Throughout its history, piracy in Star Wars has made the universe victim of great losses. And no, we don’t mean space piracy. We mean streaming movies and downloading torrents kind of pirates. As a matter of fact, each movie of the first two trilogies has been downloaded as much as 3000 times a day since their release. That is at least 54% more than the average movie. And that is just on torrents. And if you focus just on streaming, the least viewed movie from the first trilogy has been streamed over 1 million times.
Star Wars has defined generation after generation to the point that it is almost impossible for someone to not know the name Darth Vader or light sabers. Think about it, how many times did you wonder what color your light saber would be?
Besides the films, we have the extended universe that began with the publishing of Splinter of the Mind’s Eye, a ghost-written novel that expanded on the happenings between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back. George Lucas also expanded the Star Wars Universe with its first TV specials. Animated series and television shows quickly became popular ways to expand the universe for all of the Star Wars fans.
In 2012, when The Walt Disney Company bought the franchise from Lucas Films Ltd, the fans saw the rebirth of the film saga with the announcement of a sequel trilogy that would follow the events of the first trilogy and would more closely resemble the first three movies than the cinematography of the prequel trilogy. Later into the purchase, fans also found out about a series of anthology films that would expand on the main characters and the stories that the world had grown to know and love.
But the transfer from Lucas to Disney did not protect the films for the piracy in Star Wars. As a matter of fact, two weeks before its release on BluRay, The Force Awakens had been downloaded over 250 thousand times on torrent and viewed over 3.3 million times on streaming sites.
Obviously, the popularity of the saga transcends generations. Our grandparents saw the film and were awed by the special effects, our parents were just as surprised when they found out that Darth Vader was the father, our big brothers and sisters rooted for little Anakin despite knowing how it all would end and now we flood the Internet with fan theories about who Rey is and what will happen.
For this reason, Star Wars toys were demanded by children of all ages and adults who pursued collectibles. But, what do you do when you buy a toy at full price and then find out that you have just purchased Toby-One Kenobi rather than our most beloved Obi-Wan Kenobi? This was the case for many toy stores in 2015 that were sent bogus toys by counterfeit producers.
As a matter of fact, the fake Star Wars products is such a big problem that eBay has specific pages where the users discuss and explain how to know if a product they are buying is fake or not. Reddit has a similar page too. These are intended to protect fans from the piracy in Star Wars.
As long as great sagas like Star Wars exist, people will try to take advantage of the buyers at the original creator’s expense. For two reasons it is very important to make sure that what you buy and consume is legal.
The first one is getting your money’s worth. While stand-alone Lego Star Wars figures can cost around 18 or 20 euros, there are sets than cost as little as 70 euros and as much as 500 euros or more. It’s important to know if what you are buying is legal because, do you really want to pay 60 euros for a Star Wars Lego set than turns out to be a knock off?
The second one is about the movies and the importance of consuming them legally because it gives the company your support. Think of the purchase of a move ticket or a BluRay as casting a vote for this film. You are telling the producers that you like this movie and wish to see it. This lets them know that you want them to produce more films like this one. So, what about it?
Does Star Wars deserve your vote?
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