Imagine if George Lucas took the Japanese inspiration for Star Wars a little further back in the 1970s and produced an anime film instead. Pretty enticing, huh?
Well, that scenario is a little easier to envision now thanks to talented animator and Star Wars fan Ahriman…
Ahriman, also known as Dmitry Grozov, has produced a jaw-dropping trailer for an anime version of A New Hope that looks like it rolled straight out of the early 80s. From the solid gold Lucasfilm logo to the brilliant voice cast through to just how lush every single shot looks, this is a version of Star Wars that I would pay good money to see more of.
I mean, a synth-voiced Vader speaking Japanese? Hell and yes, my friends!
Of course, talking about fan-made Star Wars anime makes it the perfect time to mention this classic…
OtaKing77077, otherwise known as Paul Johnson, is the one-man animator behind the stunning anime TIE Fighter short film. It’s a savage look at the intergalactic civil war from the Empire’s point of view that pays serious homage to the excellent LucasArts video game of the same name – which would be enough to earn it a thumbs up from me even if it wasn’t a brilliant animation in its own right.
There’s a re-edited version making the rounds at the moment that uses the music from Battlefront II and Rogue One, in case you want a more traditional Star Wars fix. But for my tastes the crunching guitar of the original suits the whole aesthetic much better.
Back in early 2000 I found some incredible manga-styled illustrations of Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Maul online that I printed out to decorate my school folders with. It’s no surprise to see how well the Star Wars universe fits the anime style, and I doubt I’m alone in thinking it would be amazing to see both of these videos extended to full-length features…
The Star Wars fandom is a god-awful place these days. Even so, these inspired pieces of work are great reminders of how awesome individual fans can be.