Monday, March 24, 2008

Concept R2-D2 and C3-P0

One of my favorite concept artist, and a reason I decided it would be fun to draw for a living, Ralph McQuarrie did a few little concepts for a little movie called Stars at War (or something like that). Last year Hasbro decided to release 12 of the most hard to find figures based on his artwork. This pair of droids was a set from that release.

R2-D2 and C3-P0 here were exclusive sold at the Star Wars Celebration last year. If you didn't get to go, like myself, a figure company called Toy Rocket bought up the stock and sold them online. Thing is I've checked Toy Rocket before, and their prices are really high, but for a limited time the sold these for what the were going for at the Celebration. Now Star Wars Shop is carrying what ever is left.

The pair is based on one of McQuarrie's concept paintings that were used to sell the idea of Star Wars to 20th Century Fox back in the 70's. C3-P0 really does look like the Metropolis Robot, though the painting has more of a wide eyed, vacant stare than the figure. R2 is a little shorter and he has extra arms hanging about his dome. I really thought these figures were great when they were announced and apparently so did everyone else, going by how hard they are to find. I finally just gave up, with plans on waiting a little while and maybe pick up the remaining ones I want on sites like E-bay or Hasbro Toy Shop.

The thing is that these are just representations of his artwork. Galloob back in the 90's released a set of concept vehicles (as did Hasbro w/ figures) and even had Ralph McQuarrie produce new artwork for the outside of some playsets. You would think these would be hard to find, but for some reason these figures have struck a cord with the collector, or were just released at the right time. Either way they are pretty cool to have kicking around the drawing desk for inspiration and to keep concept Luke company.


rob! said...

Lucas is looting his universe for toy ideas to the very walls.

i don't mean to sound insulting, its just funny to think, what other universe has such devoted fans (Trek?) that could financially support toys based on discarded ideas?

Bubbashelby said...

These McQuarrie figs pulled me back in - I have Vader, Fett, Stormtrooper (which was actually released years ago), Luke, and Snowtrooper. I really need C3PO and R2 but I'll wait until they're milked...I mean released to the general populace.