Author: J.W Rinzler
Design and tech manuals are quite the fashion for Star Wars book collectors and Titan add yet another top notch entry with this latest release Star Wars: The Blue Prints.
Far from something that was thought up as a cheap idea that would rake in the cash (but if this sells well then it will certainly rake in the cash) this is a nicely designed and laid out effort. Opening with some lovely introduction from the likes of Norman Reynolds – who worked on the original trilogy – J.W Rinzler seems to have been given all access at the Skywalker ranch to research and develop this film by film chapter exploring vehicles, space ships and famous locations in the Star Wars universe.
You get a great sense of size, scale, and the fact that someone had to literally sit down at an architect’s drawing board and draw these things out to perfection. The book starts pretty much where Episode 4 began with the Rebel Cruiser. Exterior, interior – the corridor layout and even the escape pod. The research for this book goes way back to original sketches, production designs, screenshots, storyboards as well us updated designs. Every leaf has been turned over to visual display the ideas from various minds (either a production designer at the time, or even perhaps a storyboard sketch from the likes of Joe Johnston).
The fact that it isn’t just restrained to the vehicles is what makes this book all the more exciting. The layout of Mos Esiley, the base on Hoth, the Ewok village – yes even the Wampa’s homestead all get a look in. It makes sense that everything that was in the films had to be designed from the film-makers perspective.
The press notes state there are over 250 blueprints which includes over 500 photographs and illustrations. This is evident, and there are also several fold-out sections for larger designs. But there are also plenty of words to accompany the text. It will take any avid reader a good while to retrace the films through this beautifully laid out book.
This divide between the three films evidently points towards the original trilogy getting the bulk of the book numbering around the 90 page mark per movie. The newer trilogy is lucky to get between 20-30 pages per film. This shouldn’t put off fans though from adding this very impressive volume to their library.