STAR WARS: EPISODE II EASTER EGGS
The Star Wars films are brimming with so much detail, that they require
multiple viewings to soak it all in. First time screenings are to watch
the main characters and the core story, but with subsequent viewings
it’s hard not to let your eye wander and take in some of the extras.
Sometimes, the details are intentional elements meant to remind you how
the galaxy fits together. Other times, it’s an unintentional flub that
illustrates the complexities of filmmaking (keep track of the color of
the clothes that PadmÈ packs on Coruscant in Episode II, for example).
And, on occasion, the filmmakers purposely put in a little visual joke
to reward sharp-eyed (or in some cases, sharp-eared) movie-goers.
Here’s some of the things to watch for the next time you go to see
Attack of the Clones.
Trundling along the streets of Mos Espa as Anakin and PadmÈ
go to meet Watto is none other than R5-D4, the grumpy astromech
from Episode IV that blows its stack in front of Luke.
What has become a tradition of sorts is the “Wilhelm,” the
affectionate moniker given to a very distinct scream sound effect
used in all of the Star Wars films (and quite a few non-Star Wars
films too). In A New Hope, it’s the stormtrooper that plummets
down the Death Star chasm. In Episode II, it’s a Naboo soldier
thrown in the opening explosion of the film.
The very first shot of Episode II has an homage to another
sci-fi classic as the camera tilts up to the crowded orbital
traffic of Coruscant. “That shot had been executed in 2001: A
Space Odyssey,” explains John Knoll, one of Episode II’s
Visual Effects Supervisors. “I put an Orion space plane
flying in there.”
Star Wars continuity purists will have a hard time
explaining just how an X-wing fighter and TIE fighter got
into the speeder chase over Coruscant.
By now, many have spotted the familiar Millennium Falcon-style
Corellian freighters docked on Naboo. “It was George Lucas’
idea,” says VFX Supervisor Pablo Helman. “He said something
like, ‘should we dare go there?’ And we did.” In addition to
those saucer-shaped freighters, expanded universe fans might
be able to spot a Corellian bulk freighter, the same model as
Talon Karrde’s Wild Karrde.
It appears that Fett genes and low headroom don’t mix. In
an homage to the classic Star Wars misstep, wherein a
stormtrooper bangs his head on a low-hanging door, Jango
Fett also takes a wallop on the noggin — complete with
sound effect — as he enters the Slave I after
tangling with Obi-Wan.
“There’s these big cow-like creatures called shaaks that
Anakin rides on Naboo,” explains Knoll. “The shaaks got to
be a bit of a joke with the crew. I put one in the asteroid
sequence, in a reference to Ken Ralston [visual effects artist
in the classic trilogy] having put potatoes and tennis shoes
in space battle scenes previously. So there’s a shaak there,
but it’s got the asteroid shader on it with craters. You really
can’t see it unless you start to look at it and see the
legs and snout.”
“There may be a shaak on fire during the Clone War,” hints
Ben Snow, another of Episode II’s Visual Effects Supervisors.
“It was almost a competition. Can anyone get a shaak in
Of course, for every confirmed Easter Egg, there are dozens of imagined
ones (Luke’s landspeeder? Sebulba? Darth Maul? Joey Fatone?). Keep a
close eye on the screen during your next viewing, but remember: your
eyes can deceive you; don’t trust them.
I haven’t found the opportunity to see it a fifth time yet!
STAR WARS: EPISODE II EASTER EGGS