May the Fourth Be With You

Brian Fulton, The Times-Tribune, Scranton, Pa.
·2 min read

May 4—May 1999

A long time ago at a movie theater in Scranton, young Jedi knights, Rebel fighters and Sith apprentices lined up along Lackawanna Avenue to buy tickets for the local premiere of "Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace."

Fans started queuing at United Artists Theatre, Lackawanna Avenue, on May 11, and tickets went on sale the following day at 3 p.m. Tickets at United Artists Theatres in Scranton and Dickson City cost $7 for adults and $5 for children, seniors and matinees.

"The Phantom Menace," the first new "Star Wars" film in 16 years and a prequel to the original trilogy, opened May 19. It introduced audiences to a young Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi and the trouble starting to brew within the Galactic Republic. Despite mixed reviews, the film made $431 million at the box office, according to Rottentomatoes.com.

On Thursday, Dec. 15, 2016, another chapter begins with the opening of "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story." This film takes place between the action of "Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith" and "Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope." It centers on a group of Rebels tasked with stealing plans for the Empire's Death Star, according to Starwars.com.

Updated — Since Dec. 15, 2016, there has been several more stories in the Star Wars galaxy. On Dec. 17, 2017, there was "Episode VIII — The Last Jedi" and two years later the final film in the Skywalker Saga — "Episode IX — The Rise of Skywalker" on Dec. 20, 2019. In addition to these two film, there was another stand alone story called "Solo" that was came out on May 25, 2018.

On November 12, 2019, the new streaming service Disney+ premiered a new Star Wars story — "The Mandalorian." This story is set in the time between "Return of Jedi" and "The Force Awakens."

All of Star Wars movies plus more content is available on the streaming service — Disney+.

Also you may want to Google 'Star Wars' today for a surprise.

May the Fourth Be With You.

Brian Fulton

Brian Fulton has been the librarian at The Times-Tribune for the past 15 years. On his blog, Historically Hip, he writes about the great concerts, plays/musicals and celebrity happenings that have taken place throughout NEPA. He is also the co-host of the local history podcast, Historically Hip. He competed and was crowned grand champion on an episode of NPR quiz show "Ask Me Another." Contact: bfulton@timesshamrock.com; 570-348-9140; or @TTPagesPast