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Tuesday, February 28, 2006

New Art!

I've been wanting to draw an original Twi-lek and decided to combine that with a self portrait. I'm not a self portrait liker (probably why I chose the hybrid), if it's OF myself that is but it's an artists duty to render a portrait of themselves at different points in their life.

The photo reference is a picture taken of me by my friends Peter and Pieter. We spent an all-nighter (11 pm - 6 am) dressing ME up in different costumes and make-up styles (though Twi-lek was not one of them) and taking photos.
We had a blast.

Take it easy on me guys and gals

Here it be...the "totally doesn't look like me" me...
Twi-lek self portrait


5 comments digested to 1

Monday, February 27, 2006

New Art!

As per a request earlier this afternoon:

Sio Bibble
...sorry it wasn't up earlier, I scanned it at 4 pm but got to doing something else and totally forgot about it.

And this one:
William Hootkins Enjoy!

More tomorrow.

8 comments digested to 1

Actor and Site Updates!

Blog and Site update!

Hope you had a pleasant weekend. I'll get right to it:

Edward Asner (Jabba the Hutt in the ROTJ radio drama) reminder. Asner has only a few shows left in The Great Tennessee Monkey Trial left in Los Angeles (March 1 - 5). The production which has been on an all-city tour is produced by LA Theatre Works which has enjoyed a great following via radio broadcasting of their performances.
The productions have starred numerous Star Wars alum:
Jerry Hardin, Philip Proctor, Raphael Sbarge, Robert Machray, Simon Templeman, Samantha Bennett, Carolyn Seymour, Arye Gross, William Morgan Sheppard, Martin Jarvis, Ed Begley Jr., Yeardley Smith, Adam Arkin, John Lithgow, André Sogliuzzo, Natalija Nogulich, Alistair Duncan, David Warner and David Clennon.

LA Theatre Works at Skirball Cultural Center 2701 Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles
Wed through Friday at 8 pmSat 3 pm Sunday 2:30 pm$25 - $45

The tour will be resumed in April of 2007.

Ayesha Dharker is filming Outsourced in Mumbai, India as well as The Contest. Both are due out this year (2006). Outsourced is a comedy starring Vince Vaughn. Two workers try to get their jobs back after they have been outsourced. Dharker plays Asha in the upcoming film.

The Contest is a comedy starring Indian comedic actress Shabana Amzi.

Dharker's latest release, Colour Me Kubrick, also starred the late William Hootkins (Jek Porkins) and was released late last year (2005).

Nick Jameson (voices characters, including Palpatine, in 19 different Star Wars video games and voice Palpatine in Star Wars: Dark Empire the audio book) reminder. Jameson will once again star as Yuri Suvarov the Russian President in the TV series 24, the episode airs on March 6, 2006.

Liam Neeson (Qui-Gon Jinn - PT) reminder. Neeson is lending his voice talents to PBS's Eugene O'Neill: A Documentary Film. This airs on your local PBS station on March 29, 2006.

Updates to existing actors in the STAR WARS ACTORS DATABASE
Clint Bajakian (update - Bio; Awards)
Guy Boyd (update - Theatre)
Jeff Coopwood (update - bio pic)
Ayesha Dharker (update - Film; TV)
Joel Edgerton (update - bio (thanks Joel!); Film)
Nonnie Griffin (update - bio and character pics; Theatre; Radio)
Roger Guenveur Smith (update - Theatre)
James Earl Jones (update - Live Performances)
George Lucas (update - Awards: National Technical)
Natalie Portman (update - Awards: ShoWest)
John Ratzenberger (update - Live Performances)
Robin Sachs (update - bio pic)
James Arnold Taylor (update - Video Games: Ratchet & Clank) (Thanks to DarthCharlie32!)
Jim Ward (update - Ratchet & Clank) (Thanks to DarthCharlie32!)

Newly added actors:
Thanks to Convention-Guests for the following:
Amanda Armellino
Bilu Atwal
Danielle Isaie
Louisa McGowan
Rebecca Reece
Gideon Starr
Carol Victoria
Simon Whyman

Actor Connections
Care Bears II: A New Generation (Film)
Pulp Fiction (Film)
The Batman (TV)
Samurai Jack (TV)
Video Games
Ratchet & Clank (Video Games)

Main Page

Clockwork Sniper #2 (Thanks to Tanya!)
The Darkness (Thanks to Bonnie Burton's ongoing series!)
Ethan and the Ewoks (name only and they are now Ethan and the Ewox)
Lemon Demon #2 (Thanks to Michael!) and screenshots for #1 and #2

TV K-R Robot Chicken (big thanks to John at for finding #1-9!)

LIFE>>Miscellaneous Pictures:
My own father supplied (inadvertantly) this LIFE reference during the move this week into their new home. Thanks dad!

John from Obroa-Skai sent this reference in last week. OS Wars

LMangue's Art
Sy Snootles
Lincoln (for the holiday )

As always, enjoy!

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Friday, February 24, 2006

Black History Month Part 4

It's been an extraordinarily long week. 14 hours a day with the move and then home to try to work, and TRY is the operative word here. It also seems that no matter how much exercise one does before a move one is inevitably sore in places that one didn't know existed. hehe

The weather has been awesome, it's been about 75 - 80° during the days.

Here's the final section of Actor Highlights for Black History Month!

Dave Sexton (Naboo Guard - TPM) - Is fairly new to the game as far is easy-to-come-by information is concerned but he does have a game card "Naboo Guard" from the Star Wars Collectible Card Game!

Cree Summer (voice of Luminara Unduli - Clone Wars; voice of Princess Kneesaa - Ewoks animated series) - Born on July 7, 1969 in Southern California to actor/activist Don Francks and to dancer Lili (Red Eagle) but neither parent wanted Cree to be raised in the Los Angeles environment.
So, Francks, who had fallen in love with a Plains Cree reserve (reservation) in Saskatchewan, Canada called Red Pheasant, decided that he would move his family up to the reserve and live. Francks built his own mud house and that is where Summer lived for at least the first six years of her life but the Canadian Government found out they were living there tax-free and told them they had to move. So the family lived on a converted school bus, then a horse stable and then a commune called the Music Church. During this time Francks and his family would travel to North Battleford to the Bestburough Hotel for a bath, once a month. Summer didn't start school until the fourth grade.

Summer recalls having two albums which inspired her while growing up on Red Pheasant: Zoot allures by Frank Zappa and Motorcycle Michael by Lotti Golden. She was also inspired by the native Cree Pow Wow songs but also had Aretha Franklin and Dinah Washington when she spent summers with her grandmother.

Summer, with the help of her father Don Francks (voiced Umwak the Dulok Shaman in Ewoks (1985-1986) and voiced different characters in Droids), started voice-over acting and joined her first band at the age of thirteen then attended the Toronto High School for the Performing Arts until the age of sixteen (she dropped out). Two years later she moved to Los Angeles where she has lived ever since. She has put out several albums and continues to act.

Roger Guenveur Smith (voice of Bao-Dur in KOTOR II) was born on July 27, 1959 in Berkeley, CA to lawyer/New Frontier Democratic Club founder/Honorable Judge Sherman Smith Sr. and dentist Dr. Helen Smith both of whom were active with the NAACP as well as the NFD. Smith has a brother, Judge Sherman Smith Jr., and bother were raised in Los Angeles during the height of 50's and 60's civil rights struggles.

Smith starting acting in grammar school, his first experience was reading the first fifteen pages of Mark Twain's Tom Sawyer for a speech contest. But he continued acting throughout high school and into college.

Smith attended Occidental College in Los Angeles where he was an American Studies major. After graduating he earned a doctorate in American Studies (History Phd) from Yale University in New Haven, CT. It was only on a lark that Smith auditioned for Yale's Drama School and gained admission. His classmates were Angela Bassett and John Turturro. Smith was also a Thomas J. Watson Fellow at the Keskidee Arts Centre in London, England.

Smith has done several live stage productions and is most well-known for his portrayal of Huey P. Newton (black activist) in a one-man show that he toured with and garnered outstanding reviews. Smith also wrote and directed the show, called A Huey P. Newton Story, the term "wrote" is used loosely here because Smith never wrote anything down, he simply memorized all the factual data and studied Newton's mannerisms and speech patterns, mixed it all together and acted the part.

His most recent projects are I Believe in America, comes out later this year, and the stage production of Inside the Creole Mafia at the Evidence Room in Los Angeles, CA.

Smith continues to work and live in Los Angeles.

Femi Taylor Ogilvy (Oola - ROTJ, ROTJse) was born in Nigeria and was adopted by film director Richard Taylor. Her brother is fellow Star Wars alum Benedict Taylor (Fighter Pilot Bravo 2 - TPM).

Taylor is an actress, dancer and a singer who was trained at the London School of Contemporary Dance and at the Alvin Ailey School in New York. One of her first roles was that of Tantomile in the 1981 original London production of CATS with fellow Star Wars alum Brian Blessed, who played Bustopher Jones/Old Deuteronomy in the wildly popular musical.

It was in the 90's that Taylor made a move to Australia to pursue acting. Both Taylor and her brother have made numerous convention appearances.

Taylor is married to Satya Ogilvy, they have two children, Zen and Jack.

Billy Dee Williams (Lando Calrissian - ESB, ROTJ) Again, I direct you to the site for his complete bio...since most of you no doubt know quite a bit about him already.

Williams was in one of my favorite films from the 70's, Bingo Long Traveling All Stars and Motor Kings which also starred James Earl Jones.

Thanks for sticking with me this month! Attendance, as I've mentioned before, will be spotty until after the show in March. I'll try to post a little something here and there plus get some sketches out to you all!


Wednesday, February 22, 2006

New Art!

New Art!
Hello there!A few new small sketchesFirefly/Serenity










And, so it's not totally unrelated to our beloved Star Wars here's a preliminary sketch of the....

More to come.

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Sunday, February 19, 2006

Black History Month Part 3

Hello! Taking a break from the move to get the BHM out to you all.

Heading right on in!

Phil LaMarr - (voice of Gadon Thek in KOTOR) was born on January 24, 1967 in Los Angeles, CA. He graduated from Harvard and Yale (High School and University, respectively), Yale is where LaMarr was a founding member, 1985, of The Purple Crayon, which was and still is an improvisational comedy troupe on campus.

After LaMarr's graduation from Yale in 1988 he spent time training, acting and working with Second City in Chicago, IL and then coming home to work with The Groundlings in Los Angeles, CA. He also finds time to teach about improvisation and characters through workshops.

LaMarr has a gift for impressions and has been called on to voice numerous celebrities in all sorts of programs some voice impersonations include Gary Coleman, Billy Crystal, Morgan Freeman, Michael Jackson, Eddie Murphy, Sidney Poitier, Chris Rock, Will Smith and Chris Tucker to name only a few.

LaMarr may be most known in some circles for his voice work in the very popular TV series Samurai Jack (2001 - 2004) which was created by Genndy Tartakovsky (Clone Wars).
LaMarr played the title role and many other voices on the series over the 5 season run.

Upcoming projects include:
The Adventures of Brer Rabitt on video, The Happiest Day of His Life, Cook-Off! this year and Futurama in 2007.

Mary Oyaya (Luminara Unduli - PT) was born in Mombasa, Kenya, Africa to parents who worked as UN diplomats. Oyaya spent the better part of her life traveling to different corners of the globe with her parents. As a result she has experienced cultures and beliefs that varied considerably.
Oyaya holds three degrees, a Masters in International Relations, a Masters in International Social Development from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia (UNSW) and a Bachelors degree in International Relations from the United States International University, USIU. (The USIU main campus is located in Nairobi, Kenya. It was the first secular university in East Africa and after studying for two years in Nairobi had to move to San Diego to complete their degrees.) Oyaya had first hand experience in her fields of study while working abroad with refugees for several non-governmental organizations in Australia.

In addition to her skills in diplomacy, modeling and acting she speaks five languages fluently: English, Swahili, French, Swedish and Japanese; is athletic: sword fighting (Chinese martial arts), drumming, belly dancing, basketball, swimming, tai chi, yoga, cycling and Pilates.

Oyaya settled in Australia where she continues to work in acting and modeling and intends to follow in her parents' footsteps in UN diplomacy.

Quentin Pierre (Bespin Guard transporting Han Solo to Fett's ship (with Alan Harris) in ESB, stand-in for Billy Dee Williams in ROTJ) has little information circulating about him but I do know that he has been an assistant and a stand-in (double) for Morgan Freeman since the early 90's and continues to do so currently. He has been in about a dozen and a half Space: 1999 episodes.

Hugh Quarshie (Captain Panaka - TPM) was born around 1954 in Accra, Ghana, Africa. Accra is on the coast of Ghana, Ghana lies between the Ivory Coast and Togo. Quarshie was only three when he and his family moved from Ghana to Great Britain. Quarshie's father worked for the Ghanaian Government and was sent to Europe to oversee the establishment of various consulates in Central Europe and a high commission in London, Quarshie's father saw Great Britain as the mother country and that British education was prime, these beliefs helped facilitate the move to London in the late 1950's.

Quarshie was educated at Oxford where he was also the co-director of the Oxford and Cambridge Shakespeare Company. He earned degrees in politics, philosophy and economics and planned to use his talents for a career in journalism. He was hired at West Africa Magazine as a writer and editor. Fortunately, for us, Quarshie found the work incredibly dull, or as he once said, "mind-numbingly boring." It was then that he started to seriously pursue acting, which he found therapeutic.

Quarshie didn't stop at simply acting on stage, on TV or in commercials he wrote, co-directed, starred and produced plays and was the first black actor to play a Shakespearean character. It wasn't just any role either, he took over the role of Henry IV from Timothy Dalton (James Bond - The Living Daylights) for the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Quarshie lives in the UK with his wife, actress Annika Sundström, two children: Maya and Freya and continues to work steadily in film and TV. He has a continuing role as Ric Griffin in the popular series Holby City on BBC One.

Kevin Michael Richardson (K'Kruhk/Human Male Jedi Master in Clone Wars and voiced several characters in 12 different Star Wars video games) was born on October 25, 1964 in The Bronx, New York, NY.

Richardson attended Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York where he earned a BFA in Drama. He has also trained at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center in Waterford, CT and at the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts in Florida.

Richardson has a prolific career in voice acting in Los Angeles, CA.


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Friday, February 17, 2006

Delays, Delays...

Hello everyone!

I'm away from my office now and staying at the in-laws up north. I've been helping my parents move and it's been a trying week...the house they are moving from is my childhood home and a huge twinge of sadness surrounds the family and friends. It's pretty much a bittersweet affair since they are leaving a lifetime of memories, a wonderful house and friends to be closer to me and my son.

My time will be more limited this week due to unpacking at the new house and my continuing efforts to get ready for the upcoming show.

So, the following actors for Black History Month highlights:
Phil Lamarr
Mary Oyaya
Hugh Quarshie
Kevin Michael Richardson
will be delayed a day or so.

Thank you for waiting!

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Tuesday, February 14, 2006

New Art!

You may conquer with the sword,
But you are conquered with a kiss
~Daniel Heinsius (1580 - 1655) Dutch Poet

Kiss This! (Sy Snootles art pic to be added later)


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Monday, February 13, 2006

Actor and Site Updates!

The days are getting busier as I head into March and I will make decidedly fewer stops at the blogs. I will however keep up with the updates and other events to the best of my ability.

Thanks for reading!

Blog and Site update!

Diahann Carroll (Holographic Wow - SWHS) sings on the new Olivia Newton John album Stronger than Before released this year worldwide. She sings with Patti LaBelle and Beth Nielson Chapman on the song Phenomenal Women along with Olivia Newton John.

James Earl Jones (voice of Darth Vader) will star in Thurgood at the Westport County Playhouse in Westport, CT. The play, written by George Stevens Jr., is a one-man production about Thurgood Marshall, the chief Justice of the Supreme Court who died in 1991.

George Lucas (Baron Papanoida - ROTS) - Lucas and president of ILM Chrissie England were presented with the National Medal of Technology today by President Bush in the East Room of the White House. The medal of technology, established by Congress in 1980, is administered by the Commerce Department and 166 medals have been given since then.Also, Lucas talks about editing and Star Wars in the film Edge Codes. Several clips from the films are shown as well. You can watch a clip, download a five minute segment or download the entire film at

Ian McDiarmid (Palpatine - OT/PT) - Has been working in the production of Faith Healer with Ralph Fiennes. Here are some photos!.

Ewan McGregor (Obi-Wan Kenobi - PT) Received a award for Best Actor in a Musical for his leading role as Sky Masterson in Guys and Dolls which played in London. He left the role in December and the part went to actor Nigel Harman.

Liam Neeson (Qui-Gon Jinn in PT) Will perform with Holly Hunter in The Lincoln Family Album tonight at the Library of Congress - Thomas Jefferson Building, Washington, DC. The performance will mark the 197th birthday of President Abraham Lincoln.

The as yet untitled Lincoln biopic film from Steven Spielberg, that was set to star Mr. Neeson as Abraham Lincoln, has been postponed "indefinitely" as Spielberg will be getting ready to work on Indiana Jones IV with Harrison Ford (and Virginia Madsen?) later this year. It may be that the production of Lincoln would be delayed so that the release will fall closer to, or even coincide with, the Lincoln Bi-Centennial in 2009.

Natalie Portman (Padmé Amidala - PT) - is to be honored with Female Star of the Year in Las Vegas this week (February 13 - 16) at ShoWest (world's largest motion picture industry convention) at Bally's and Paris Las Vegas. Portman will also host Saturday Night Live on March 4, 2006.
It is the 31st season and the 13th episode. Musical guest is Fall Out Boy.

Raphael Sbarge (Dack Ralter/Dellis Trantor/Carth Onasi/Delta 62 in Rogue Squadron/Force Commander/KOTOR I & II) will play the role of Yepikhodov in The Cherry Orchard at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles, CA. The production started February 12.

The play, the last written by Anton Chekhov before his death, is about a woman who is about to lose her estate to mounting debts and a former serf turned land owner who wants to purchase the estate where his father and grandfather were also serfs (slaves).

The character of Yepikhodov, nicknamed "Two and Twenty Misfortunes", is farcical and tragic (Russian playwrights generally had the idealist hero set up to fall often). Yepikhodov, an accident-prone estate clerk (essentially a house servant), is an unconvincing romantic and idealist in love with a woman, Yasha, who loves someone else. He and 3 other comic/tragic characters (serfs) in the household are set against the more naturalistic nature of the main characters. The play will also star Alfred Molina, who played Satipo in Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Hassani Shapi (Eeth Koth - PT) starts in a TV film called Murder Unveiled. He plays the father of Davinda, a young woman who is beaten to death because of love. She falls in love with a cab driver after she travels to India for the first time. Her parents feel this is far below her station in life but the mother and an uncle plot to have her beaten. This is based on a true story.

Nia Vardalos (various voice roles in ROTJ radio drama) is tapped to pen the film Talk of the Town for Tom Hanks. Vardalos says, "Tom will play a man who is forced into a career change when he least expects it". Vardalos will also pen and star in the film I Hate Valentine's Day

John Williams - not a part of the database but he had been nominated for a Grammy for the ROTS soundtrack but did not win this past week the Grammy went to Scottish composer Craig Armstrong for the soundtrack for Ray.

Updates to existing actors in the STAR WARS ACTORS DATABASE
Nancy Giles (update - Film; Theatre)
Mark Hamill (update - TV: Ancient Voices 1999) (Thanks to DarthCharlie32!)
James Earl Jones (update - Miscellany)
Ewan McGregor (update - Awards:
Temuera Morrison (update - Video Games) (Thanks to DarthCharlie32!)
Liam Neeson (update - Live Performances)
Natalie Portman (update - TV)
Hassani Shapi (update - TV)
Nia Vardalos (update - Film Writer)

~~Newly added actors:
None this week!

New York Stories (Film)
Working Girl (Film)
The Big Comfy Couch (TV)
The Wrong Coast (TV)

Main Page

FoxTrot (1996-2000)

Bar Girls

Lemon Demon (Thanks to Michael!)

Friends (update to #1 ..title and punchline) (Thanks to DarthCharlie32!)

TV S-Z Stargate SG-1 #8 (correction) and #12 (Thanks to DarthCharlie32!)


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Friday, February 10, 2006

Black History Month Part 2

The entries for February 10, 2006 in the continuing spotlight on Black actors in the Star Wars saga.

Nancy Giles (voice of Adi Gallia in Star Wars: Episode 1 - Power Battles video game)
Giles was born, July 17, 1960, and raised in Queens, New York. She was a product of the public school system graduating from Jamaica High School in 1977 and would attend Oberlin College where she graduated with a BA.

Her first acting jobs were with the Paper Bag Players and as an elf at Macy's. She worked with Second City in Chicago for three years honing her skills as a comedic actress working with the comedy troupe and at Goodman Theatre. She's had roles in several theatre productions including The Best of Second City (tour), her award-winning performance in Mayor and her one-woman show Notes of a Negro Neurotic which she also penned.

Giles has had roles in feature films including Big (1988) with Tom Hanks, Working Girl (1988) with Harrison Ford and New York Stories (1989) with Sofia Coppola. Her TV credits include The Wrong Coast (2003) with Mark Hamill, Law & Order, LA Law, China Beach, Spin City and PB&J Otter. Including a myriad of TV commercials and two video games.

She is well-known for her social commentary on CBS News Sunday Morning since 2002, has had two very popular radio shows, Jay Thomas Morning Show and Giles & Moriarty (for which she received two Gracie Allen awards) and is an adept writer on all three. She's done stand- up and lecture series as well all over the country.

She recently narrated a libretto called Suite for Human Nature which was a comic fable written by Diane Charlotte Lampert with music composed by Wynton Marsalis.

James Earl Jones (voice of Darth Vader). Most of you already know so much about this fine actor so I will redirect you to his page and you can read about his struggles and accomplishments over this lifetime.

Samuel L Jackson (Mace Windu - PT). Again, a redirection to his page on the SWAD.

Taborah Johnson (voice of Latara on Ewoks the animated series) was born in the mid 50's in Zurich, Switzerland. She has a younger brother and a younger sister in show business, her younger brother is director Clark Johnson and jazz diva Molly Johnson is her sister, respectively.

Johnson came to performing at age sixteen when a friend talked her into coming along on an audition/rehearsal for the musical Hair. Her friend did not get the part in the musical but nabbed the role Taborah based solely on her rendition of Summertime. The political nature of the role she played brought the young actress into the spotlight. Note: She was babysitter on the set of Hair to Michelle St. John the actress/singer daughter of Wayne St. John who was starring as Wayne in Hair at the time.

After her high profile run with Hair she joined singer Rick James as a vocalist in 1979. She can be heard on the famous singles Super Freak, Come and Get It and Give it to Me Baby. Johnson toured and recorded with Rick James until 1982 covering five albums. Then went on to sing backing vocals in her sister's band Infidels.In 2005 she hosted a gospel and jazz show Step It Up on Jazz.FM (CJRT in Toronto, CAN) but left the station after only two months due to allegations of racism against the station. They had told her that she had been playing to much black music.

Johnson has also done TV, Film and Radio work and has had her own radio shows on several different radio stations in Canada and currently has her own show on CFRB in Toronto from 4 to 6 pm EST on Saturdays.

Gervais Koffi was born in Bouake on the Ivory Coast of South Africa and raised in the largest city of the Ivory Coast, Abidjan, a city called the "Paris of the West Coast". Koffi started to make moves in the music realm in the late 80's when he joined several different bands that focused mainly on doing covers of other people's songs. Koffi felt that he did not want to continue this way and felt his passion and love for songwriting and original music far outweighed just wanting to perform.

By the mid nineties he'd traveled all over Africa, had been interviewed by TV, Newspapers and Radio and had become quiet well-known for his vibrant African and Latin beats with music styles from all over the continent of Africa. His idea was to bring Africa together as a whole and his music reflected his desire.

The passion in his work/singing didn't go unnoticed, one film maker, Ismael Lo, discovered Koffi during one of his songs and asked him to be in his next film called Afrique mon Afrique. This role lead him to The Foreigner which seemed tailor made for Koffi's desire to erase xenophobia across the globe.

In 1998 Koffi moved from South Africa and headed to Sydney, Australia to work his incredible bass playing, dancing and voice to the populace of Australia. He has continued his acting in Sydney and has been in Babe 2: Pig in the City (1998) and Looking for Alibrandi (2000).

Koffi has gathered talent from all over Australia and formed the African Diaspora. He is warmly welcomed and plays to sold out audiences on a regular basis.


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Phil Brown (1916 - 2006)

UPDATE 2/14/06:
By far the best article on Brown as yet by an established press outlet. (page no longer exists)

UPDATE 2/13/06:Here's an article about Mr. Brown in the LA Times. (page no longer exists)

~~Very sad to say that Actor Phil Brown (Uncle Owen Lars - ANH) has passed away in Hollywood earlier today after a long illness. He was 89 years old.

His onscreen wife, played by actress Shelagh Fraser, passed away on August 29, 2000. She was 77.

Brown, who was once blacklisted by the House of Un-American Activities in 1952, played a varied amount of roles over the course of his lifetime in theatre, television and film and was most certainly more than the sum of his role in Star Wars as Uncle Owen in 1977.
*Info on the Hollywood Blacklist:
After being blacklisted, Brown moved himself and his family to England to live and work and resided in one of two beautiful houseboats on the river Thames. He did not return to the United States until 1992 where he continued to work as an actor and made many, many convention appearances to meet his many fans.

He had lived in Hollywood with his wife Ginny (who helped him a lot at conventions in years past) since 1992.

I'll update as information becomes available.

PS - To see some photographs from his work in films go to his official site HERE and take a look, great to see him in his younger days long before his iconic role in Star Wars.

10 comments digested into 1

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Keira's Vanity Fair Cover

Quick note...Ms. Knightley and her fellow Oscar nominee, Scarlett Johansson, are featured on the Hollywood Issue of Vanity Fair wearing nothing but sultry looks and Tom Ford.

Go Annie Leibovitz!!

HERE. carried the story.


New Art!

Hey there!
"Featured Blog of the Day"? Excellent.
Thank you!

Here's the art stuff...

Fear not I've still got more love-themed works in the pipeline as well as other works.


EDIT: 18 comments digested into 1

Monday, February 06, 2006

Actor and Site Updates!


It's been another busy week here and I'm getting behind in all my pleasurable pursuits...all two of them.

Here are the updates for this week...Blog and Site update

Keira Knightley - was nominated for an Academy Award for her role in Pride & Prejudice. I read something that said that she was the weakest of the actress performances (personally I take issue with that but...whatever) and probably wouldn't win. Knightley, Reese Witherspoon and Felicity Huffman are first time nominees but Huffman's role, as a transsexual in Transamerica, is so different and Witherspoon's role as June Carter, the very strong woman behind the Man in Black in Walk the Line are two performances for newcomers that are very hard to beat. Charlize Theron and Judi Dench round out the nominees. Theron won an Oscar previously for her role in Monster and Dench won an Oscar previously for her small role in Shakespeare in Love. My personal bet is on Witherspoon.

Update to Curious George opening this month (Feb 2006).
Jeff Glen Bennett (Kyle Katarn and other characters over 5 different SW video games) was replaced by Will Farrell for the voice/role of The Man in the Yellow Hat...somewhere along the line.

Mark Dodson (voice of Salacious Crumb in ROTJ) lends his vocal talents, as the creepy old hick farmer, Harold Evrett, to a new independent Horror film called Deadwood Park which is due to be released for Fall 2006. It is directed by Eric Stanz.

Harrison Ford - If you didn't see it you might not have believed it. But Mr. Ford was featured in the 110 second Dr. Seuss inspired opening of Super Bowl XL yesterday. "Are you ready for some football!?" he yelled. Oh boy.

Mr. Ford is also hot on the talk show circuit promoting his latest film Firewall. Of course Natalie Portman's (Padmé - PT) film V for Vendetta was a featured trailer during the TV event as well, that opens next month.

Ewan McGregor (Obi-Wan Kenobi - PT) has been confirmed for the cast of Miss Potter, a Beatrix Potter (yes, of Peter Rabbit fame) biopic. He will play Norman Warne, Miss Potter's lover and manager.

Rebecca Jackson Mendoza (Queen Breha Organa of Alderaan - Leia's adoptive mother) is playing Galadriel - Lady of Lothlorien in a production of Lord of the Rings at the Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto Canada. This production is less a play and more of an "event" and cost in the range of 27 million dollars. LOTR had a preview this past Saturday night with 2000 in attendance and the buzz was very good.

~~Updates to existing actors in the
Obba Babatundé (update - Film; TV; CDs)
Ben Burtt (update - sound file)Mark Coulier (update - Books)
Anthony Daniels (update - TV: Making of Star Wars) (Thanks to DarthCharlie32 for pointing out the omission!)
Mark Dodson (update - Film)
Norwich Duff (update - TV) (Thanks to Skippy!)
Lindsay Duncan (update - Live Appearances)
Mark Hamill (update - sound file; Miscellany)
Harrison Ford (update - TV)
Joyce Kurtz (update - TV ADR/Loop; Awards; Video Games)
Ewan McGregor (update - Film)
Rebecca Jackson Mendoza (update - Theatre)
Dave Prowse (update - Theatre)
Tarik the Bear (update - sound file)
Jason Wingreen (update - sound file)

Newly added actors:
Steven Boyle
Nicole Fantl
Nick Field (Thanks to!)
Tex Fuller (Thanks to!)
Pat Gorman (Thanks to!)
Jason Hallwood
Steve Ismay (Thanks to!)

~~Actor Connections
From Russia With Love (Film)
Island of Terror (Film) (Thanks to Skippy!)
In & Out (Film)Malcolm X (Film)
The Missionary (Film)
More American Graffiti (Film)
The Vengeance of Fu Manchu (Film) (Thanks to Skippy!)
Adventures of Ragtime (TV)
The Preston Episodes (TV)
Law and Order (TV 1969: A Villain's Tale)
Space: 1999 (TV: Testament of Arkadia; Space Brain; Breakaway)
Through the Dragon's Eyes (TV)
Young Indiana Jones Chronicles (TV)
Agnes of God (Theatre)

Main Page

The Boondocks - 2003-2005
Doctor Fun (Thanks to Rebel Racer!)

Forest Orange (Thanks to Mr. Sanford!)

My Name Is Earl (Thanks to John at Obroa-Skai!)


Sunday, February 05, 2006

TV Tomorrow Night

Quickie here...I think the times are correct, at least for the west coast. Anyone with corrections, let me know.

Harrison Ford will be a guest on five shows in the next two days, no doubt talking about Firewall. We'll see what he has to say about Indy IV too.
On the 6th:
Today Show 7am
Late Show with David Letterman 12:35

On the 7th:
Late Night with Conan O'Brien 12:35 am
Live with Regis & Kelly 9 am
Tonight show with Jay Leno 11:35 pm

On the 6th:
11:35 p.m. NBC The Tonight Show - Yo-Yo Ma performs with John Williams.

Now, it's not very often that we see Mr. Williams on the Tonight Show. yay! The performance/Interview? will be from/about the Memoirs of a Geisha soundtrack.

And...After Ms. Burton's interview with Death Cab for Cutie a week or so ago I thought someone out there might want to see them perform:
12:35 a.m. NBC Late Night - Death Cab for Cutie performs.


Black History Month Part 1

Better late than never. More work and a very ill child today so there was no time for the extra stuff! I sit bleary eyed once more at my drawing table at 3 am. Thanks for hanging in there!Here you go!

Obba Babatundé (voice of Lando Calrissian in SW: Rogue Squadron III and SW: Galactic Battlegrounds) was born and raised in Jamaica, Queens, New York in the 50's. Six short years after his birth he began to perform shows for his family. However, Babatundé made his professional debut, at the age of 14, as a member of the Metropolitan Brass Ensemble which toured the West Indies and the United States.

Brooklyn College was Babatundé's next step into the world and it was there where his love of acting took root as well as his dancing and singing. After graduating from college and founding the Harriet Tubman school with his brother, actor Akin Babatundé, he had parts in over a dozen New York stage productions including Guys and Dolls (1976), Timbuktu (1977-1978) and the hugely popular Dreamgirls (1981 - 1985) where he played/originated C.C. White (Effie's brother) a role which earned him a Tony nomination for Best Actor - Featured Role. For his stage work he's received nominations for the Barrymore Awards, Carbonell Awards and Dramalogue Awards.

The progression to TV was natural for this handsome and multi-talented man. His first TV appearance was on an ABC variety special called Baryshnikov on Broadway (1980 - which I clearly recall watching, since I was in love with Baryshnikov for a good part of my formative years) where he appeared as a dancer and signed as a regular, Rusty Bennett, on ABC's All My Children (NY). With a very successful go on Broadway (not everyone is that lucky AND talented) and a major soap opera under his belt Babatundé moved to Los Angeles to work in Film and television.

Babatundé received more acclaim with Blues in the Night, Introducing Dorothy Dandridge and Miss Evers' Boys (1997). The nominations came from the NAACP Image Awards, the Emmy Awards, the Cable Ace Awards and the Black Reel Awards. And a few selections of his film work include: The Celestine Prophecy (2005), The Manchurian Candidate (2004), The Wild Thornberry's Movie (2002), his award nominated performance in The Visit (2000), That Thing You Do! (1996), Philadelphia (1993), The Silence of the Lambs (1991) and Married to the Mob (1988).

His theatre career didn't die out with the move to sunny LA. He went on to star as Jelly in Jelly's Last Jam (1991) and also was the first African American man to play Billy Flynn on Broadway and in the national tour of Chicago (1997-1998), he also toured Asia with his own show, Obba in Concert to much acclaim. Babatundé has returned to the stage in Chicago the Musical this year, again as Billy Flynn. The production is at the Dupont Theatre in Wilmington, DE through February 12.

Babtundé has added voice-work, writing and producing to his already wide range of talents. He's been the voice of Lando Calrissian in two LucasArts Star Wars video games: SW: Rogue Squadron III (2003); SW: Galactic Battlegrounds (2001), voiced Boko in The Wild Thornberrys Movie (2003), worked on three PBS documentaries: Dorothy Dandridge: An American Beauty (2003 - narrator/host), wrote and directed Oscar's Black Odyssey: From Hattie to Haley (2003), and hosted Television in Black: The first 50 years (2004). He's just finished penning Woman Ta Woman starring Valarie Pettiford (his TV wife from Half & Half).

Mr. Babatundé lives in Los Angeles with his family and I'm sure we'll see more and more of him in years to come.

Tace Bayliss (Stass Allie - Holographic form on Kashyyyk in ROTS) There isn't a lot of information on Ms. Baylis out there but she did direct a short film that made the international film festival circuit called Why.

The film is twenty minutes in length and was released in 1994.
A description of the film: The only way to a clear conscience is not to be afraid of speaking the truth.

Ahmed Best (Jar Jar Binks - PT and Ackmed Beq in AOTC). Ahmed Best was another talented performer born in New York, this time out of the South Bronx (Soundview) on August 19, 1973 (with twin brother Khalid). He was raised there until 1984 when his family moved to Maplewood, NJ. He attended Columbia High School.

Best displayed his percussive/singing/dancing talents throughout his youth and by the time he graduated from Columbia HS in 1991 he went on to attend the Manhattan School of Music where he studied percussion in the Jazz and Contemporary Music department, he graduated in 1994. Best turned down a full athletic scholarship to Syracuse University to study music.

Fresh from graduating from the MSM he joined the Acid Jazz group JazzHole. JazzHole was founded by Warren Rosenstein, John Pondel and Marlon Saunders and has been described as modern urban soul "...a sound that incorporates downtempo grooves and acoustic Rhythm and Blues with hints of ambient electronica and bossa nova."

It was Mr. Rosenstein, in the early 90's, who gathered talent (including Ahmed Best) from those working or hanging out at Context Studios, a performing arts center, on Manhattan's Lower East Side to form JazzHole. Their first album was released in 1994 and called The Jazz Hole and Best contributed his skill as a rapper. The album debuted to high acclaim.

Best spent much of the 90's as a member of the award-winning percussion production STOMP! which played at the Orpheum Theatre in New York and toured the US, UK and Europe, Japan and even Greece. The group also performed in a variety of TV commercials and programs.

In 1998 George Lucas discovered Best while performing in STOMP! and asked him to try out for a role in the new Star Wars film he was filming. The role, we all know, was that of *Jar Jar Binks in The Phantom Menace (1999) He's also played Binks in five Star Wars video games.

Best went on to have roles in TV and film, including the two subsequent Star Wars films Attack of the Clones (2002) and Revenge of the Sith (2005), but he was also the English voice of Mouse in Armitage: Dual Matrix (2001) and starred in several Sacred Fools Theatre Productions (Hollywood, CA) including Jack, Uncle Tom's Cabin and The Tempest.

Currently Best runs his own company called Stop That Bangin! Productions and is working on his music. You can hear nine of his musical works on his official site

*Many people consider him a bad actor and person, simply because of his role as Jar Jar Binks. I think this is harshly unjust, the man is obviously very talented in so much and it's a shame that others can't see past one fictitious character.

Diahann Carroll (nee Carol Diahann Johnson) (Holographic Wow in the Star Wars Holiday Special) was born on July 17, 1935 in Harlem, the Bronx, New York to John and Mable Johnson.

Carroll's interest in entertainment started when she was 10 years old. She won a scholarship to study at the Metropolitan Opera she went on to study at the prestigious Manhattan High School for the Performing Arts (made super famous by the film Fame) with Billy Dee Williams. After graduation she went to New York University to study sociology but in 1954 she left to become a full-time entertainer.
She started to model, first job was modeling petticoats for Ebony Magazine, she was a hit on the New York City nightclub scene and landed a role in Carmen Jones (1954), an all-black version of Bizet's Carmen and made her Broadway debut in Truman Capote's House of Flowers (1954).

Singing was another love and Carroll and was making hit singles from House of Flowers in 1955 to Don't Answer Me in 1967. She continued to sing throughout her career. By 1962 Carroll had nearly become a household name and she had won a Tony Award for her role in No Strings.

In 1956 Carroll married Flip Wilson Show producer Monte Kay, they had a daughter in 1960, Suzanne who later became a journalist, but the marriage only lasted for three more years and ended in divorce in 1963...this was due in part to her much publicized private affair with her Paris Blues co-star Sidney Poitier, this relationship lasted for several years and they were even engaged for a short time, they never married.

By 1968 she had become the first Black woman to star in her own TV sitcom, Julia. (Note: I recall vividly seeing Carroll on this show when I was little, I thought she was the most beautiful 'girl' I'd ever seen, I was all of 4 or 5.) Her role as Julia earned her a Golden Globe Award and an Emmy nomination. She left the show after three years due to stress issues.

Carroll had also become engaged to British TV journalist David Frost but the marriage never happened. In 1973 she married Freddie Glusman but they were divorced after 4 months of marriage. By 1975 she had met and married 24 year old Ebony magazine Editor Robert DeLeon, two years later he was killed in a car accident while intoxicated. She would not remarry until 1987 and that was to singer Vic Damone, they were divorced in 1996.

Carroll continued her film, stage and singing career but left TV until the 80's where she would play businesswoman Dominique Deveraux Lloyd on the tremendously popular Dynasty. Her film roles include Porgy and Bess (1959) , Claudine (1974 - with James Earl Jones) which earned her an Academy Award best actress nomination, Eve's Bayou (1997).
She starred as Dr. Livingstone in Agnes of God (which, by the way, was written by Star Wars alum John Pielmeier) in 1982 with actress Carrie Fisher who played Agnes.

In 1995 Carroll was the first African-American to land the role of Norma Desmond in Andrew Lloyd Webber's Sunset Boulevard and in 1997 she was the first African-American woman to start her own clothing line.

Carroll has won or been nominated for many awards over her career including a Crystal Award for her body of work, daytime and regular Emmys, Golden Globes, NAACP Image Awards, Lucy Award, TV Land Award, Tony Award. In 1996 she received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

This year she's starring in her own production called The Life and Times of Diahann Carroll, she'll be 71 this year and looks fantastic.

Tony Cox (Willy Widdle Warrick the scientist in ROTJ, both Ewok films). Cox was born on March 31, 1958 in New York City (Woman's Hospital) to Joe and Henrietta Jones Cox. But at 9 months old his mother took him to live with her parents (Henry and Lottie Jones) who lived in Uniontown, Alabama.

By all accounts Cox lived a completely normal childhood and nobody treated him any differently, because of his size, than any of the other people in the small town of 2000. He had loads of friends, played basketball and was a keen drummer. His grandmother, Lottie, can be credited with an incredible level of support and love for her grandson and what she saw and knew of his talents. She spared nothing to highlight his talents at every turn.

After graduating from high school and attending Alabama State University he got the acting bug and it was during his studies at ASU where some relatives visiting from LA encouraged him to go to California and make a go of it.

So off to Hollywood he went. He started by trying to get into acting classes in early 80's, but his first experience was negative, the head of the first school refused to admit him because "'re black. You got a strike against you already." Undeterred, Cox tried other schools with very positive feedback and he began classes at the Merrick Studio School of Acting and actively joined Little People of America. Several years after being rejected by that first school he was back to speak about making it in the business.

Cox starred with Billy Barty (founder of Little People of America) and 223 other little people on the film Willow (1988). Willow was an interesting experience for the little people involved in the filming. The call for little actors started in the UK but came up short of the over 200 needed so there was a Europe-wide call. The set was filled with people from 13 different countries and the language barrier was difficult at times. It was Cox and Barty who changed all that by getting to know all the others who had been flown in for filming to get along and feel good about what they were doing and who they were.

Cox might best be known recently for his portrayal Marcus, a crass assistant/elf to Billy Bob Thornton's Bad Santa (2003), but he's contributed to many films and TV programs over the years. Including, of course, playing an Ewok (Willy Waddle Warrick) in Return of the Jedi and both Ewok films (Fader (music magazine) interviewed Cox in 2004 and he talked about moving past little person roles but he did add, "..the only role like that I would be interested in is Yoda"), he also played the limo driver in Me, Myself and Irene (2000) and had roles in The Hebrew Hammer (2003), Leprechaun 1 & 2 (1993 and 1994), Spaced Invaders (1990), Bird (1988), Beetlejuice (1988), Spaceballs (1987) and Blade Runner (1982) with Harrison Ford.

On TV Cox started on Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, then both Ewoks movies, thirtysomething, Married...With Children, the Jamie Foxx Show, Frasier and Rescue Me.

Cox still plays basketball and has played for the Hollywood Shorties, he can sink a basket from nearly 40 feet, but he's also a champion table-tennis player and is active in the marital arts. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife.

David Alan Grier (voice of Bo Shek/various characters in the Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi Radio Drama - 1997) was born on June 30, 1955 in Detroit, Michigan.

Grier first became interested in acting when he was at the University of Michigan. A friend of his had a theatre and needed warm bodies to play minor roles, this friend asked David to come and try. He did and was hopelessly hooked from that point on.

He graduated from the University of Michigan (called Cass Tech at his graduation) and earned a Bachelor's degree in Radio, Television and Film (under the tutelage of Rhonnie Washington) and then was accepted to the Yale School of Drama where he earned a Masters degree in 1981.

He started his acting career with drama but has found a perfect niche in comedic parts, it is not difficult to imagine him now in a dramatic role. He is equally at home in all the types of characters he plays. He's gone from serious drama, on stage in Peer Gynt, on film in A Soldier's Story (1984), and his Golden Lion Award-winning performance in Streamers (1983), to a vast array of comedic parts like his years on In Living Color, his participation in Crank Yankers and others. He's also thrown in a few children's fare including MuppetsWizard of Oz (2005), Sesame Street, the Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle (2000) and Stuart Little (1999) to hosting a game show in 1990 called Pure Insanity!He's also starred in the critically acclaimed stage production of Dreamgirls and and he most recently replaced Billy Dee Williams as Fernando Perez in The Mambo Kings on Broadway in 2005/2006. (Note: Williams suffered from an injury that prevented him from finishing the production.)

It seems natural for Mr. Grier to be interested in speed since he hails from the Motor City, he loves car and motorcycle racing, but isn't partial to NASCAR and hates Harley's...he loves sports bikes. He has participated in the Long Beach Grand Prix, a race in Southern California where George Lucas has also raced.

Art is another important part of Grier's life and he's collected for years. He first started with African-American movie posters, moved to prints then started collecting originals.

Grier is active on the speaker circuit and has spoken on campuses and in theatres all over the US.

Mr. Grier lives in Los Angeles, CA with his wife Maritsa.
Thanks for reading!


Saturday, February 04, 2006

Black History Month and Star Wars

Black History has been officially recognized in week then month form since 1927. **Dr. Carter Godwin Woodson fathered the event to introduce to Black Americans, and to all Americans, the contributions made by important men and women who were NOT included in standardized educational textbooks.

Unfortunately, precious little was done to add Black history to textbooks of high-school aged children or younger until at least the 70's and even into the 80's. I saw near nothing in my textbooks until I was well into college. I had positive role models throughout my childhood and consider myself lucky to have been raised without prejudice and without hatred.
My parents' friends and business associates were of all nationalities and orientations so I saw everyone in my parents realm (and their realm being mine) as a smaller version of what I thought the larger world offered, it seemed positive proof that we were all essentially the same with some intriguing differences that I thought were cool but never weird or frightening.
It never once occurred to me to think in collective terms or to make generalities regarding race or gender and I never felt that others around me made them either.

Part of that thinking and feeling I owe to my parents and their friends (poor, wealthy; hippie, conservative; black, white or anything in between; gay or straight), part of that to the era in which I spent my most influential years, Santa Barbara (again...70's, hippies, artists, etc., etc.), and part of that to two "Big Sisters" one white and one black.

Black History Month is a valuable asset for adults and children alike to become aware of, be re-introduced to, continue education in, our cultural/ideological differences and to remind us of our diverse forefathers and history.

This introduction may seem a tad serious considering the upcoming content but it was my way of having people understand that I do not take the following lightly by any means and that I hope to highlight the achievements, academic or otherwise, of Black actors associated with the Star Wars saga in any of the genres. Like any cross-section of people their credits and accomplishments vary significantly but I feel each one is as important as the other. The way I feel about all the actors in my database.

Each Friday (sorry a little late, working) for the month of February I will spotlight a set of Black actors, chosen alphabetically, and elaborate on their history, if known. There are 21 that I am personally aware of, if there are others (some people have so little info that there's no way to make any association based on color alone), if I make any exclusions it is not for lack of effort. Please make me aware of anyone that I have missed.

February 4, 2006
Obba Babatunde
Tace Bayliss
Ahmed Best
Tony Cox
Diahann Carroll
David Alan Grier

February 10, 2006
Nancy Giles
James Earl Jones
Samuel L Jackson
Taborah Johnson
Gervais Koffi

February 17, 2006
Phil LaMarr
Mary Oyaya
Quentin Pierre
Hugh Quarshie
Kevin Michael Richardson

February 24, 2006
Dave Sexton
Cree Summer
Roger Guenveur Smith
Femi Taylor
Billy Dee Williams

Precious few relative to the enormity of the database, which nears 1000, but here none-the-less.


**Dr. Woodson was an accomplished man with a heavy focus on Black history. Between they years of 1895 and 1922 Dr. Woodson attended the following schools: Berea College (KY-Bachelor of Literature), Lincoln University (PA), University of Chicago (IL), the Sorbonne (Paris, FR), returned to U of Chicago for graduate school receiving his MA and BA between March and August of the same year and Harvard University (MA-Ph.D in History).

He was a teacher and dean at several schools, high school and college, including dean at Howard University.
(source: Chicago Public Library)

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Star Warzzzzz

Star Warzzzzzz

What Uncle Owen really thought of Threepio.

...and Luke just met Threepio...tsk, tsk. 

Threepio found out he wasn't going to be the center of attention and dropped off, Luke watches Ben doze.

Sandman delivers the desert drowsies.

Debnoli is B-O-R-E-D...or, just saw Threepio coming and is pretending to be asleep.

Momaw Laydown...and get some sleep...Trinto has the right idea.

Han Snoozo

Slumber the Hutt

Motti about to hit home plate, Col. Yularen, already in his PJs, on deck.

Sleeping? Hm, I wonder.

The real reason Obi-Wan died. Never fall asleep with your lightsaber activated.
Wedge seems a little...concerned, "pft! guy, who does he think he is...a Jedi?" Other pilots about to go.'s spreading.

Who's X-Wing did HE work on?

Wedge concedes.
Luke dreaming of Womp Rats back home.

Dutch dreaming of fighting in a space battle to save the galaxy...seems so real.


Biggs, dreams of Camie.

Jek...dancing Twi-leks.