Harrison Ford’s original “Star Wars” script from 1976 is to be auctioned after he left it in the London flat he lived in whilst making the iconic movie. The revised fourth draft of the franchise’s first installment bears its original title “The Adventures of Luke Star Killer” now better known as “Episode IV: A New Hope”.
The never-seen-before piece of Jedi history was used by the Hollywood actor, who portrayed the iconic Han Solo for the first time. It was discovered in a London flat which Ford had rented in 1976 so he could easily travel to Elstree Studios in Hertfordshire, where the series was being filmed.
Ford’s portrayal of Han Solo skyrocketed his acting career, and led to him reprising the role in four more films over the next four decades.
The title page reads ‘The Adventures of Luke Star Killer as taken from the Journal of the Whills by George Lucas (Saga I) Star Wars’.
The script is unbound and incomplete, with an array of different coloured pages. In all, the script had five revised drafts, of which this is the fourth, and provides an interesting insight into the scenes and characters which were cut from the film during the final edit.
The early versions of some of the film’s most iconic moments are also featured, including Han Solo’s first appearance on page 56, and the famous ‘Chasm Scene’ on page 88.
Excalibur Actions, who are selling the script, estimate that it could go for between £8,000 and £12,000.
Ford’s old possessions were offered up for auction by the people who rented him his London flat back in 1976.
The rising star had been given a budget by filmmakers to choose a property near Elstree Studios and ultimately opted for a place in Notting Hill after coming across an advert in The Sunday Times.
The owners, a married couple, lived on the bottom floors of the house in Elgin Crescent while Ford occupied the top two floors. Oblivious to the celebrity world, the couple had no idea who Ford was – initially only knowing him as an “excellent” and “very tidy” tenant.
During his stay, there were many soon-to-be famous visitors – including Carrie Fisher, who played Princess Leia, and Mark Hamill, who played Luke Skywalker. Still, the owners had no idea who these famous faces were, and only referred to Hamill as ‘the boy’, as that was what Ford called him.
Over time the couple struck up a genuine friendship with Ford.
They spent time in the garden having drinks while he relaxed after filming, and Ford even attended their son’s first birthday party. On one occasion, Ford gave them money to purchase new plants for their garden, since they all spent so much time there.
“Summer 1976 was a great time,” they said. “Harrison was an ideal tenant. It really was a fun time.” When the couple first found the script, they held onto it for posterity.
But now, they have decided that it should be offered to the public – with the item due to go on sale at Excalibur Auctions’ Collectors’ Cavern Auction on 17 February. Other items which Ford left in the flat will also be available to purchase, including a pair of shooting schedules, a call sheet, and a collection of notes.
The first shooting schedule is dated 8 March 1976. One of the pages is annotated with circles and writing on the back reads ‘1st Tony Wayne 2nd Gerry and 3rd Terry’, who all worked as Assistant Directors on the first Star Wars film.
The second shooting schedule is dated 23 April 1976 and is annotated on two pages: ‘Han intro in cantina’, scene 50, and ‘Group arrived at grid, Montross leaving’, scene 58.
The call sheet is dated 28 April 1976, for the filming of ‘The Death Star Hallway to Core Shaft’, featuring Hamill and Fisher. On the reverse, there is a handwritten note which says: ‘Browns Hotel, Dover St. Sunday 8th, Robert Watts, Roast Beef’.
This appears to refer to a meeting between Ford and the film producer Robert Watts, who worked with Ford on the Star Wars and Indiana Jones film series. The assorted notes include timings for parties and telephone numbers, including one which says: ‘For the good time – Her’.
These will be sold as a group lot, for an estimated price of between £800 and £1,200.
The final item up for sale is a typed letter from Ford’s agent, Patricia McQueeney, which discusses his contracts and future film prospects.
In the letter, McQueeney playfully scolds Ford for not calling his first wife Mary Marquadt, whom the actor was married to between 1964 and 1979. Auctioneers estimate that this could fetch between £60 and £80.
Commenting on the fresh insight into one of the key figures in the Star Wars franchise, Excalibur Auctions’ auctioneer “Although other copies of this script have come to market previously, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be able to offer a version with such wonderful provenance and attribution to Harrison Ford,” said Jonathan Torode.
“The touching backstory to these items adds even more appeal for avid Star Wars fans and we anticipate huge interest from around the globe.” The catalog for the sale will be published online from 5 February on Excalibur Auctions’ website.
Produced in association with SWNS Talker
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