Star Wars Day

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Star Wars Day
TypeFandom/cultural
SignificanceHonoring Star Wars
DateMay 4 (annually)
 
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Star Wars Day
TypeFandom/cultural
SignificanceHonoring Star Wars
DateMay 4 (annually)

Star Wars Day is an unofficial holiday in May created by fans to honor the Star Wars franchise created by George Lucas. Observance of the holiday spread quickly due to Internet, social media, and grassroots celebrations.[1]

May 4[edit]

May 4 is considered a holiday by Star Wars fans to celebrate the franchise's films series, books, and culture.[2] The date was chosen for the easy pun on the phrase "May the Force be with you"—"May the fourth be with you".

History[edit]

The reference was first used on May 4, 1979, the day Margaret Thatcher took office as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. Thatcher's political party, the Conservatives, placed a congratulatory advertisement in The London Evening News that stated "May the Fourth Be with You, Maggie. Congratulations."[3] This reading of the line has also been recorded in the UK Parliament's Hansard.[4]

In 2011, the first organized celebration of Star Wars Day took place in Toronto, Ontario, Canada at the Toronto Underground Cinema. Produced by Sean Ward and Alice Quinn, festivities included an Original Trilogy Trivia Game Show; a costume contest with celebrity judges; and the web's best tribute films, mash-ups, parodies, and remixes on the big screen. The second annual edition took place on Friday, May 4, 2012.[5]

Fans (even government officials[6]) have celebrated Star Wars in a variety of ways in social media and on television.

Since 2013, Disney Parks have celebrated the holiday with several Star Wars events and festivities.[7] The Walt Disney Company had purchased Lucasfilm including the rights to Star Wars in late 2012.[8]

Minor League baseball teams such as the Toledo Mud Hens[9] and the Durham Bulls[10] have worn special uniforms as part of Star Wars Day promotions.

Revenge of the Fifth[edit]

Star Wars Day became so popular that the following day was jokingly called “Revenge of the Fifth,” a play on the Star Wars movie title Revenge of the Sith. On this day, fans join the “Dark Side” by celebrating the Sith Lords and villains from the Star Wars series.[11]

May 25[edit]

The Los Angeles City Council declared May 25, 2007, as Star Wars Day, in honor of the 30th anniversary release date of Star Wars.[12] A separate initiative for observing Geek Pride Day on May 25 is based on the Star Wars connection along with ties to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (see Towel Day) and Discworld.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^
  2. ^ "Star Wars day: May the 4th be with you". My Fox Chattanooga. May 4, 2010. Archived from the original on May 8, 2010. Retrieved May 8, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Danish National Radio on-line news". 
  4. ^ "Hansard, Column 786". UK Parliament Hansard, Column 784. May 4, 1994. 
  5. ^ "Star Wars Day Toronto official site". 
  6. ^ "Boris Johnson's acceptance speech in full". ITV News. May 5, 2012. Retrieved May 8, 2013. 
  7. ^
  8. ^ "How Disney Bought Lucasfilm—and Its Plans for Star Wars". Bloomburg Businessweek. Retrieved April 28, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Toledo Mud Hens will wear Chewbacca uniforms for ‘Star Wars’ weekend". New York Daily News. April 28, 2013. Retrieved May 3, 2014. 
  10. ^ Andrew kenney (March 25, 2014). "Durham Bulls to dress as R2-D2 from 'Star Wars' on May 4". News & Observer. Retrieved May 3, 2014. 
  11. ^ http://www.mtv.com/news/1819357/a-brief-history-of-star-wars-celebration-may-the-fourth/
  12. ^ Jan Perry (May 1, 2007). "Resolution: Star Wars". Los Angeles City Council. 
  13. ^