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[ Taa, Orn Free ]
Taa, Orn Free
The obese and indulgent Twi'lek politician...
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Feature: An Introduction to Episode III
Feature: Star Wars Episode I: Production Notes
Feature: starwars.com @ Celebration II
Feature: Star Wars Insider #81 Online Supplement
[ Episode III ]

Ships Aplenty
Opera Cameos
Battleground Bits
Episode III Easter Egg Hunt
May 26, 2005

Ships Aplenty

Fans know well what audiences around the world are discovering: you simply cannot take in all the detail of a Star Wars movie in one sitting. So intricate and meticulous is each shot that every image tells a rich story. In some cases, that story is kind of funny -- a cleverly placed nod to audience members who know where to look. For eagle eyed viewers, they're called Easter Eggs. Sometimes they're inside jokes. Other times, they're just interesting details that are very easy to overlook.

Here's a list of some of those little must-see moments that you may have missed. Consult this list the next time you go see Episode III and count how many you can spot.

Spoiler Warning: If you haven't seen Episode III yet, you may not want to read ahead.

[ Episode III Easter Egg Hunt ]
kitchen sink
During the space battle, when a blue laser beam lances out of the belly bay of a massive Republic Star Destroyer and splits a Banking Clan frigate in two, it unleashes a blossoming explosion with streaming debris. The camera pans along with one sizable chunk as it slams back into the Republic vessel. That is indeed a kitchen sink.

[ Episode III Easter Egg Hunt ]
"the Wilhelm."
An audio easter egg -- and hallowed tradition of Star Wars -- is the piercing scream affectionately called "the Wilhelm." It's a decades-old audio recording of a very distinctive scream that has become a "pet sound effect" to many sound editors, though Ben Burtt deserves special mention for surreptitiously spreading it through the movies he's worked on. It can be heard shouted by a clone trooper thrown by an exploding weapons emplacement during the opening space battle.

[ Episode III Easter Egg Hunt ] [ Episode III Easter Egg Hunt ]
stay on target...
Subtly providing some nice connective tissue to the original trilogy are the designs of the starfighter targeting computers. The display screens in Anakin and Obi-Wan's Jedi fighters very closely resemble those on Darth Vader's TIE fighter, while the little icons lining the screens of the clone fighters look a lot like those found on the X-wings.

[ Episode III Easter Egg Hunt ]
destroyers and donuts
There's so much happening high above Coruscant that it's hard to single out one spectacle not to miss. There's a very intriguing tangle that has a triangular Republic destroyer caught within the arms of a massive ring-shaped Trade Federation battleship. It's hard to tell what's happening here: perhaps the Federation ship has somehow captured the Republic vessel in its clutches. According to the Animatics Department that plotted out the space battle, the Republic ship is docked with a captive donut ship, and teams of clone troopers are tearing through the corridors.

[ Episode III Easter Egg Hunt ]
the Falcon
It's tiny, but visible enough to send a warm fuzzy through the hearts of original trilogy fans. In the establishing shot of the expansive Senate docking bays, there's a tiny Millennium Falcon easing into frame. And it's not just a non-descript Corellian freighter; it's on good authority -- namely George Lucas -- that this is the infamous hunk-of-junk before it came into the ownership of either Lando Calrissian or Han Solo. Also peculiar about that shot: there are no less than three gleaming Naboo star skiffs parked on the lot. Does Padmé have spares?

[ Episode III Easter Egg Hunt ]
supporting Senators
Though it's been reported that the Senatorial plotlines of Episode III were all cut out of the film to keep the focus on Anakin's story, almost all of those supporting Senators are still in the film. The starwars.com databank recently added such Senators as Chi Eekway, Terr Taneel, Nee Alavar, Mon Mothma, Giddean Danu, Malé-Dee, Fang Zar, Meena Tills, and Fema Baab to its encyclopedic entries, and they are all on that platform. Watch for them.

[ Episode III Easter Egg Hunt ]
speaking of Jar Jar
Some press outlets have reported that Jar Jar doesn't utter a single word in this film, but he does. Listen closely as the Senators file in behind Palpatine and enter the building. The bungling Gungan accidentally invades Senator Orn Free Taa's personal space, provoking an exchange of "Watch it." "Excuse me."

Expanded universe fans may have had their ears perk up when Obi-Wan gives the single-sentence summary of the Jedi briefing Anakin just missed. He mentions that Master Vos has moved his troops to Boz Pity. That is indeed a reference to Quinlan Vos, who was almost slated to appear in Episode III. Lucas included the comic book Jedi in the script, though his sequence was never filmed.

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