Kiri’s Mega Awesome Star Wars Celebration Schedule

This is not an April Fools post.  Sorry.  Also sorry I haven’t posted in a while.  I have about three half-finished blog posts and because I’ve been so busy, I can’t even finish them!

This time of year is always the busiest for me, so expect to hear a little less until the end of April.  And then expect majorly long posts about my adventure at Star Wars Celebration, haha!


I can’t wait…I’m so excited and it’s less than a month away.  It’s strange to think that a month from now, it’ll be all over.  I’m going out there on Wednesday and returning Sunday.  They announced last week that they’ll have the directors of the standalone movies (Gareth Edwards and Josh Trank) there on Sunday, so I’m a little bummed I’ll be missing that.  Originally, I was thinking of going Thursday and leaving Monday because most conventions put the big event last to try to get people to stay for the whole thing.  But with this event, JJ Abrams and Kathleen Kennedy are going to be presenting on Thursday, so I was a little surprised to see how they’re starting the event with a bang.  Thankfully I hadn’t booked my plane tickets when they announced that so I will be there to see them.  They are presenting at 10am, so I will probably have to start waiting in line around 7am.  Gah.  And even then, I’m not guaranteed that I’ll actually see them on the main stage.  From the schedule, it looks like they will broadcast the panel into many different rooms to handle the overflow. So maybe 3 hours is not enough time to wait in line and I’ll end up shunted to a simulcast room.

What I’m really hoping is that they surprise us with some TFA guests at the panel.  That would just be awesome TFA castbecause there are no TFA guests scheduled to be there right now, other than Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Anthony Daniels.  If we can’t get the guests, I’ll settle for viewing the new trailer which will hopefully tell us a little more of what will be going on in the movie.  Hear that JJ and KK??  Give us some TFA action at your panel!  I found out yesterday that the new trailer is set to present with the new Avengers movie (no one saw that coming lol) but I’m still hoping and praying we get to see it at the panel.  There are tons of rumors saying that’ll happen but I haven’t seen it confirmed. Or clips.  At Celebration II they showed us a 15 minutes segment from AOTC, but I don’t think that’ll happen this time for two reasons.  1) Celebration II was only a month away from the release date of AOTC so most people knew characters and a basic plot already, and 2) Abrams and Kennedy would not be so dumb because now everyone has smart phones, can film it, and post it on YouTube.

I did look into setting up a live twitter feed stream on my page but it doesn’t look like you can do it with the free WordPress (you need the paid version which supports plugins).  So you guys will have to be okay with the widget on the sidebar.  I’ll try to remember to put my Instagram on the side bar too.  Feel free to look at the panels too and tell me any that stand out to you!

Here is my schedule, subject to change of course:

Thursday 4/16

7-10:00am – Wait in line

10-11:00am – Writer/Director/Producer J.J. Abrams and Producer Kathleen Kennedy

12-1:00pm – Restored music from the Empire Strikes Back with David Collins

  • Take a deeper look at the iconic music of Star Wars as David Collins reveals story connections and hidden musical secrets within John Williams’ iconic film scores. And for the first time ever, watch scenes from The Empire Strikes Back with the original music restored!

12:30-1:30pm – Star Wars Costumes

  • Lucasfilm executive editor J.W. Rinzler Brandon Alinger, author of Star Wars Costumes: The Original Trilogy and Delia Greve, senior editor at Becker Mayer discuss the costumes of the three films that started it all. Learn about George Lucas’ concepts for the outfits in his films, and the many concept artists, costume designers, fabricators and artisans who brought them to life. The behind-the-scenes style discussion will focus on the unique challenges and triumphs of the costume departments for A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi. Also included will be additional photography shot for Star Wars Costumes: The Original Trilogy.

*Notice how I have a conflict here.  I’m really unsure which I want to go to.  I *love* the music of Star Wars so I think the first panel could be very interesting.  On the other hand, J.W. Rinzler has a wealth of knowledge and I’ve never seen him live, but read a lot of his articles in Insider and his Making Of books.  The only problem is, the costumes aren’t that interesting to me and I’ve read a lot about the costumes already in his Making Of books, Insider snippets, and museum exhibits I’ve been to.

What do you guys think?

1:30-2:30pm – break & explore the Exhibit Hall

2:30-4:00pm – Wait in line for McDiarmid panel

4-5:00pm – Ian McDiarmid: The Emperor Strikes Back

  • Actor Ian McDiarmid, who brought the deliciously evil Senator/Emperor Palpatine to life in the Star Wars saga, will be on stage to talk about his career in the performing arts as well as his time spend in the galaxy far, far away.

5-7:00pm – Dinner

7-8:00pm – The Hero’s Journey & The Power of Myth

  • The world of mythology and Joseph Campbell’s work breaking down the hero’s journey were two of the most important and influential components in the creation of Star Wars and still influence it constantly. Watch a panel of experts dissect the mythology that inspired Star Wars and discuss journey of the heroes inside of it.

This last panel is dependent on the fact that I might not be exhausted and ready to fall asleep since it’ll be 10pm Eastern Time.


Friday 4/17

10:30-11:30am – Bryan Young: Star Wars Journalism

  • Covering the galaxy far, far away as a journalist is not an easy challenge. Bryan Young, who writes for outlets like Huffington Post and Big Shiny Robot! (as well as the StarWars.Com blog), will be joined by Amy Ratciffe, Tracy Duncan, and Eric Geller to talk about how to cover Star Wars, how to deal with spoilers, and what the definition of “confirmed” is, among other things.

11:30-12:30pm – Ralph McQuarrie: Star Wars Art

  • Lucasfilm executive editor J.W. Rinzler, Abrams senior editor Eric Klopfer and authors Brandon Alinger, David Mandel and Wade Lageose discuss the seminal Star Wars artist and the upcoming book on his work. The new Abrams publication, set for release in Spring 2016, will be the most comprehensive volume of Ralph McQuarrie’s extensive Star Wars work ever assembled. McQuarrie’s long history with Lucasfilm will be covered in the discussion, from his early days working directly with George Lucas through the publications he worked on in the mid-90s. The team will talk about the process of creating the coffee-table book and show many highlight artworks in this exclusive preview.

12:30-1:30pm – Jeffrey Brown & Holman Wang: Star Wars: Bridging Generations

  • Jeffrey Brown and Holman Wang speak to adults and kids on their whimsical views of the Star Wars universe. Join them as they discuss experiencing and sharing Star Wars with your kids. Holman will also share a behind-the-scenes look at how he crafted classic movie scenes in exact 1:7 scale. Each attendee will also get a project sheet with instructions on how to make a needle-felted Jawa! Jeffrey Brown is the author and illustrator of Darth Vader and Son, Vader’s Little Princess, Goodnight Darth Vader, Darth Vader and Friends and the Jedi Academy series. Holman Wang is the co-author and illustrator of Star Wars Epic Yarns, a new board book series abridging each movie in the original trilogy in just 12 words and 12 needle-felted scenes.

1:30-2:30pm – Date With The Princess: Carrie Fisher

  • Fresh from the set of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Carrie Fisher talks about her life in the entertainment industry, her history in the Star Wars saga, and just about everything else that comes to mind.

Okay, so these 4 panels really are life in an ideal universe.  I will not be able to get to them because the line for Carrie Fisher will be ridiculously long and I have to get in line early.  So honestly, I will probably go to the 10:30am panel and then head over to wait in line for the Carrie Fisher panel at 11:30.  And force my hubby to get me lunch while I wait in line.

3-4:00pm – One Big Story: Working Within the Star Wars Canon

  • Last year Lucasfilm announced the beginning of a brand-new approach to storytelling: the continuing Star Wars universe would be one huge, entirely connected, canon saga across all media, overseen by the Lucasfilm Story Group. As a major provider of non-film or TV related creative content, publishers bear a responsibility to tell new and exciting stories within these parameters. What’s it like knowing that the projects you are working on are considered canon? How do you approach storytelling so it fits in with so many other types of media? How can publishers work together to help fans feel like they really are reading one big universe? And exactly where does the Story Group fit in? Join Michael Siglain, creative director and Jennifer Heddle, senior editor, from Lucasfilm and Disney publishing; editor-at-large Shelly Shapiro from Del Rey; editor Jordan D. White, VP International Development; C.B. Cebulski from Marvel; managing editor Sadie Smith from DK; and Leland Chee from the Lucasfilm Story Group as they discuss the new world that has opened up for Star Wars storytelling, and how to navigate the intricately interconnected world of a galaxy far, far away.

3-5:30pm – The Celebration Cosplay Contest

  • Celebrity hosts Dee Bradley Baker and James Arnold Taylor welcome judges Dave Filoni, Ashley Eckstein, and Amy Beth Christenson to the Celebration Cosplay Contest. See the best of Star Wars costumes light up the stage, and see who will take home top honors.

So another 2 conflicting panels.  My hope is that they’ll let me sneak into the cosplay contest after the Star Wars canon panel.  Because I don’t want to skip the Canon panel as that’s something that is really interesting to me.  I also highly doubt they’ll let me sneak into the Cosplay contest.  They flat out refused me and Mr. Reticent at Boston ComicCon because they were full.  But maybe Star Wars fans will be nicer!!!  Eh?

7-8:00pm – Anthony Daniels: Inside the Heart & Chaos of C-3PO

  • Anthony Daniels, the one actor to appear in all seven movies thus far, will be on stage to present a unique hour of entertainment. Expect the unexpected when the man behind C-3PO takes the stage.

This may be a take it or leave it.  I have seen Anthony Daniels twice, I believe.  And he’s nice and all, but not really my sense of humor.  It’s fun but I may skip it if I get a better offer…like having dinner with my friend.


Saturday 4/18

11-12:00pm – New Allies and New Villains in Star Wars Rebels Season 2

  • Get a sneak peek at what’s to come in the second season of the Disney X.D. animated series Star Wars Rebels, which picks up right where the shocking season one finale left off! Members of the cast and crew, including Dave Filoni (Executive Producer, Supervising Director), Freddie Prinze, Jr. (Kanan), Vanessa Marshall (Hera), Tiya Sircar (Sabine), Steve Blum (Zeb), Taylor Gray (Ezra) and other special guests will discuss the startling story developments revealed at the end of season one and offer some can’t-miss exclusive previews of what’s to come in season two!

12-1:00pm – From World Wars to Star Wars

  • Explore the interesting and unexpected ways that “a long time ago” influenced a “galaxy far, far away.” Join blogger & historian Cole Horton as he gives fans a rare look into the wartime exploits of Peter Cushing, reveals how World War II built the Death Star, explores bizarre WWII super weapons, and much more.

Okay, not really interested in this panel, but I feel bad for my husband and I think this is the only panel that might semi-interest him.  So if they let us in after the Rebels panel then I think he’ll like this.

1-3:30pm – break

3:30-6:00pm – Wait in line

6-8:00pm – Double Feature! “Talking to Myself” Starring James Arnold Taylor & Mark Hamill: The Return of the Jedi

  • James Arnold Taylor’s critically-acclaimed one-man show takes the audience on a fast-paced, multimedia ride through the life of a voice actor. In the production Taylor performs more than 200 different voices live. Followed by an unforgettable hour with actor and voice actor Mark Hamill, who brings the iconic character of Luke Skywalker to life in the Star Wars saga. There will be one seating for the two shows, and a 15-minute intermission in between. If additional seating is available for Mark Hamill, those seats will be filled in during intermission.

rancor celebration VI

OKAY!  There you have it.  There are some super cool panels on Sunday that I’m sad I’m missing (like Billy Dee Williams, Doug Chiang, Tricia Barr’s panel and the standalone panel) but it is what it is.  Believe me – my schedule was more packed than this but I had to narrow it down and delete panels that are just not feasible.

Let me know your thoughts and if you think I made the right choices!


6 thoughts on “Kiri’s Mega Awesome Star Wars Celebration Schedule

  1. OOOOOOOH exciting! I personally would go for the music panel, and the canon one would be really interesting, too. And the Rebels preview. So much good stuff!

  2. We’ll be at Celebration, too! I still need to sit down and plan everything out like you have; so far I’ve just noted the panels I’d like to attend without considering the schedule implications. I figure I’ll be stuck in a simulcast for JJ since we won’t arrive in Anaheim until almost 7am…didn’t expect they’d have the main event so early on the first day!

    I have it on very good authority (namely my employer who has a strong licensing partnership with Lucasfilm and who leaked the news on our intranet site this morning) that the TFA trailer will, indeed, premiere at Celebration. I can’t confirm that it’ll be during the Abrams panel but I can’t imagine they’d do it any other way.

    Anyway, maybe we can try to meet up for some of the panels or something 🙂

    1. I’d love that! I wish they had a little area for all WP bloggers so we could all meet up. Are you going with anyone? I am dragging my husband along, poor guy, but I’m hoping he has *some* fun. I don’t think he understands how much waiting in line there will be.

      I can’t imagine them not doing the trailer at Celebration! That would be a HUGE mistake on their part. Do you live in California so are you driving?

      Anyway, send me an email (there’s a form under my “contact” tab) with your real name and as you nail down your schedule I’d love to say hi at one of the panels, see what you’ve learned, what you like/dislike, etc.

  3. Wish I could be there! So rad! re: conflict in panels…so hard! The costume vs the music one…both seem neat. In smaller conventions, I went for the ones that weren’t so crowded–but probably won’t apply here! Have a great time!

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