Although Everyone normally thinks of George Lucas when they think of Star Wars it was in fact Ralph McQuarrie who was responsible for bringing to life not only Darth Vader and Chewbacca but also R2-D2 and C3-P0. He also worked with Lucas in creating the spacecraft featured in Close Encounters of the Third Kind.
He hadn’t always worked in the movie industry and started off his career working for Boeing as a technical designer for the aviation giant. After working for CBS on animations for their coverage of the Apollo space missions Lucas hired him to work on Star Wars and he is described as having a unique place in defining the look of the series of films. As well as designing so many of the main characters McQuarrie also designed the look of other features of the movie as you can see from his original illustration of the planet Tatooine.
He also worked on other classic films such as E.T. as well as helping design the original Battlestar Galactica tv series and helped design the look of Nightbreed for Clive Barker.
On hearing the news of McQuarrie’s death George Lucas said: “His genial contribution, in the form of unequalled production paintings, propelled and inspired all of the cast and crew of the original Star Wars trilogy. When words could not convey my ideas, I could always point to one of Ralph’s fabulous illustrations and say, ‘do it like this’.”
McQuarrie did actually get to appear in one of the Star Wars films when he had an uncredited role as General Pharl McQuarrie in The Empire Strikes Back.
Girls Aloud Tour 2013 – Nadine Coyle has confirmed the news that Girls Aloud will be reforming for a tour and some new tracks next year.
She said that there was unlikely to be a new album from the girls but they would producing some singles.
“It feels like the right time to regroup,” she said at the Elton John AIDS Foundation Oscar Viewing Party. “I know everyone’s been speculating about what we will do.”
“It will be arena dates at the start of next year and we will have new music to go with it. One or two singles I would think. It depends on how well it goes with the tour announcement.”
“If we’re all in the same head space as a band then who knows what could happen?”
It confirms what has been hinted at by several of the girls before including the chat that Kimberly Walsh had with Alan Titchmarsh. She is currently keeping herself very busy with her part as Princess Fiona in the West End version of Shrek.
Of all the girls it is of course Cheryl Cole who gets the most attention. The media have famously tried to say that it is Nadine and Cheryl not getting on together that has stopped the group reforming but Nadine said at the Oscar party that she had no problem working with Cheryl but they just had very different musical styles.
Nadine has been the one member of the group that has been less in the public eye as she has lived in the US for the last 6 years. Amongst many ventures she started a chain of bars bearing her name which are run by various members of her family. The Nadine’s Irish Mist bar at Sunset Beach, Orange County, California is run by her parents Niall and Lillian.
This year will see the 10th anniversary of Girls Aloud who were formed in 2002 for tv talent show Popstars: The Rivals. The group comprises Nadine Coyle, Cheryl Cole, Sarah Harding, Kimberley Walsh and Nicola Roberts. The girls have not worked together since 2009 when they all moved off in different directions to focus on their solo careers.