Does Ted Cruz look like this Imperial officer from ‘Return of the Jedi’?

Ted Cruz’s favorite movie is reportedly “The Princess Bride,” but he has a connection to another beloved ’80s movie.

USE THIS PHOTO  A1 CENTERPIECE U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, a Republican from Texas, marks the start of his presidential campaign by giving the convocation address at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, U.S., on Monday, March 23, 2015. By kicking off his campaign at the Virginia Christian college founded by the late evangelist Jerry Falwell, rather than a venue in his home state, Cruz is signaling he’ll court religious conservatives as well as small-government tea-party activists as he competes to become the lead anti-establishment candidate in the party contest. Photographer: Jay Paul/Bloomberg *** Local Caption *** Ted Cruz
U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, a Republican from Texas, marks the start of his presidential campaign by giving the convocation address at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, U.S., on Monday, March 23, 2015. Photographer: Jay Paul/Bloomberg

An observant Twitter user spotted the Texas senator’s doppelganger in the opening scene of “Return of the Jedi,” as Imperial officers await the arrival of Darth Vader.

Cruz’s lookalike can be spotted at the 1:37 mark in the clip below. The man is decidedly not Ted Cruz  (especially since Cruz said he waited in line for two hours for “Empire Strikes Back” as a child), but the actor shares some of the Texas senator’s trademark facial features.

More: All the people Ted Cruz looks like (but probably isn’t)

The tweet was in response to a thumbnail image Uproxx used in a tweet promoting its review of “Rogue One.” The review argues that the latest installment in the “Star Wars” franchise reiterates that the series has always been political, no matter what Disney’s CEO or Trump supporters who are boycotting the film might say.

Most of the responses to the find centered on jokes about the conspiracy theories surrounding Cruz, namely, the Zodiac Killer meme that just won’t go away.

https://twitter.com/JlnFrancisco/status/808411840673959936

Those conspiracy theories have no evidence to support them, but Cruz has said in the past that “The Force Awakens” made him cry, so maybe he’ll get a kick out of this Internet theory.

“Rogue One” opens tomorrow in select theaters and goes in wide release Friday. Read our Statesman review of the film here.

Fans petition to create first LGBT ‘Star Wars’ character after Orlando shooting

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Photo via StarWars.com

“Star Wars” fans have created a petition calling for the franchise to make its first LGBT character in honor of the Orlando, Fla. mass shooting.

The change.org petition was created seven days ago by Joshua Yehl who was friends with Christopher Andrew “Drew” Leinonen — one of the 49 victims of the mass shooting that took place at the gay nightclub Pulse. Yehl writes to Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy and Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger, asking that the new character draw inspiration from Leinonen. Here is an excerpt from the petition:

On June 12, 2016, the world lost one of its most passionate Star Wars fans. On that day, 49 voices cried out and were silenced by hate. One of them was my best friend, Christopher Andrew “Drew” Leinonen. He and I bonded over many things, but nothing brought us together like Star Wars.

Yehl has garnered nearly 5,000 signatures, using the hashtag #PutDrewInStarWars on social media to spread the word. He writes that an LGBT character would not just be for Leinonen but for all the Orlando shooting victims.

“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” director J.J. Abrams said earlier this year that the film franchise is about inclusivity and welcomes the idea of having a gay character.

““I would love it,” he said in an interview with the The Daily Beast. “To me, the fun of Star Wars is the glory of possibility. So it seems insanely narrow-minded and counterintuitive to say that there wouldn’t be a homosexual character in that world.”

Book ‘World According to Star Wars’ connects intergalactic saga to real-life

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Photo courtesy of Lucasfilm.

Hey there, young Padawan. Today’s your first day toward becoming a Jedi Master.

Not really, but today could be your first day toward becoming a master of all things “Star Wars.” I’m sure you fancy yourself a pro already, but the book “The World According to Star Wars” seeks to teach you more.

Released May 31, the book by New York Times bestselling author Cass R. Sunstein explores the saga’s lessons as they relate to real-life. From parenting to constitutional law, Sunstein dives into the world of “Star Wars” on the deeper level you’ve always longed for.

To read up more on “The World According to Star Wars,” check out this Time review. Below is an excerpt from the book.

Emperor Palpatine is able to rise to power only because of the ceaseless, pointless squabbling of legislative representatives in the Republic. He seizes authority as a direct result of that squabbling. (For some Americans in the twenty-first century, witnessing similar squabbling, that seizure of authority does not lack appeal.) Padme sees the problem: “I was not elected to watch my people suffer and die while you discuss this invasion in committee.” So does Anakin: “We need a system where the politicians sit down and discuss the problem, agree what’s in the interest of all the people, and then do it,” Padme wonders: “What if they don’t?” Anakin: “Then they should be made to.”

Video of Texas woman in Chewbacca mask goes viral, breaks Facebook Live records

Candace Payne wears an electronic Chewbacca mask in video that went viral May 19. Photo via Candace Payne/Facebook.
Candace Payne wears an electronic Chewbacca mask in video that went viral May 19. Photo via Candace Payne/Facebook.

The Force is strong with Grand Prairie’s Candace Payne, the woman now known for wearing a Chewbacca mask in a video that went viral this weekend.

After making some returns at Kohl’s on Thursday, Payne sat in the parking lot and live-streamed a video of herself on Facebook, gushing over her latest purchase — a “Star Wars” Chewbacca electronic mask. As of Monday, the infectious, record-breaking video has received more than 136 million views, garnering Payne attention from BBC, NPR and “Good Morning America.”

“This is for me,” she said in the video, making it known the mask was not for her two kids. “I mean I’ll let them play with it I’m not a bad mom, I’m not a jerk — but in all honesty at the end of the day it doesn’t go in their toy box. It goes in my room.”

In an interview with Forbes, a Kohl’s representative said the Hasbro toy was originally $44.99 but put on clearance thanks to the overwhelming interest sparked by Payne’s video. And by Friday afternoon, the masks were sold out.

This led other Kohl’s representatives to show up at Payne’s door that same day with numerous toys in hand. They also gave her and her kids $2,500 in store gift cards and 10,000 rewards points.

The video also inspired #HappyChewbacca on Twitter. But the best part might just be the shoutout from actor Peter Mayhew, who has played the part of Chewy.

Dad dresses up like Darth Vader and wakes up toddler

Rob Lopez wakes up son while dressed as Darth Vader. Photo via Rob Lopez/YouTube.
Rob Lopez wakes up son while dressed as Darth Vader. Photo via Rob Lopez/YouTube.

Not long ago, in a galaxy nearby, one man used the Force to awaken his 2-year-old son.

Weekly YouTube vlogger Rob Lopez  decided to wake up his toddler while dressed as one of his son’s favorite “Star Wars” character, Darth Vader. And his initial reaction is priceless. A person can only hope to be as cool in the face of evil as Sebastian was.

 

This is the ‘Star Wars’/Pink Floyd mash-up you’re looking for

J.J. Abrams, you sly dog.

The “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” director and all-around nerd culture savior is known for putting Easter Eggs into his films, but this is just creepy.

Some Redditors discovered that if you play Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon” record right as the intro credits stop in “The Force Awakens,” some pretty eerie similarities pop up.

Promotional hand out photo of the cover of musical group Pink Floyd's album Dark Side of the Moon, released 1973. CREDIT: Capitol Records. Received 03/25/11 for OpEd.
Promotional hand out photo of the cover of musical group Pink Floyd’s album Dark Side of the Moon, released 1973. CREDIT: Capitol Records.

The running time of the film is 2 hours and 15 minutes, meaning the 42-minute album can be played a total of three times before the film ends. And some of the dialogue and musical cues sync up perfectly. (Some spoilers ahead, obviously).

For instance:

-In “Breathe (In the Air),” the line “Don’t leave me” syncs up perfectly with BB-8 running to attach himself to Poe Dameron’s ship

-The disorienting opening to “On the Run” matches Finn’s growing uncertainty in the middle of the film’s opening battle;

-The “Live for today, gone tomorrow” lyric is heard right before Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) swings his lightsaber to kill Lor San Tekka (Max von Sydow) in the opening action sequence; and

-Some evil cackling from the same song can be heard as Stormtroopers start to torch a village.

And those are just from the first eight minutes. Other examples, as listed by Consequence of Sound, include “I never said I was afraid of dying” being heard as the camera focuses on Han Solo in his final scene and “Brain Damage” seemingly matching the entire final scene where Rey meets Luke Skywalker.

This isn’t the first time a film has matched up with the breakthrough Pink Floyd album. “The Wizard of Oz” is well known for syncing with the album, forming “Dark Side of the Rainbow.” What could the titles be for this mash-up? “Dark Side of the Force Awakens”? “The Force Awakens the Dark Side of the Moon”? “The Dark Side of the Force”? It’s a match made in movie heaven.

While it’s a stretch to imagine Abrams did this on purpose or it’s just a happy coincidence, it’s a fun watch all the same. Check out the first eight minutes on Vimeo below, before it gets taken down. Then fire up the record and film for yourself, and see if there are any more similarities.