What you see here is an R2-D2 inspired Xbox 360, along with a C-3PO Xbox 360 controller, and you'll find these as part of the Star Wars Kinect bundle that was revealed by Microsoft at Comic-Con. Also included in the bundle is a white Kinect sensor, Star Wars Kinect, and Kinect Adventures. The console also includes a 320 GB hard drive, which is a first for the Xbox 360 line. The console itself has custom R2-D2 sounds rather than the standard Xbox 360 chimes. You can pre-order these now, and they'll be shipping in the fall for $449.
Read More | Star Wars Kinect Bundle
LucasArts and Sony Online Entertainment announced last week that they will shut down Star Wars Galaxies, effective December 15.
"The shutdown of SWG is a very difficult decision, but SOE and LucasArts have mutually agreed that the end of 2011 is the appropriate time to end the game," the companies said in a note on the game's support forum.
The closure affects the MMO and the Trading Card Game. To soften the blow, Sony and LucasArts said the current SWG community will be able to take advantage of a "galaxy-ending in-game event" in December.
"During the last week that SWG is available ... we're going to end with a bang and we want the final chapter of the galaxy to be written in part by the dedicated and passionate SWG community. Details will be announced at a later date," the companies said.
Active SWG subscribers in good standing, meanwhile, will be able to play several SOE massively multiplayer online PC games at the subscriber level at no extra charge. Between October 15 and December 15, those users will have access to Free Realms, Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures, EverQuest, EverQuest II, and DC Universe Online via the Star Wars Galaxies Web site.
Is this a superhero-free weekend at the movies? X-Men First Class was last week, next week is Green Lantern. Are we mask-free for a few days?
No, because the powers in Hollywood have decided there can be no nerd gap in the relatively short summer season and have given us Super 8.
Go see it right now, and then come back and click some links:
Superman: If you’re at all interested in the new DC reboot coming up, legal eagle Jeff Trexler at Comics Beat has a fascinating post about the wrangling that’s gone on between the Superman creators and DC’s corporate parent over the years and how it’s affected publishing decisions.
Superman II: And Daniel Best at 20th Century Danny Boy unearths a great selection of early correspondence between various DC Comics people and Jerry Siegel. It’s great reading.
Superman III: Comedy writer Ken Levine (M*A*S*H; Almost Perfect; Volunteers) weighs in on the new Superman.
Lucas Licensing, that tiny little division of the massive Star Wars empire, is looking for a new Emperor, I mean, Senior Editor.
You'll be "responsible for all aspects of development, editing and approvals for the adult fiction and comics program." Sound great yet?
There's more, of course, by why bother reading when you could be dropping your resume over there Right. This. Second.
Here's some more in case you're not convinced yet: "Creatively develop new storylines for Star Wars fiction/comics to maintain and grow our readership."
Or how about this: "Work with publishers and Publishing team to identify appropriate writers and/or illustrators for each project."
You'll need some education, of course, and at least "5-7 years of publishing experience and 3-5 years as an editor" but that is nothing compared to your nerd cred: "Solid knowledge and demonstrated interest in Lucasfilm brands" and "solid knowledge of SW fiction (expanded universe)."
Good luck, job seekers!
[Artwork: Knight Errant: Aflame, a new trade paperback from Dark Horse, coming in August and © Lucasfilm]
Everyone who’s anyone in the indie comics scene is currently at MoCCA Fest 2011 in New York. But me? I’m just linking to stuff.
Write: Comic book retailer and blogger Mike Sterling is part of a group that runs Fake AP Stylebook. They’ve got a book out, Write More Good, and for those of us who love to laugh, it’s a must-have. Back away from the DC and Marvel relaunches and put your money to a better use. Here's a taste from the book: "While it's tempting to call them baristi because of the Italian roots, the plural of barista is journalism majors."
It even got a nice review in The New Yorker. “Write More Good, like the account from which it grew, is a tongue-in-cheek takedown of an industry already on shaky ground.”
Maberry: Marvel Comics writer Jonathan Maberry is also a novelist. SF Signal breaks down his latest Joe Ledger novel and gives it thumbs up. “Great conspiracy thinking with large events; misdirection; interesting, complex criminals who don't like each other; a great dog and destruction of one of Maberry's favorite writing places!”
We know a ton of Star Wars fans have been waiting for confirmation of when the series would be available for purchase on Blu-ray, and we finally have a date that's set in stone. You'll be able to pick up Star Wars: The Complete Saga, Star Wars: Original Trilogy, and Star Wars: Prequel Trilogy on September 16, 2011. In an interesting move, this is a Friday. Movie releases tend to fall on Tuesdays, but we're guessing that there are people hardcore enough to camp out for this thing and take time off work to tear through it, so having the weekend to do so is an added bonus.
You can pre-order the Star Wars Blu-ray set from Amazon at a significant discount:
May the Force be with you.
In the pantheon of Star Wars material, my favorite movie is The Empire Strikes Back. My next favorites? The Robot Chicken specials.
So I was thrilled to read that over the weekend the writers on Robot Chicken: Star Wars Episode III just won an Annie Award for Writing In A Television Production.
The credited writers are Matthew Beans, Zeb Wells, Hugh Sterbakov, Matthew Senreich, Breckin Meyer, Seth Green, Mike Fasolo, Douglas Goldstein, Tom Root, Dan Milano, Kevin Shinick & Hugh Davidson along with one other guy: DC Comics' Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns.
Congratulation to all the winners!
The Brewmasters at Cartoon Brew have all the details on all the winners. Be sure the read through the comments while you're there!
[Artwork: Robot Chicken Star Wars Episode III]
If you follow the news and keep track of current events, you already know that Tunisia is in a state of emergency. The president has fled the country and there's chaos galore.
But the nerd in me has questions: Is Mos Eisley safe? Can I still hire a mercenary pilot at the Cantina? Will I be able to get my power converters at Tosche Station? Is Obi Wan's house still standing?
What's that you say? What am I talking about?
As any Star Wars fan knows, Mos Eisley, Anchorhead, Uncle Owen's farm and more are all places of interest in the first (or is it the fourth?) Star Wars movie, A New Hope.
And they were all shot on location in Tunisia which creator-director George Lucas called "the ideal country for filming: beautiful countryside, unique architecture and a very high level of technical sophistication."
So I have to ask. Is Tatooine safe?
My cable to the U.S. Embassy there has gone unanswered.
[Artwork: Bantha, making tracks in Tunisia]
ASIFA-Hollywood announced their nominations for the 38th Annual Annie Awards this past week.
The essential animation blog, Cartoon Brew, has a complete list of the nominations.
If you like controversy, be sure to read the comments, too!
A couple of people with comic book connections popped up on the list of nominees.
Stephen DeStefano, artist on Lucky In Love from Fantagraphics, is up for Character Design in a Television Production for his work on the Cartoon Network series Sym-Bionic Titan.
Phil Hester and Andy Kuhn’s Image Comic Firebreather, the Cartoon Network original movie that aired at the end of November, got itself two nominations. In the category Production Design in a Television Production, Barry Jackson is one of the nominees. In the category Directing in a Television Production, director Peter Chung was nominated as well.
If you took the time to read through the nearly 250,000 documents released this week via Wikileaks, you’d find a comic book connection in several of them. We at Comix 411 have nothing but free time and did the heavy lifting for you. Here are the comic book-related highlights from the document dump:
When visiting with US President Barack Obama, the CIA codename for Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is “Bucky.”
Interrogators at Guantanamo routinely asked prisoners to choose: Betty or Veronica?
Supreme Leader of North Korea Kim Jong Il sometimes dresses up as Wildcat before he tours a factory. In other news, North Korea still has factories.
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