New exhibit at Geppi’s Entertainment Museum celebrates Star Wars®’ 30th anniversary From June 23 to Sept. 15, Geppi’s Entertainment Museum at Camden Yards, Baltimore, will host a special exhibit celebrating 30 years of Star Wars®.
News-Antique.com - May 31,2007 - BALTIMORE – In 1977, one film forever redefined popular science fiction and “event” cinema. George Lucas’ Star Wars®, with its unforgettable universe of characters, made an indelible mark on American and global pop culture and inspired a panorama of collectibles and other licensed items that continues to this day. Beginning June 23, Geppi’s Entertainment Museum at Camden Yards (“GEM”) invites everyone to celebrate three decades of adventure in a galaxy far, far away through a special exhibit of Star Wars® toys, comics, household items and much more. The collection featured in The Force™ is with Us: 30 Years of Star Wars® comes to GEM courtesy of Thomas G. Atkinson, director of the Star Toys Museum in Baltimore.
According to GEM’s curator, historian and author Dr. Arnold T. Blumberg, the first major Star Wars® toy licensee – Kenner – was unprepared for the phenomenal success of the film. Unable to release the first action figures in its range of Star Wars® toys in time for the 1977 Christmas season, Kenner shipped the next best thing: an empty box with a mail-in certificate for the first four figures.
In the 30 years since the first Star Wars® film premiered, the empire has grown to include five more films, cartoons, TV specials, books, magazines, toys and collectibles of every conceivable category. The GEM exhibit draws from a dazzling collection that features a complete set of Kenner’s coveted action figures from the years 1978 through 1985, a collection in and of itself. Visitors can also view the first-ever lightsaber toy – inflatable, no less – customized model vans, record albums, 8-track tapes and primitive electronic games; an array of foreign-made items; and some early unlicensed articles released before licensing protocols were widely recognized.
The Force™ is with Us: 30 Years of Star Wars® opens June 23 and runs through Sept. 15. Geppi’s Entertainment Museum at Camden Yards is located at 301 W. Camden St., Baltimore, MD 21201. For additional details log on to www.geppismuseum.com or call 410-625-7060. Group tours are welcome, and admission is free to museum members.
Star Wars® is a registered name wholly owned by Lucasfilm Ltd. The Force™ is a trademarked term wholly owned by Lucasfilm Ltd. The words Star Wars® and The Force™ appear within the GEM exhibit’s title by expressed permission of Lucasfilm Ltd. Lucasfilm Ltd. neither authorizes nor has an association with the exhibit, whose goal is to illustrate to the public, through a display of products and collectibles, the impact the Star Wars® saga has had on popular culture.
Photo credit: From the Thomas Atkinson Collection. Photography by Thomas Atkinson.