I love speaking to fellow Star Wars fans. Especially ones who are doing so much more for the community with their skills and passion than I am… It kinda makes me feel like part of something bigger.
And I most especially like it when they're doing something that benefits the community at large. Jimmy 'Mac' McInerney is one such person.
In a previous article, Cool Star Wars finds: Rebelforce Radio, I spoke with Jimmy, the driving force behind the RebelForce Radio about what producing a radio show focused completely on Star Wars was like, and why us Star Wars fans might be interested in tuning in.
And as promised, in the second part of this article, I got to asking him some more intimate questions on his personal odyssey as a Star Wars fan and his thoughts on the future of the franchise…
So, without further ado…
Do you remember the moment when you 'got into' Star Wars? ?
The first time I first saw Star Wars in 1977 at The Edens Theater in Northbrook IL, when I was eight years old. It was around August or so, making me a little late to the party. All my friends loved Star Wars and I was trying to see what the buzz was all about. After that afternoon inI became an instant fan. It truly was a huge cultural happening and I was right in the thick of it. Those were great times; the franchise was in it's infancy and I was on the ground floor of something that would sustain me as a fan for the next 35 years...and counting!
Your opinions on the Disney buyout and the future of the franchise?
I think the future of Star Wars looks very bright with the announcement of the long anticipated Sequel Trilogy. I don't think it would have ever happened if Lucas held onto control of the series. I just don't think he has the drive or motivation to tackle such a huge project. I am very excited about the people involved in the making of these new films. People like JJ Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan are totally qualified to deliver new Star Wars to the masses. I just hope the quality and attention to Lucas's original vision will be maintained.
I don't want to see a "Darth of the week" type situation with the films and TV shows. I want to see the series break new boundaries and set new standards in storytelling. I want the myth and legend of Star Wars to be enhanced and expanded, not re-booted . I want the spirituality and mystery of The Force to remain the backbone of the stories. I want the fast-paced adventure of the original films to remain consistent. I don't want to see brooding, angst-ridden youth. I want to see characters going on a hero's journey. I don't want to see a soap opera. As fans, we will know if we are seeing Star Wars or not . The traditions, flavour, rhythm, and FUN must be intact.
A most memorable Star Wars related moment or experience?
In my position as a longtime Star Wars podcast show host and broadcast professional, I have been able to have access to many people and places other fans cannot have. Its a big thrill for me to have a connection with Star Wars fans from around the world and I try to share my adventures with them. I have been to Skywalker Ranch for media junkets or to simply have lunch with the crew from Skywalker Sound. I sat in George Lucas's chair in a screening room at Lucasfilm Animation while watching amazing new Clone Wars episodes.
I have interviewed the biggest names in Star Wars face-to-face...People like Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams, and Lucas himself. I have covered red carpet events in LA and Orlando. I have hung out socially with many actors and behind-the-scenes players. But probably my best experiences with Star Wars are the times I have been able to share the stories with my children and see the films thru their eyes. It's been amazing to share my passion for the saga with them and I feel more closely connected with them thru Star Wars.
Your favourite line?
A line from from Episode One has great resonance for me. Liam Neeson's Qui Gon Ginn told Anakin Skywalker "Your focus determines your reality". Very Zen. Very true. Life is what we make of it. How you accept a situation greatly depends on your point of view. Stay positive and life will be positive... No matter how bad things may seem .
Did Han shoot first?
Anything else you recommend that other fans should be looking out for/looking forward to?
We are heading towards very exciting times for the saga. Be looking for speculation, and eventually, spoilers, from the Sequel Trilogy to emerge. Join in on the fun and reach out to fellow fans. Become part of the community and be active online and at conventions. Share the fun with the younger generation. And don't forget to listen to RebelForce Radio to hear all the latest developments from A Galaxy Far, Far Away.