In the summer of 2009 my girl and I went on vacation to the USA (once again). Among the places and locations we visited were San Diego, Carefree, Grand Canyon NP, Bryce Canyon NP, Zion NP, Death Valley NP, Monument Valley NP, Yosemite NP, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Alcatraz, Monterey, Pismo Beach, Kanab, Palm Springs, Mammoth Lakes, Modesto and Los Angeles.
Some of these places have a special connection with Lucasfilm and the Indiana Jones and Star Wars movies. The following photos are from all the Lucasfilm-related things we encountered during our journey across what some people would call 'the Wild West' but I'd rather call it: 'Lucasfilm country'.
Palm Springs: Home of Darth Vader
First thing I encountered was Darth Vader! Well, the star that was given to his voice that is.
James Earl Jones has his own star on the streets of Palm Spings.
Monument Valley: the Last Crusade
Monument Valley Rocks! (pun intended). Legendary because famous movies were shot there (John Ford shot a lot there, and Back to the Future III was filmed here) and a scene from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade was shot here.
Las Vegas: First signs of Indy/Solo & (non-Sabacc) gambling
On the streets of Las Vegas Harrison Ford left his handprints. This wasn't the last I'd see of him this trip.
Also in Las Vegas were these Star Wars gambling machines. I decided to give it a go...but I lost (not the Millennium Falcon like Billy Dee Williams)
Death Valley: America's Tatooine
This was a big one: in Death Valley many scenes for Star Wars IV: A New Hope were filmed. R2-D2 rolled here, a Jawa Sandcrawler drove here, a Bantha walked here, a Landspeeder flew here and Mos Eisley's overview is also here.
Jabba's Palace road from Star Wars VI: Return of the Jedi is also in Death Valley.
My attempt to do a Luke Skywalker pose. (without the twin suns that is).
Yosemite: Indy again
The national Park Yosemite was used for some shots in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
Modesto: Birthplace of The Maker
The holy place. Modesto. Birthplace of George Lucas.
We arrived in the late afternoon and I immediately wanted to go to a certain plaza...just 1 mile from the hotel.
Modesto has honored George Lucas with George Lucas Plaza. A spot that's named after him and has a large bronze statue that refers to his movie American Graffiti. He grew up here and the streets of Modesto inspired him for this movie. I can surely say that when I walked these streets it really felt like the movie. A great moment for sure.
San Francisco: in the footsteps of Indy and Marion
Above: Harrison Ford and Karen Allen in their final scene in Raiders of the Lost Ark.
Below: Me and my girl on the same stairs.
This scene and photo was shot in the City Hall of San Francisco.
In San Francisco's Presidio George Lucas' studios are located. Here's a shot of them.
...and there also was this bus driving through the city...
Los Angeles: Prints, Stars, Rides and Sam Jackson
Above: August 3, 1977. The footprints of R2-D2, C-3PO (and Darth Vader) are taken at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood.
Below: September 2009, me at the exact same spot.
Harrison Ford's prints....
...and the prints of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg.
Harrison Ford's star on the Walk of Fame.
Steven Spielbergs Star on the Walk of Fame.
It's Mace Windu! Yes, that's Samuel L. Jackson and me in Hollywood.....well, his wax statue in front of Madame Tussauds.
Yay! It's Star Tours in Disneyland! And you know what that means: my obligatory photo of good pal C-3PO and me.
Also in Disneyland: Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye. Wow. Unlike the ride in Disneyland Paris this isn't a rollercoaster but a really REALLY good ride. Truly one of the best rides anywhere.
Well, that's the end of the Lucasfilm Road Trip! We saw a LOT more during our trip (and made 3500+ photo's). The photo's above are (as said before) a selection of just the Lucasfilm related things.
Without a doubt it was a holiday that will be long remembered.
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