.

INSKEEP: Prairie Cloned Companion.

MONTAGNE: And may Deford be with you.


MONTAGNE: Renee Montagne I am.

INSKEEP: Steve Inskeep also. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.