In its almost 46 years of existence, the “Star Wars” universe has produced some…interesting…bits of media and merchandise. But none of the anomalies have captured the public’s interest quite like the “Star Wars Holiday Special.” Feature-length documentary“A Disturbance in the Force” will examine how and why the Holiday Special happened. It will be premiering at the upcoming 2023 South by Southwest (SXSW) film festival.
The “Star Wars Holiday Special” was directed by Steve Binder. It takes place between the events of “A New Hope” and “Empire Strikes Back.” The special follows Han Solo as he visits Chewbacca on his home planet of Kashyyyk to celebrate “Life Day.” Pretty much the Wookie version of Christmas. The festivities are cut short when they find out agents of the Galactic Empire are in pursuit of members of the Rebel Alliance on the planet.
During the “Star Wars Holiday Special,” we are introduced to three members of Chewbacca’s family; Itchy (his father), Malla (his wife), and Lumpy (his son). We also meet, for the very first time, fan-favorite character Boba Fett.
The special was universally panned by fans and critics alike. It was such a bomb, Lucasfilm never rebroadcasted or officially released it on home video. Meaning the only way you could see it was via VHS bootlegs. This caused the special to sink into obscurity until the internet rediscovered this odd entry into the “Star Wars” universe.
“A Disturbance in the Force” will examine why and how this strange 2-hour bit of media even got made. The documentary is directed by Jeremy Coon and Steve Kozak. It will also include interviews discussing the making of and cultural phenomenon the “Star Wars Holiday Special” has become. These interviews include Seth Green, Weird Al Yankovic, Taran Killam, Gilbert Gottfried, Bonnie Burton, Paul Scheer, Bruce Vilanch, Lenny Ripps, Donny Osmond, and Miki Herman. Coon and Kozak also produce this documentary alongside Adam F. Goldberg and Kyle Newman.
“A Disturbance in The Force” will premiere some time during SXSW 2023. There is no official release date. So be sure to check back for updates as they develop. Check out the teaser trailer below: