Saturday, September 1, 2012
A Long Time Ago...
The top building is the Main House, where pre- and post-production occur. It's a beautiful facility, particularly the research library which supports productions across a myriad of studios, in both film and television.
The bottom postcard is known as the Tech Building and is home to Skywalker Sound, including a variety of recording and mixing stages and a wonderful theater. When I joined the company, Skywalker Ranch was overflowing with employees and the expansion to other complexes, including eventually the Letterman Digital Arts Center (LDAC) in the Presidio in San Francisco, all occurred during my time there (though my office never left the Ranch). The Yoda statue is on the Presidio grounds and visible to the general public.
I came on between the releases of Episode I and II, and my job often meant a deep immersion into the history of the studio and the Star Wars productions in particular (though certainly not limited to that). So the release of the Star Wars stamps by the USPS also occurred during my time there. Below is just a small selection of the many hundreds of First-Day-of-Issue postmarks on postcards I have that are Star Wars related. Maybe one day I'll see fit to part with a handful (I have quite a few duplicates) but for now, here's a sample that evoke different things about my memorable time working there.
The Star Wars stamp Scott #s are all 4143, with a letter denoting the different illustrations: Darth Vader (a), Millennium Falcon (b), Anakin vs Obi-Wan (d), Luke (e), Leia & R2 (f), C-3PO (g), Queen Amidala (h), Ben Kenobi (i), Boba Fett (j), Darth Maul (k), X-wing (m), Yoda (n) and Stormtroopers (o). The other Yoda stamp (note the different postmark and date) is a re-release based on balloting of the fan favorites from all the original stamps. That Scott # is 4205.
The stamp joined with Vader on the Main House card is the oldest movie stamp ever, Scott #926. The two stamps other stamps on the Tech building card are the centennial of sound recording and the 50th anniversary of talking motion pictures (Scott #1705 & 1727 respectively). The latter was actually released in 1977 (50 years after The Jazz Singer), which was also the year the original Star Wars rocked the world.