George Lucas isn't rich beyond a Hutt's dreams because he was a great director or writer. His vast fortune is a result of his shrewd decision to hold onto the merchandising rights to his space opera many years ago. A new book called A New Proof takes a look at what was involved in bringing the first official Star Wars toys to the film's rabid fans back in the late 1970s, and how it helped change movie marketing forever.
By now it's just assumed that a blockbuster film is going to hit theatres with a huge collection of toys in tow, but that wasn't always the case. Star Wars was the first film to really capitalise on its success to sell a bunch of merchandise while it was in theatres, and A New Proof takes an in-depth focused look at the process Kenner went through to design and produce the packaging for the original Star Wars figures. What's most surprising is that they look incredibly close to the figure packaging still in use today.
A New Proof is already shipping, and you can order a copy of the 152-page softcover book for $US50 which includes the cost of shipping anywhere around the world. And if you can't imagine why anyone would care about what went into designing the packaging for a bunch of plastic figurines, you probably know a Star Wars fan or graphic designer who would. [Dear Publications via Laughing Squid]