TIE Fighters Take Center Stage in Ambitious “Star Wars” Animated Fan Film


Star Wars never really left our collective consciousness, but with Disney’s long-anticipated feature film plans finally coming to fruition, the Saga is about to come back in a big way. One consequence of the renewed interest in the franchise is that many fans will likely seek to develop their own Star Wars fan films. Animator Paul Johnson recently finished his, and it is one of the best I’ve seen in years. Watch Star Wars: TIE Fighter after the jump.

Johnson spent “over 4 years’ worth of weekends” drawing and animating the film, which chronicles an epic space battle between TIE Fighters and X-wing starfighters in a style that pays homage to popular anime cartoons of the 1980s. The result is a thrilling animated short presented from a unique perspective Star Wars fans are normally not privy to: the Empire’s fighter pilots. Watch it below:

What if there was an Empire-focused short Star Wars animation, drawn with the crazy detail and shading of classic 80s anime that’s all but vanished from Japan nowadays?
Well, I tried my best. Apologies in advance for not living up to Venus Wars standards. Drawn and animated by yours truly over 4 years’ worth of weekends, with music by the living guitar solo Zak Rahman and sound design by up and coming audio technician Joseph Leyva. Fans of Lucasarts’ seminal 1994 TIE Fighter game may notice a few familiar sights and sounds. That “incoming missile” noise gives me horrible flashbacks to this day…

What makes Johnson’s commitment to the project even more impressive and commendable is that it stands as a true labor of love on his part. He has no designs on leveraging the film’s buzz into a full length feature, or using it as stepping stone to fundraise another endeavor. He just loves Star Wars and hopes the film brings enjoyment to fellow fans:

Don’t support me on Patreon, because I don’t have one! And don’t donate to my Kickstarter, because I don’t have one of those either. Instead, if you enjoyed this, give someone at your workplace, uni, school or whatever a random bar of chocolate or can or Coke or something. Seriously, it’ll probably make their day. That would totally make my day.

What do you think of Star Wars: TIE Fighter? Would you watch an anime-style Star Wars television show or movie? Let us know in the comments below.

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