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Darth Vader's suit

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Darth Vader’s suit changed throughout the OT. In ANH it looked kind of clumsy and plastic like seen here: http://www.jedidefender.com/collect92/vader anh.jpg

In Empire they definitely stepped it up in looks. Gave his should plate a shinier and more polished look as well as adding illuminating buttons to his chest plate and a glossier looking helmet: http://i826.photobucket.com/albums/zz190/ThePropDen/e34d01ea.jpg

In Jedi though, I think is when Darth Vader was taken to the next level. The changes to his helmet & suit were subtle, but there is something about his look, it transcends time: http://images4.fanpop.com/image/photos/18300000/Star-Wars-Episode-VI-Return-Of-The-Jedi-Darth-Vader-darth-vader-18356369-1050-656.jpg

I have a few questions:

Does anybody know the technical differences between Darth Vader’s suit in ANH, ESB, & ROTJ?
Why did they decided to make a new suit for Empire & Jedi. Wouldn’t the ones made for ANH due fine?
Was it because they had multiple actors playing Darht Vader in ROTJ? (Sebastian Shaw is one I know of but there may have been others)

That still doesn’t explain though why they changed Darht Vader’s suit in ESB because as far as I know David Prowse played the character the whole time.

Dath Vader’s helmet was in reality made out of plastic of course, but I assume in the movies it was supposed to be interpreted as being made out of metal.

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I love rougher look of Vader in SW. Though it makes sense practically that he may need to replace components or the whole apparatus every so often. He did wear it every day.

TV’s Frink said:

I would put this in my sig if I weren’t so lazy.

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I know it’s just a movie, but is it believable to think that Anakin could survive those burns even with the suit?

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Interesting. It would make sense that they would make new ones for each film considering how many hours they get worn. I had never noticed the differences. What that link doesn’t mention is that the OT mask was asymmetrical. They scanned half of it, mirrored it, and printed an exact mirror copy to create the ROTS mask. And it is supposed to be new and pristine. I had always assumed that no all Vader’s opponents had gone down without a fight and in the finale of Rebels (and I’m assuming anyone who wants to watch it has seen it already) Ahsoka got in a good blow that damaged the right side of the mask. I’m assuming that is to partly explain the asymmetrical nature of the mask.

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I think asymmetry of the mask had to do more with limitations in technology back then making the mask. They didn’t have a computer to do a 3D scan of one side to be mirrored on the other. It had to be done by hand with tools & eyeballing.

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yotsuya said:

Interesting. It would make sense that they would make new ones for each film considering how many hours they get worn. I had never noticed the differences. What that link doesn’t mention is that the OT mask was asymmetrical. They scanned half of it, mirrored it, and printed an exact mirror copy to create the ROTS mask. And it is supposed to be new and pristine. I had always assumed that no all Vader’s opponents had gone down without a fight and in the finale of Rebels (and I’m assuming anyone who wants to watch it has seen it already) Ahsoka got in a good blow that damaged the right side of the mask. I’m assuming that is to partly explain the asymmetrical nature of the mask.

I believe it’s mentioned elsewhere on the site.

It’s a darn good thing Rebels came along to get Episode III off the hook for making the Vader mask too perfect compared to the original. 😉

It’s more likely Vader has more than one suit, and many spare parts.

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I assume they changed the suit because pieces would be lost or damaged between films, or they wanted to improve on things like visibility, mobility, and looks to enhance the action from the suit, the actor’s experience in the suit, and the character itself.

Keep Circulating the Tapes.

END OF LINE

(It hasn’t happened yet)

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Darth Vader1 said:

I know it’s just a movie, but is it believable to think that Anakin could survive those burns even with the suit?

You’re seriously asking this question in a movie universe with faster than light space travel, prosthetic limbs that are indistinguishable from real limbs, laser blasters and swords, and literal magic?

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CHEWBAKAspelledwrong said:

I love rougher look of Vader in SW.

I have to agree. I also like how his robes are going over the armor instead of under it (like in Empire and Jedi).

Army of Darkness: The Medieval Deadit | The Terminator - Color Regrade | The Wrong Trousers - Audio Preservation
SONIC RACES THROUGH THE GREEN FIELDS.
THE SUN RACES THROUGH A BLUE SKY FILLED WITH WHITE CLOUDS.
THE WAYS OF HIS HEART ARE MUCH LIKE THE SUN. SONIC RUNS AND RESTS; THE SUN RISES AND SETS.
DON’T GIVE UP ON THE SUN. DON’T MAKE THE SUN LAUGH AT YOU.

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I don’t even think Darth Vader’s original voice in ANH was meant to be synthesized. It was literally meant to be the voice of Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker. I also don’t think it was originally meant to be a life supporting device. It was meant for space travel and to look menacing. Darth Vader just wore it all the time to look intimidating to imperial troops & officers.

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^ Take the words “Anakin Skywalker” out of that post and I would agree with you.

“That Darth Vader, man. Sure does love eating Jedi.”

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Darth Vader1 said:

I know it’s just a movie, but is it believable to think that Anakin could survive those burns even with the suit?

Well if we’re talking in the real world:

The burns, yes. Assuming there is proper medical attention it is possible and has happened to survive third degree burns on your entire body.

But the burns aren’t really what he’d have to worry about. He’d be dead (along with Obi wan mind you) long before that would even matter from breathing in the excrutiatingly hot, ashy, poisonous air around the lava.

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IsanRido said:

I probably must be one of the only people who prefers ANH’ Vader, both the suit and acting by Prowse/Jones.

“You are part of a rebel alliance and a traitor! Take her away!” Love those hand gestures.

Agreed.

Army of Darkness: The Medieval Deadit | The Terminator - Color Regrade | The Wrong Trousers - Audio Preservation
SONIC RACES THROUGH THE GREEN FIELDS.
THE SUN RACES THROUGH A BLUE SKY FILLED WITH WHITE CLOUDS.
THE WAYS OF HIS HEART ARE MUCH LIKE THE SUN. SONIC RUNS AND RESTS; THE SUN RISES AND SETS.
DON’T GIVE UP ON THE SUN. DON’T MAKE THE SUN LAUGH AT YOU.

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I assume the breathing was because Anakin’s lung’s got burned beyond repair, but really, I thought the whole fight on the lava planet was absurd. I liked the idea that Anakin’s injuries were the cause of radiation poisoning. I don’t know if you can be protected from death of radiation poisoning though. It depends on exposure level and time.

The whole fight between Anakin & Obi Wan was nonsense. I thought that the fight might have occurred on Dagobah as that would help explain the cave scene in Empire. I thought Anakin’s injuries were more gradual and were caused by various fights with Jedi over time. The fight with Obi Wan was the most severe. But I don’t think we should have seen Anakin get surgery & put in the suit. It should have been left to assume he dies in episode II or III with maybe just a hint that he is still alive. That way it is still a surprise when we find out you know what in Empire.

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Density said:

Darth Vader1 said:

I know it’s just a movie, but is it believable to think that Anakin could survive those burns even with the suit?

You’re seriously asking this question in a movie universe with faster than light space travel, prosthetic limbs that are indistinguishable from real limbs, laser blasters and swords, and literal midi-chlorians?

FTFY

“Okay, I’m goin’, takin’ off. See ya… bye….” — Chip Douglas

“This concludes our broadcast day. Click.” — Chip Douglas

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IsanRido said:

I probably must be one of the only people who prefers ANH’ Vader, both the suit and acting by Prowse/Jones.

“You are part of a rebel alliance and a traitor! Take her away!” Love those hand gestures.

While I prefer the TESB suit for the most part, I certainly like the gloves Vader wore in SW over the later pairs. They looked swankier.

“Okay, I’m goin’, takin’ off. See ya… bye….” — Chip Douglas

“This concludes our broadcast day. Click.” — Chip Douglas

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DuracellEnergizer said:

Density said:

Darth Vader1 said:

I know it’s just a movie, but is it believable to think that Anakin could survive those burns even with the suit?

You’re seriously asking this question in a movie universe with faster than light space travel, prosthetic limbs that are indistinguishable from real limbs, laser blasters and swords, and literal midi-chlorians?

FTFY

I’ve found George Lucas’s account, turns out it’s not Negative1 after all

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I thought the original suit looked very plausible, like something someone could have changed but hadn’t for years. The second suit was the most stylish version. It looks great in silhouette because of the added illumination. The third one looked off. It seemed to fit less well than the original one and the mask was too uniformly black gloss. There seemed to be a more metallic look to the first two helmets but the third one looked more like plastic covered in thick gloss paint. The worst one was the ROTS mask. Too symmetrical too uniformly surfaced. I would have used an earlier Macquarrie design to underline how the suit will evolve over time yet to pass. I like the melted on in TFA The jagged teeth are a particularly pleasing feature.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6Dp2OfIT_M

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Agreed, it’s like, what, he’s been wearing the same designed suit for 20+ years? How many things and fashion trends from 20+ years ago are still relevant today? Plus, Darth Vader was originally meant to be older in ROTJ meaning even more time was originally suppose to pass between episode III & IV making his suit even more dated.

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I don’t worry about this kind of stuff because movie.

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I never really noticed much difference in the costumes between the movies. The armor pieces in ANH look a little more metallic where in the later films they are just black.

When you investigate where the name came from, it is almost impossible to ignore Dark Father and the implication that he was someone’s father from the very beginning. Whose may have changed from draft to draft, but I think by the time it got to the production phase that he was Luke’s father from the outset. Two clues give this away to me. First, the lightsabers. The Anakin and Vader sabers are nearly identical. This may be a coincidence because of the source of the parts, but Kenobi’s saber is vastly different. Second, Alec Guinness delivers a masterful bit of acting just before he launches into the explanation of Luke’s father. Either that is the most awesome coincidence or George told him Ben was lying to Luke. It is just a quick change of expression, but it reads to me like Ben knew what he was about to tell Luke was a deliberately slanted point of view.

Lucas and the Star Wars production were famous about not revealing secrets so Lucas could have had the existing story (of 4, 5, 6) planned out from the outset with Luke and Leia being siblings and Vader/Anakin as their father. He just didn’t tell anyone who didn’t need to know and even then, not before they needed to know it. Like Prowse’s line on set “No, Luke, Obi-wan killed your father.” Prowse didn’t know. Only Mark Hammil, Lucas, and Kershner knew on the day of shooting and they only told Mark shortly before shooting. Leia being Luke’s sister would be another such item that Lucas would not tell anyone the real story until it was time.

Also, the saber duel on the lava planet was planned from the beginning. I knew about it very early on. Not sure when it was mentioned or how. Though it was originally just a volcano.

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Prowse did know, (or guessed) and was quoted in a small local newspaper article during a publicity event in 1978. That a larger publication didn’t pick up on it is a mystery.
http://io9.gizmodo.com/5684916/in-1978-darth-vaders-actor-spoiled-the-empire-strikes-backs-ending-to-a-local-newspaper/

The version of Vader’s injuries that made the rounds when I was a kid was that Vader fell into a volcanic vent during a duel with Obi Wan. I think that comes from a tidbit Lucas dropped in an early print interview.

Pretty impressive that it went viral in the analog pre-internet era. Usually, it was just lurid urban myths like the one about the kid from the Life Cereal commercial exploding from mixing Pop Rocks and soda pop. 😉

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