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The Art of Star Wars: Episode V—The Empire Strikes Back

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THE ART OF STAR WARS: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK is a magnificent, full-color celebration of the amazing artistic and technical accomplishments in the second chapter of the most spectacular space epic of all time. Lavishly illustrated with production sketches, production paintings, costume designs, construction drawings, matte paintings, storyboards, and stills, and complete THE ART OF STAR WARS: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK is a magnificent, full-color celebration of the amazing artistic and technical accomplishments in the second chapter of the most spectacular space epic of all time. Lavishly illustrated with production sketches, production paintings, costume designs, construction drawings, matte paintings, storyboards, and stills, and complete with biographies of the outstanding artists and technicians who created the film, THE ART OF STAR WARS: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK is an indispensable volume for fans and special-effects buffs alike. This volume includes: * The complex stop-motion animation technique used for the tauntaun, the beast Luke rode on the frozen planet Hoth * The design and animation techniques used in the creation of the immense Imperial walkers * The fascinating development of the swamp planet Dagobah * The evolution of the character of Yoda * Enthralling matte paintings that bring Cloud City to life


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THE ART OF STAR WARS: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK is a magnificent, full-color celebration of the amazing artistic and technical accomplishments in the second chapter of the most spectacular space epic of all time. Lavishly illustrated with production sketches, production paintings, costume designs, construction drawings, matte paintings, storyboards, and stills, and complete THE ART OF STAR WARS: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK is a magnificent, full-color celebration of the amazing artistic and technical accomplishments in the second chapter of the most spectacular space epic of all time. Lavishly illustrated with production sketches, production paintings, costume designs, construction drawings, matte paintings, storyboards, and stills, and complete with biographies of the outstanding artists and technicians who created the film, THE ART OF STAR WARS: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK is an indispensable volume for fans and special-effects buffs alike. This volume includes: * The complex stop-motion animation technique used for the tauntaun, the beast Luke rode on the frozen planet Hoth * The design and animation techniques used in the creation of the immense Imperial walkers * The fascinating development of the swamp planet Dagobah * The evolution of the character of Yoda * Enthralling matte paintings that bring Cloud City to life

30 review for The Art of Star Wars: Episode V—The Empire Strikes Back

  1. 4 out of 5

    Steve Davala

    Great book. I've had this since 1994 and just gave it a nice readthrough. There are some wacky images in here of Yoda, some great techniques with stop-motion animation... matte paintings by Ralph McQuarrie... that man is a legend. He pretty much designed the ships, creatures, big concept ideas... amazing. There are some side mentions of different characters that I don't know if they're legit. With the medical droid, Too-One-Bee, it says he had a human brain in there. I asked a SW story guru, Matt Great book. I've had this since 1994 and just gave it a nice readthrough. There are some wacky images in here of Yoda, some great techniques with stop-motion animation... matte paintings by Ralph McQuarrie... that man is a legend. He pretty much designed the ships, creatures, big concept ideas... amazing. There are some side mentions of different characters that I don't know if they're legit. With the medical droid, Too-One-Bee, it says he had a human brain in there. I asked a SW story guru, Matt Martin, and he said, "Probably the author making stuff up." I don't know about that... There are some storyboards right near the end of the book that are pretty much what happened at the end of Empire. With the music swelling, the pan out over the galaxy, the Falcon boosting away... I practically saw the scenes play in my mind. So cool how a concept can become a "reality."

  2. 5 out of 5

    Chad Warner

    I enjoyed this Art of Star Wars book, which has sketches, paintings, and photos from The Empire Strikes Back (my favorite Star Wars movie). It includes more details about the story and movie-making process than recent Art of Star Wars books, telling about sets, film techniques, models, and puppets. I love the McQuarrie paintings, the especially AT-ATs. The end of the book describes the digital changes made for the Special Edition. Quotes "The medical staff is headed by Too-Onebee, a medical droid I enjoyed this Art of Star Wars book, which has sketches, paintings, and photos from The Empire Strikes Back (my favorite Star Wars movie). It includes more details about the story and movie-making process than recent Art of Star Wars books, telling about sets, film techniques, models, and puppets. I love the McQuarrie paintings, the especially AT-ATs. The end of the book describes the digital changes made for the Special Edition. Quotes "The medical staff is headed by Too-Onebee, a medical droid with a human brain." "Yoda is an environmentalist … Yoda would not use technical appliances." "Yoda spends most of his time in meditation studying ancient documents and diagrams."

  3. 4 out of 5

    Phil Giunta

    A thorough review of the artwork, props, creatures, ships, vehicles, and costumes from The Empire Strikes Back. Unlike The Art of Star Wars: Episode IV, this book does not include the film's screenplay. However, it offers detailed descriptions of each location in the film from Hoth to the Asteroid Belt to Dagobah to Bespin. There are several pages dedicated to the development of the Tautaun, Snow Speeders, AT-ATs, Yoda, and Boba Fett. Featured artists include Ralph McQuarrie, Joe Johnston, Nilo A thorough review of the artwork, props, creatures, ships, vehicles, and costumes from The Empire Strikes Back. Unlike The Art of Star Wars: Episode IV, this book does not include the film's screenplay. However, it offers detailed descriptions of each location in the film from Hoth to the Asteroid Belt to Dagobah to Bespin. There are several pages dedicated to the development of the Tautaun, Snow Speeders, AT-ATs, Yoda, and Boba Fett. Featured artists include Ralph McQuarrie, Joe Johnston, Nilo Rodis-Jamero, Norman Reynolds, Phil Tippett, and others.

  4. 4 out of 5

    The Warped One

    Another reread from my collection celebrating the 40th anniversary of The Empire Strikes Back. I’ve had this book for ages but I don’t think it entered my collection until a few years after the film was released.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Alex Garcia

    I really liked the story to the book and how it links up with the movie and how they describe the characters. It was very suspenseful as they begin to get overran by the Empire.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Matthew Lloyd

    First things first: the art is all, pretty much, amazing. One of the things which really made the original Star Wars trilogy special was the amazing settings, the fully realised worlds, and the costumes, and most of these are detailed here. But there is much more detail than that. This volume describes the process behind designing and animating the Tauntaun, the construction of Dagobah and the animation of Yoda, and the way in which matte paintings were used to enhance the sets. Perhaps the most First things first: the art is all, pretty much, amazing. One of the things which really made the original Star Wars trilogy special was the amazing settings, the fully realised worlds, and the costumes, and most of these are detailed here. But there is much more detail than that. This volume describes the process behind designing and animating the Tauntaun, the construction of Dagobah and the animation of Yoda, and the way in which matte paintings were used to enhance the sets. Perhaps the most interesting part deals with some of the details of life in Cloud City, its social structure and organization, and the depth of detail which went into its design. The art in this section is particularly fantastic, inspired by 1920s art deco styles and featuring a lot more depth than the film itself. I also enjoyed the fact that most of the production designs featuring Leia gave her the Danish-pastries hairstyle she wears in A New Hope. The book is not without its problems. While the art is amazing, some of its presentation is quite poor. In the 1994 paperback edition which I read some of the larger pictures spread across two pages, obscuring part of the picture in the page divide. Other pictures are presented just a little too small. In terms of content, there is a considerable lack of detail to the asteroid field sequence, which was one of the production areas in which I was most interested, and there are no design sketches of any of the bounty hunters besides Boba Fett (perhaps they thought they didn't need that scum?). Perhaps also it would have been of interest to include more screenshots of the finished production for comparison - although I admit that these comments are now reaching the point of saying that the book simply should have been longer. Nonetheless, the volume is generally fantastic. I borrowed this copy from the library, but I would certainly like my own.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mark

    Eschewing the format of the other two books in the series (for the original trilogy, at least) this doesn’t contain the screenplay but the additional space given over to the glorious artwork (that is reproduced in crystal clear clarity) more than makes up for it. Broken into six parts - Hoth, Star Destroyer, Dagobah, Asteroid Belt, Bespin and Rebel Cruiser and closed out with biographies of key personnel - each of which starts with a synopsis and production notes, this includes development sketc Eschewing the format of the other two books in the series (for the original trilogy, at least) this doesn’t contain the screenplay but the additional space given over to the glorious artwork (that is reproduced in crystal clear clarity) more than makes up for it. Broken into six parts - Hoth, Star Destroyer, Dagobah, Asteroid Belt, Bespin and Rebel Cruiser and closed out with biographies of key personnel - each of which starts with a synopsis and production notes, this includes development sketches, costume designs, engineering drawings and production paintings and is a genuine feast for the eyes. From the wonderful (and immediately evocative, to anyone of my age who lapped up anything and everything about Star Wars they could get their hands on) paintings of Ralph McQuarrie to the photo-realistic matte paintings of Harrison Ellenshaw and Mike Pangrazio, this is a must-read for any fans of the film, the original trilogy, special effects or movie artwork. Expertly capturing imagery that is still iconic, thirty years later, this well designed book is highly recommended.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Anton Klink

    The Star Wars art of Ralph McQuarry is first rate and by itself would garner any book a five star rating. However, the art of some additional artists featured in the book was not that exciting. This book is probably a treasure trove for a dedicated Star Wars fan, however for the layman the constant barrage of half-finished sketches can become tiresome. All the finished paintings looked amazing but I was not that keen to see all the iterations of all the characters and vehicles during their devel The Star Wars art of Ralph McQuarry is first rate and by itself would garner any book a five star rating. However, the art of some additional artists featured in the book was not that exciting. This book is probably a treasure trove for a dedicated Star Wars fan, however for the layman the constant barrage of half-finished sketches can become tiresome. All the finished paintings looked amazing but I was not that keen to see all the iterations of all the characters and vehicles during their development phases. The text accompanying the paintings and sketches is semi-informative but also contains unnecessary fluff, either pointing out obvious things or just sounding like amateurish fan fiction. I admit, it is interesting to think what could have or might have been and how our collective memories of Star Wars would be different, if a different version of Yoda or AT-AT or Boba Fett would have made it to the silver screen, but that's about it. All in all, this is Star Wars art book that nice to look at but not essential.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Parka

    (More pictures at parkablogs.com) This book is much better than the first art book as the script is removed and replaced with more art. The concept sketches and paintings are grouped under different sets: Hoth, Star Destroyer, Dagobah, Asteroid Belt, Bespin, Rebel Cruiser. Storyboards, character designs, matte paintings, vehicle designs, models fill the pages. The concept design for old Yoda are hilarious, no offense intended, with a few looking like smurfs or Santa's elves. There are not much (More pictures at parkablogs.com) This book is much better than the first art book as the script is removed and replaced with more art. The concept sketches and paintings are grouped under different sets: Hoth, Star Destroyer, Dagobah, Asteroid Belt, Bespin, Rebel Cruiser. Storyboards, character designs, matte paintings, vehicle designs, models fill the pages. The concept design for old Yoda are hilarious, no offense intended, with a few looking like smurfs or Santa's elves. There are not much text except for chapter openings that explain the set design and creation. It's a great book for fans and sci-fi concept artists. The original book was published way back in 1980 with a reprint in 1994.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Jeff Lanter

    I am going through and re-reading books from my childhood and I'm continuing with The Art of Star Wars books. I bought these when they came out and have fond memories of them. The book is two parts: the background information on how characters and scenery were made and the art itself. Just like with A New Hope, I really enjoyed the storyboards, concept art, models used in the movie, and other pieces of art that was produced before the actual movie was shot. What separates this one from the last I am going through and re-reading books from my childhood and I'm continuing with The Art of Star Wars books. I bought these when they came out and have fond memories of them. The book is two parts: the background information on how characters and scenery were made and the art itself. Just like with A New Hope, I really enjoyed the storyboards, concept art, models used in the movie, and other pieces of art that was produced before the actual movie was shot. What separates this one from the last is the extra information about how the Dagobah set was made and how they came up with Yoda among many other pieces of information. This information was fascinating and I liked it better than the movie script. Serious fans of Star Wars will really enjoy these books.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Andrew

    This book really carries on the story of the star wars saga - (not the film but the creation if its atmosphere and iconic images) - see my review of "The Art of Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope" to see the story behind the book for myself and enjoy the beauty of the book behind the film. over the years many books have come out from the star wars franchise some little more than re-hashed means of milking more money while others (as is this book) is a window in to an aspect of the film never see This book really carries on the story of the star wars saga - (not the film but the creation if its atmosphere and iconic images) - see my review of "The Art of Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope" to see the story behind the book for myself and enjoy the beauty of the book behind the film. over the years many books have come out from the star wars franchise some little more than re-hashed means of milking more money while others (as is this book) is a window in to an aspect of the film never seen before - the concept art, the sketch and the evolution of what became one of the most recognised films of its era.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Brian

    I'm not a big Star Wars fan, but this is one of the best making-of books I've seen. Full-color concept art arranged in a legible layout. Don't miss the two-page spread of concept sketches for Yoda. (The text-based rainbow cover on my 1980 edition is much cooler than this!) I'm not a big Star Wars fan, but this is one of the best making-of books I've seen. Full-color concept art arranged in a legible layout. Don't miss the two-page spread of concept sketches for Yoda. (The text-based rainbow cover on my 1980 edition is much cooler than this!)

  13. 4 out of 5

    Curtiss

    Another art-collection/movie script tie-in to the Star Wars phenomenon.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Rick

    Very fun to see a lot of Ralph McQuarrie original concept art and how it differed from what made it into the movie.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Joe

    Another book with wondrous sketches, including the what ifs for what became the walkers.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Thomas

  17. 4 out of 5

    Roby Dorsett

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

  19. 5 out of 5

    Sára Petrov

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lonnie Cannon

  21. 5 out of 5

    Chan

  22. 5 out of 5

    Mirabella

  23. 5 out of 5

    Carrie Cook

  24. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

  25. 5 out of 5

    Foxy

  26. 5 out of 5

    David

  27. 4 out of 5

    Vince

  28. 5 out of 5

    Robert Barker

  29. 5 out of 5

    Margaret

  30. 4 out of 5

    Violet Vandor

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