It’s no surprise that, after nearly 40 years of being a pop culture phenomenon, “Star Wars” has helped inspire so many to get into the entertainment business.
It’s also no wonder so many entertainers were salivating at the chance to be part of the dusted-off, new “Star Wars” universe. Many of them have been vocal since Disney bought Lucasfilm in 2012 and announced a new slate of films.
Here are 15 of the biggest “Star Wars” fans among the famous.
Kevin Smith: In Smith’s 1994 breakout cult classic “Clerks,” one scene involves his two main characters discussing whether “The Empire Strikes Back” and “Return of the Jedi” are better, and the ethical implications of destroying a half-completed Death Star with so many innocent workers aboard. The movies also were referenced in “Mallrats.” And, of course, the title and logo of Smith’s film “Jay and Silent Bob Strikes Back” borrows heavily from the first “Star Wars” sequel.
Seth Green: The successful actor and “Star Wars” lover has devoted a large part of his career to making comedic “Star Wars” material, especially for the TV series “Robot Chicken.” He also co-created the animated comedy series “Star Wars Detours,” with his “Robot Chicken” co-creator Matthew Senreich, for Lucasfilm; it was shelved when plans for the new trilogy were announced.
Adrianne Curry: The former “America’s Next Top Model” winner and reality show star, who was married to “The Brady Bunch’s” Christopher Knight for six years, is an admitted “Star Wars” nut. She proves that with repeated appearances at conventions and Comic-Con, where she has dressed up in a “Slave Leia” costume. She threw a “Star Wars”-themed pool party for her 30th birthday.
Tina Fey: The “30 Rock” co-creator, like her character on the show, is a self-described “Star Wars” nerd. Fey frequently inserted “Star Wars” references into the hit show’s plots, including one in which her character Liz Lemon dressed up like Princess Leia to get out of jury duty. The real Princess Leia, Carrie Fisher, guest-starred in one episode, in which she screamed a modified version of one of her most iconic “Star Wars” lines — “Help me Liz Lemon! You’re my only hope!”
Stephen Colbert: The new “Late Show” host has claimed to be the “original” Star Wars fan, according to ET Canada. On his show last year, he could barely contain his excitement over the upcoming film’s first trailer, doing some of the featured sound effects for his audience. His devotion got him a one-on-one interview with “Star Wars” creator George Lucas at the Tribeca Film Festival earlier this year.
Simon Pegg: The actor, whom J.J. Abrams directed in the “Star Trek” reboot, says he wrote a student thesis on Ewoks and marks his life in terms of his relationship with the films. He also reportedly helped convince Abrams to cut down on the CGI we saw in the last three films, telling him how much his daughter loves the puppet version of Yoda. He also plays C-3PO in a “Funny or Die” sketch.
Weird Al Yankovic: The world’s most popular musical parody artist is an admitted “Star Wars” freak, having done two parody songs relating to the movies. He also recently visited with an 8-year-old girl in Virginia, who was bullied by other girls for loving “Star Wars.”
Seth Rogen: The actor appeared as an obsessed “Star Wars” fan with a massive Jar-Jar Binks back tattoo (among others) in the film “Fanboys.” Rogen also appeared as Luke Skywalker’s Uncle Owen in the Lucasfilm-produced video “Stand Up to Cancer,” and has joked (I think) about playing the slave master Watto in upcoming “Star Wars” films.
Conan O’Brien: The talk show host, who admits he’s a die-hard fan, has done many “Star Wars” parodies on his show. He also once accosted Harrison Ford about the famously bad “Star Wars” holiday special and tried bribing him to get details about the new film.
Seth MacFarlane: The “Family Guy” creator once told the Los Angeles Times that network lawyers were concerned Fox would get sued because MacFarlane was doing so many “Star Wars” jokes on the show. He actually screened the “Star Wars”-themed episode “Blue Harvest” for George Lucas and his son at Skywalker Ranch.
Jon Favreau: The actor-director has done voice-over work for the animated “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” series and has been rumored to be up for a directing gig on one of the upcoming films.
Megan Fox: She’s a huge fan, and has tweeted pictures of her “Star Wars” memorabilia collection, including a Boba Fett coaster and a life-size version of R2-D2 that lights up and makes noise. There were also rumors floating around more than a year ago that she was campaigning for a role in one of the upcoming films.
Kristen Bell: The actress appeared in “Fanboys,” also posing as “Slave Leia.” She has been seen out wearing “Star Wars” gear multiple times and is the subject of a Facebook page called “Kristen Bell is Star Wars Hot.” She’s also been spotted at at least one “Star Wars” convention.
Twiggy Ramirez: The Marilyn Manson guitarist and former member of Nine Inch Nails, also known as Jeordie White, has credited “Star Wars” for his own creativity, according to AskMen.com. One of his first bands, Amboog-A-Lard, named an album “A New Hope,” after the official title of the original “Star Wars” film. He has used the “The Imperial March” as opening music, and has a vast collection of Star Wars autographs and merchandise.
Samuel L. Jackson: The actor was such a big fan that he actually asked George Lucas if he could play a Jedi, once Lucas announced the second trilogy back in the ’90s.
J.J. Abrams: Of course he’s on the list. He would’ve been even if he wasn’t directing “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” When Abrams — who made semiregular “Star Wars” references on his hit TV show “Lost” — took the directing reigns of the “Star Trek” reboot, he admitted he was much more into “Star Wars” growing up. He initially said no to Lucasfilm when asked to take on “Star Wars,” saying he was too busy with “Star Trek” and he’d rather be in the audience when the film came out, not knowing what came next. Ultimately, he just couldn’t resist. And the rest is about to become “Star Wars” history.