If you can imagine (or remember) a time when Star Wars wasn’t a household name, and the space western was considered something of a gamble to produce and fund, you might somehow understand how 20th Century Fox was able, with a straight face, to allow creator George Lucas to pass up hundreds of thousands of dollars in directing fees in exchange for retaining the Star Wars licensing and merchandising rights.
The results, now, are well-documented SW lore. Fans’ craving for everything Star Wars put toy company Kenner on the map, and by the time they were able to meet the unexpected and overwhelming demand, 40 million action figures were in the hands of kids and collectors by 1978. And that was just the beginning of what is now a multi-billion dollar toy franchise.
They weren’t perfect – those first toys. They were poorly articulated (maybe not for their time, but…
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