An elegant weapon for a more civilized cosplay.
Most Impressive Fans is a feature highlighting the amazing creativity of Star Wars devotees, from cosplay to props. If there’s a fearless and inventive fan out there, we’ll highlight them here.
Artist Angelica “Moya” Kojima is a cosplayer with a heart of kyber crystal.
During Star Wars Celebration Europe last year, she suited up to pay homage to her favorite Star Wars film with an unforgettable ensemble — a larger than life version of Luke Skywalker's green-bladed lightsaber. She even snagged a photo-op with Mark Hamill himself, who gamely posed as if he were about to duel Darth Vader.
In honor of the 40th anniversary, during Celebration Orlando she revisited the role with a fresh twist, this time creating a costume version of Anakin's lightsaber, gifted to Luke in the original film.
This time Moya, 25, had the chance to stand beside Hamill and Hayden Christensen for an epic photo spread that completed her personal trilogy.
After returning to her home in Tokyo, we tracked Moya down to find out what made the costumer buck the usual trend of celebrity portraits with her unique and unwieldy costume choices.
Near and dear
It was Moya's love for the character of Luke in Return of the Jedi that drew her to the original idea last year as she was preparing to meet-and-greet Hamill at Celebration. The artist and costumer typically opts for dresses with a vintage flair or crafting dioramas, she says.
“I thought, 'What is the nearest thing to Jedi Luke?' And my answer was 'Luke's lightsaber.'” After all, Luke forged the weapon with care and always kept it by his side, she reasoned. What more perfect ensemble could she wear to pose with the actor who brought Luke to life?
She couldn't get past TSA with a giant lightsaber suit, so after two days of prep, much of the work completing the first saber costume — a mix of metallic silver fabric, cardboard, styrofoam, “and a lot of glue,” complete with a tiny inflatable blade — was done over three hours in her London hotel room.
Initially, Moya was nervous that her costume would leave fellow fans befuddled.
But she was confident that if anyone was likely to get it, it would be the devotees at Celebration.
Moya could barely see a thing in that saber, she couldn't talk, and her arms were pinned inside the oversized hilt, so she relied on her boyfriend, Kenichi “Ken” Hamashima, to help her navigate and communicate.
Moya made her way through the queue to meet Mark Hamill. “So my boyfriend said to Mark, 'Could you please hold this as a lightsaber?'”
Hamill burst into a laugh, then complied and struck a pose.
When Moya decided she was heading to Orlando to celebrate the 40th anniversary, she knew she wanted to recapture the magic with Luke's original saber.
The fact that Hayden Christensen, who played Anakin in the prequels, was later announced as a celebrity guest was a fortuitous accident. Or as Moya puts it, “It was a miracle.”
With one trial under her...well, lightsabers don't really have belts, do they? But suffice it to say her experience helped inform a more user-friendly second saber suit.
'I think he remembered me'
Moya sketched out an easy design, and got to work measuring the individual parts using images of the movie prop for guidance.