There are few film franchises that inspire loyalty and devotion like Star Wars. Whether it’s through films, videogames, books, online role-playing games, toys, the effect that Star Wars has had on popular culture in the last thirty years is nothing short of incredible. Star Wars is a household name and a worldwide brand. Invasion, the only Star Wars convention in the Republic, ran at CityWest Hotel & Conference from 4th to the 7th May .
‘This is our eighth year running Invasion and our third year in Dublin’, says organiser Craig Kingma. ‘Last year, we had an attendance of 12,000 and we’re hoping to grow on that this year.’ Walking around the stalls and events – which include screenings of both trilogies, autograph stalls and Q&A sessions with Billy Dee Williams (Lando Calrissian), James Arnold Taylor (Obi-Wan Kenobi / Animated Clone Wars series) and Jeremy Bulloch (Boba Fett) and a Star Wars wedding (yes, really) – it’s clear that Invasion Dublin has something for every Star Wars fan – young and old alike.
As well as these, Invasion Dublin also features life-size replica props from the series – including a full-size AT-ST Walker, an Endor speederbike and the Cantina band. The Emerald Garrison (irelandgarrison.com) had some of their set design work on display at the convention. The level of detail really is impressive and has to be seen to be believed. They even do a live sculpting of some characters at the event. ‘Some of them (Emerald Garrison) are carpenters, electricians – they worked on the props and costumes themselves in their own time,’ Kingma explains. Whether you’re a die-hard fan or your kids are, Invasion Dublin promises to be bigger and better next year. ‘We’re going to be expanding again next year, we’re having a great time with this and we hope to grow from here and make Invasion better and better with each year.’