Yesterday I had the pleasure of taking a shufti around the Star Wars exhibition at County Hall, Westminster. I went undercover (paying customer-stylee, not an official SFX visit) and was pleasantly surprised by the number of cool props and figures on display.
My only minor gripe is that much of it seems to come from the prequel trilogy and slightly less from our beloved originals, but that's a minor point since there is so much good stuff there - including Han Solo in carbonite, mounted on a wall (picture below), and a life-size Naboo N-1 Starfighter, landed in the middle of County Hall's extraordinary chambers.
Completely coincidentally, I discovered on my return that the exhibit has been named "Best UK Exhibition For Families" by the Daily Telegraph, and has had its run in London extended until 12 January 2008.
Exhibition Coordinator Jonathan Sands announced today: “The Exhibition is proving so popular that we want families [and] film fans... to enjoy the exhibition, so extending the run was the best way to ensure everyone gets to re-live the magic of Star Wars".
With more than 240 original props, costumes, vehicles, artwork and models it's a pretty comprehensive exhibition of Star Wars memorabilia. A ticket includes a 15-minute session in the Jedi Training School (you know, for kids); a short movie about special effects; duels in the Green Screen Room (expect up to an hour's queue to get in); and Star Wars characters in costume walking around for photo opportunities (Darth Vader, the Emperor, Jedi Knights and Stormtroopers all milling about). For an additional fiver you can have a presentation photo of yourself with R2-D2 and C-3PO on a little mock-up of the Tantive IV set.
Our other top tip: spend over eight quid on food at the County Hall terrace café at the moment and you get a free ticket for the London Aquarium as well.
Star Wars - The Exhibition is open seven days a week from 10am-6pm (nearest Tubes are Westminster or Waterloo). Official site here .