Monday, September 30, 2019

40 years of Stormtrooper costumes from Star Wars on display at D23 Expo 2019...

At this year's Disney D23 Expo in Anaheim, California on August 23, 2019, Lucasfilm brought a squadron of Stormtroopers spanning 40 years of sci-fi adventures in a Star Wars galaxy far, far away.

Stormtrooper uniforms old and new from Star Wars
In addition to these Stormtrooper armours which spanned from A New Hope to the forthcoming The Rise of Skywalker, the expo also had costumes from The Mandalorian on display, the first ever live-action Star Wars television series debuting soon on the Disney+ streaming platform.

Sith Trooper costume
from Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
Star Wars Rise of Skywalker Sith Trooper costume
Star Wars Rise of Skywalker Sith Trooper suit
Star Wars Rise of Skywalker Sith Trooper costume
Star Wars Rise Skywalker Sith Trooper costume helmet
Sith Trooper costume Star Wars Rise of Skywalker
Star Wars Rise of Skywalker Sith Trooper armour
I thought I'd start by sharing the striking and ominously-titled 'Sith Trooper' costume from the upcoming The Rise of Skywalker movie. It's amazing what a colour can do to make a suit of armour more menacing (mush like the Praetorian Guards of 'Supreme Leader Snoke'), especially as these First Order troopers are said to harness the power of a dark and ancient legacy.

Michael Kaplan was Costume Designer on this latest iteration of red Stormtrooper.

First Order Jet Trooper costume
from Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
Star Wars Rise of Skywalker First Order Jet Trooper costume
Star Wars Rise of Skywalker First Order Jet Trooper helmet
Star Wars rise of Skywalker First Order Jet Trooper armour
Star Wars Rise of Skywalker Jet Trooper costume
First Order Jet Trooper Star Wars Rise of Skywalker
Another new First Order armour making its debut in the ninth Star Wars movie in there Skywalker saga is this 'Jet Trooper' costume. Designed by Michael Kaplan, these specialised Stormtroopers can soar into battle with the use of rocket packs.

Captain Phasma costume worn by Gwendoline Christie
in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi
Gwendoline Christie Star Wars Captain Phasma costume
Star Wars Captain Phasma armour
'Captain Phasma's' armour is another great example of how a different chrome finish can give a Stormtrooper a radically different look, whilst still resembling the iconic foot-soldiers of the Empire.

Looking more like a Cylon from Battlestar Galactica, Michael Kaplan designed Gwendoline Christie's female Captain costume (which hasn't been made to look any more feminine) with her distinctive shiny salvaged chromium armour and cape.

Make sure you also take a closer look at Captain Phasma's costume when it was previously on display.

First Order Stormtrooper costume from Star Wars
Star Wars First Order Stormtrooper costume
The First Order Stormtrooper costume with its modified helmet design first made its debut in The Force Awakens and was designed by Michael Kaplan and you can take a closer look at this and other Stormtrooper armours from the new films.

First Order TIE Fighter pilot costume from Star Wars
Star Wars First Order TIE Fighter pilot costume
Star Wars First Order TIE Fighter pilot costume
Star Wars First Order TIE Fighter pilot
Star Wars First Order TIE Fighter pilot costume
Star Wars First Order TIE Fighter pilot
Star Wars First Order TIE Fighter pilot costume
Star Wars First Order TIE Fighter pilot costume
The First Order TIE Fighter pilot costume featuring in The Force Awakens onwards is also designed by Michael Kaplan.

Scout Trooper costume from Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
Star Wars Return of the Jedi Scout Trooper costume
Star Wars Return of the Jedi Scout Trooper armor
Star Wars Return of Jedi Scout Trooper costume
Star Wars Return Jedi Scout Trooper costume
Star Wars Return Jedi Scout Trooper helmet
Star Wars Return of the Jedi Scout Trooper costume
Scout Trooper costume Star Wars Return Jedi
The Empire's 'Scout Trooper' costume from Return of the Jedi was always one of my favourites, especially as they got to ride cool speeder bikes. Their lighter armoured look allowed the soldiers to move quicker and adapt to a range of environments compared to other classic Imperial Stormtroopers. This Star Wars costume was designed by Aggie Guerard Rodgers and Nilo Rodis-Jamero.

Imperial TIE Fighter pilot costume from Star Wars
Imperial TIE Fighter pilot costume Star Wars
Imperial TIE Fighter pilot costume Star Wars
Imperial TIE Fighter pilot costume helmet Star Wars
Star Wars Imperial TIE Fighter pilot costume
Star Wars Imperial TIE Fighter pilot
I always found the Imperial TIE Fighter pilot costumes really menacing. Maybe it was the close-up shots of their black helmets with the frowns and all the tubes that made them look so sinister. John Mollo was Costume Designer on the iconic pilot costume, although no matter how cool they looked it didn't stop them from being shot out of the sky with seeming ease.

Imperial Stormtrooper costume from Star Wars
Imperial Stormtrooper costume Star Wars
Star Wars Imperial Stormtrooper costume
You really can't beat the iconic look of the Imperial Stormtrooper costume designed by John Mollo and first appearing in 1977's A New Hope.

Shoretrooper costume from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Rogue One Star Wars Shoretrooper costume
Rogue One Star Wars Shoretrooper costume
Rogue One Star Wars Shoretrooper helmet
Shoretrooper costume Rogue One
Shoretrooper costume Rogue One Star Wars
Shoretrooper costume Rogue One
In the prequel to A New Hope, we learned how the rebels had retrieved the Death Star plans courtesy of a plucky band in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

This 'Shoretrooper' costume designed by Glyn Dillon and David Crossman were worn by special troops who patrolled the beaches and bunkers of the top secret Imperial military facility on Scarif.

Imperial Death Trooper costume
from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Imperial Death Trooper costume Rogue One Star Wars
Death Trooper costume Rogue One Star Wars
Rogue One Imperial Death Trooper costume
Rogue One Star Wars Death Trooper costume
Rogue One Star Wars Death Trooper costume
Rogue One also introduced us to 'Imperial Death Trooper' costumes, also designed by Glyn Dillon and David Crossman. These dark and deadly elite soldiers of Imperial Intelligence served as bodyguards and enforcers for 'Director Krennic' of the Empire's Advanced Weapons Research division.

If you like this retrospective and glimpse at the future of Stormtroopers, make sure you check out all these other costumes and props from the Star Wars universe on display.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker movie poster
Star Wars Rise of Skywalker movie poster
Go further behind-the-scenes with these books: The Art of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
Star Wars Costumes

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