MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — In a movie theater not too far away, Jedis and Storm Troopers are in full anticipation. The hype is in overdrive for Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
The biggest stars in the galaxy saw the world premiere last night in Hollywood. They gave the film an enthusiastic thumbs up.
The red carpet was a who’s who of Hollywood, with familiar characters from the original cast including: R2-D2, C-3P0, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and of course, Mark Hamill.
“It’s nice to have a job lined up for my twilight years,” Hamill said at the premiere. “It’s like a pensioner plan, now that I’m a Jedi Elder.”
The movie is being released on a record number of screens, over 41-hundred. It’s already brought in more than $50 million in presale tickets.
The rest of us only have a few more days to wait. The Force arrives in theaters on Thursday night, and already many of the opening weekend showings in the Twin Cities are sold out for a movie premiere unlike any other.
It seems fitting that a franchise that started nearly 40 years ago, would have a loyal following.
“They anticipate this to be the biggest opening of all time,” said John Andel of Paragon Odyssey 15 in Burnsville.
The Paragon will show The Force Awakens on multiple screens, every 15 minutes beginning Thursday at 7pm.
“Presales have broken all the records,” Andel said. “We plan to show, show after show after show, as many as we need to put in, to accommodate all the guests.”
Robert Stahowiak bought 10 tickets to the 1:10 a.m. showing on Friday. He says he and his buddies will be dressed as their favorite characters.
“I just may surprise everybody,” Stahowiak said. “I may come as Jar Jar Binks or a Wookiee!”
Some theatres have costume restrictions. AMC Theatres says no masks or face paint, but you can bring your lightsaber, as long as you turn it off during the movie.
Many theaters are offering reserved seats, so you don’t have to get there early to claim a good spot.
“So people can just go online, click and pick their seat, and they can walk in five minutes before the movie starts and their seat is going to be waiting for them,” Andel said.
Timothy Smith is eager to see where the plot takes us this time.
“In some ways, people got to like the bad guys better,” he said. “I think a lot of fans like the ‘dark side’ part of it more than the rebel side.”
At Paragon in Burnsville, they’re serving a tequila drink called The Yoda and bringing a karate teacher to do light saber demonstrations Saturday and Sunday.
Many theaters have added extra staff and extended their hours just to accomodate Star Wars during its run.