|20 x 30|
It has been 41 years since Greg and Tim painted the Style B poster for Star Wars: A New Hope. It is a well-known fact that the original movie poster was designed by artist, Tom Jung, but the producers later recruited the Brothers Hildebrandt because they believed Jung’s image was “too dark.” Greg and Tim were told to make the painting more “comic book-like,” so the Brothers turned around a new version of the original composition in just 36 hours. This piece was initially used for American merchandising, but the main purpose was for the UK release of the Star Wars film later that year. What amazes Greg is that the Hildebrandt Star Wars poster was only on display in the UK for 2 months before it was replaced with the Style C poster by Tom Chantrell, yet it is one of the most iconic Star Wars images to this day.
Just as Star Wars influenced its many fans, as he approaches 80, Greg has been revisiting classics that influenced him for his “What If” series. Now, he is revisiting yet another classic–Star Wars. Greg recently decided to present himself with a new challenge regarding this iconic imagery–could he recreate this image by himself in the same amount of time, 36 hours? After all, he’s had four decades of painting experience since he and Tim took the Star Wars job. What could be possible? Because he never paints exactly the same thing twice, Greg made a few changes to his approach. First, the painting is being done on a “black board,” a black piece of illustration board that allows him to use the back of the board as his darkest value. This means that when an area of the painting is very dark or would be black, he does not mix any paint, he just relies on the board to show through. Second, the black board is slightly smaller than the original he and Tim painted. This is mostly because of the size that he buys the boards at: 20”x30.” The one thing Greg didn’t change? One of the figures is missing a finger! But we won’t tell which one.
Though many fans will want to own this painting, they will only have one chance to view it live. The recreation will be on display all four days of New York Comic Con at the Spiderweb Art Gallery Booth #1764 before it is sent to the “Gotta Have Rock and Roll” auction this November. This painting is a big deal for Greg, who has done numerous projects since Star Wars. He says, “If I’m going to revisit the Star Wars image after all these years, I have to know if I can do without my brother.”
This is the only time Greg has painted this Star Wars image since he first created it with his brother, Tim in 1977. Although he has been asked to recreate this painting numerous times in the the years since then, only this painting has been created. A painting like this will never be seen again in this galaxy!