The Sideshow

‘Star Wars’ fans’ short film to air as national TV commercial

Eric Pfeiffer
The Sideshow

The "Star Wars" saga is so ingrained in our collective consciousness that even a potato chip container is enough to spawn some hilarious and impressive fan films.

A few months ago, Pringles potato chips and Lucasfilm asked fans to create an original short film set in the Star Wars universe using the snack food as a centerpiece.

“We looked for creativity that was rooted in a deep appreciation of the 'Star Wars' movies and the characters—references and details that could only come from a fan, and that could best be appreciated by other fans,” Lucasfilm’s Global Integrated Promotions Manager Kelli Martin told Yahoo News.

Now, many "Star Wars" fans will roll their eyes at the idea of using their beloved franchise to sell potato chips. And to be sure, the theme has been worn thin in recent years. Nearly everyone with an Internet connection has their own take—a Yoda pun here, a Darth Vader reference there. There’s so much "Star Wars" shoved in our faces these days that it’s hard for anything to feel fresh.

But the fans in this contest actually pulled it off. And part of the credit has to go to Lucasfilm, which selected the finalists that best represented "Star Wars."

The winning entry was “Jim vs. Vader,” which reimagined the "Star Wars" villain as an overbearing office manager. The video has received 150,000 page views since it was first posted in May, along with the other contest finalists.

“It's been a bit of a roller-coaster ride of emotions, and by mid-June we had convinced ourselves that we weren't going to win,” said Erik Beck, whose team Indie Machines, produced the winning video.

“We're also honored at how many people commented and shared the video,” Beck told Yahoo News. “No way we would have won without all their support.”

And as part of their prize for winning the contest, Beck and his team will have their video aired as a national commercial by Pringles this fall.

The other finalists included a video about a vengeful kid who had his Pringles stolen and a group of friends who methodically re-create the first "Star Wars" film using homemade props, including their potato chip container.

“Fan films have been part of the 'Star Wars' experience from the very start,” Martin told Yahoo. “Beginning most famously with ‘Hardware Wars’ in 1978, George Lucas set out to inspire young people to pursue their dreams with 'Star Wars,' and often that dream is to be a filmmaker.”

The other finalist videos can be seen here.

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