Generation after generation, families continue to pass down the magic of Star Wars by sharing The Force, lightsabers, and all of its legendary characters with their young ones. There’s no denying that the original Star Wars trilogy is anything but timeless. Even more amazing than its ability to stay relevant through the years is the lack of technology available to the folks creating the original back in 1977. CGI wasn’t anything like it is today.
What made the Star Wars trilogy so unique was its heavy reliance on matte paintings. These fake sets created with plexiglass and oil paint, were created by a handful artists at Industrial Light and Magic (ILM). This was a time when filmmakers couldn’t rely on CGI to do all their VFX for them, and had to put their efforts into handmade, highly detailed art pieces.
Below you will find some recently unearthed matte paintings of the original Star Wars trilogy films created by Chris Evans, Mike Pangrazio, Frank Ordaz, Harrison Ellenshaw and Ralph McQuarrie.
Purchase the original Star Wars trilogy on Amazon and see these beautiful matte paintings in action.