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CT Intersection of the OT and History in the 70s and 80s

Discussion in 'Classic Trilogy' started by Darkslayer, Mar 6, 2024.

  1. Darkslayer

    Darkslayer #2 Sabine Wren Fan star 7

    Mar 26, 2013
    Thought this could be a fun discussion to have (if not, sorry mods, feel free to lock). So my day job is a U.S. history teacher, so I am someone who is always fascinated by what is going on in the world today, and learning about the people who got us to this point. I have recently been reading up on President Reagan, and made the fun discovery that he was a massive Star Wars fan.

    He famously referred to the Soviet Union as the "Evil Empire" in a speech, which is of course is about as on-the-nose as you can get:

    Additionally, there was the proposed "Star Wars" missile defense program, although we don't know if Reagan referred to it as such. Reagan also frequently held private screenings of the Original Trilogy at the White House.

    To those of you who were around during that time, how often was the OT referenced in this way by famous people? And has there been any movie with that effect since?
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2024
  2. gezvader28

    gezvader28 Chosen One star 6

    Mar 22, 2003
    I know Lucas did not like it being called the Star Wars Missile Defence System .

    Never heard that Reagan showed the trilogy at the WH.
  3. Sarge

    Sarge Chosen One star 10

    Oct 4, 1998
    Yeah, I was a teen in those days, and the various SW references and allusions were relatively common. I don't think anything else has been so universal or long-lasting in pop culture since then.
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  4. BlackRanger

    BlackRanger Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 14, 2018
    One could argue Reagan showing SW at the White House illustrates that Lucas failed to make the point clear to audiences that in his original conception, the conflict between the Rebels and the Empire was based on the Vietnam War, and the Rebels were the North Vietnamese. :p
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2024
  5. Django211

    Django211 Force Ghost star 4

    Mar 6, 1999
    I don't think it's a failure on Lucas' part. Reagan also used Born in the USA on his campaign trail despite never paying attention to the lyrics. He just assumed the song was patriotic because of the title & chorus. Unless all the rebels were portrayed as Vietnamese, Reagan wasn't going to get it.

    Growing up at that time you could see Star Wars everywhere. In the early days you were bound do see a lot of very bad Star Wars related stuff on TV. By the time of ESB it seems Lucas tightened his grip.

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  6. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 10

    Mar 26, 2001
    I just went to a presentation on the history of the holiday special by the people behind A Disturbance in the Force and the TV influences were part of a campaign to keep the original movie in theaters longer through interest.
  7. Clone8looper

    Clone8looper Jedi Padawan star 1

    Sep 5, 2023
    From Wikipedia - The first recorded reference of the phrase, may the 4th be with you, being used was on May 4, 1979, the day after Margaret Thatcher was elected as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. Her political party, the Conservatives, placed a congratulatory advertisement in the Evening News saying "May the Fourth Be with You, Maggie. Congratulations."

    Wiki has labeled this claim as being dubious.
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2024
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  8. Bor Mullet

    Bor Mullet Force Ghost star 8

    Apr 6, 2018
    Posting just to break up the Reagan-Thatcher bookends.
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  9. darklordoftech

    darklordoftech Force Ghost star 6

    Sep 30, 2012
    As late as 1981, Lucas referred to Palpatine as "Nixon".