SWCE 2013: “The Golden Hour” Panel with Anthony Daniels – Liveblog

Next up on the Main Stage here at Star Wars Celebration Europe is none other than C-3PO himself, Anthony Daniels.

16:03: Warwick Davis takes the stage! He is talking about how Star Wars led to a career in acting, but he’s still a fan, and wants to talk with a fan. Attendee Ben comes to the stage.

16:07: Ben tells Davis that he’s his favorite character, who insists Ben was chosen at random. He says that since Ben likes Ewoks, most of the audience probably hates him.

16:10: Davis’ interpreter droid joins him. It’s an upgraded green and white astromech that speaks. He says he speaks English, some German, and Bocce. “Anthony Daniels speaks Bocce,” the droid says. Davis: “Go over there and have a chat with the air conditioner.”

16:13: Now playing a highlight reel of Threepio. Davis introduces Anthony Daniels, but a stage hand comes out and whispers in Warwick’s ear. She tells Warwick that Daniels demands “a full Ewok welcome.” “Yub Nub” plays and the audience bows!

16:15: Anthony Daniels emerges, but is not happy with Warwick’s instructions on Ewok chanting. “Maybe you’re a fake!” he says, and orders everyone to their feet. “If you want Warwick to keep his job for the next three days, you will learn this song.”

16:19: The crowd finally gets it right, and Daniels re-emerges sporting a gold blazer. He talks about his favorite line from Return of the Jedi, It appears Captain Solo, that you are to be the main course of a banquet in my honor.” He then says that as the first Celebration Main Stage host, he invented Davis’ job.

16:21: Daniels talks about how being able to interact live with fans is what makes Celebration special, especially for a film actor where you get no immediate feedback or reaction.

16:24: Daniels talks about the Threepio voice: He’s uptight, he’s in conflict with other characters and other droids. A personality like that makes your voice higher. The body language also came from Daniels, not the costume — the upright stance and the hands outward, ready to serve, are all part of the character.

16:29: Regarding the stunts in Jedi, Daniels did not make the fall from Jabba’s sail barge. It was a stunt woman who also doubled for Carrie Fisher. And because of the limited vision from Threepio’s mask, “I would rehearse while memorizing where everything was.”

16:32: Daniels: “It is kind of nice to walk around and recognized, but it’s also nice when people say ‘thank you’…There is no better word than fan…Without you we would never have made the second movie, we would never have made the third movie.”

16:35: Asked if digital can sometimes “take the life” out of something, Daniels smiles and nods, the audience cheers. “Listen,” Daniels says.

16:36: Tell me what your thoughts were when you first heard they were making new Star Wars movies. Daniels just smiles.

16:40: Davis has now started “Stage Wars,” where he will recreate a scene with Anthony and members of the audience. It’s the scene where Luke and Uncle Own buy Threepio in A New Hope!

16:44: Before recreating the scene, Daniels recounts how during the filming of that scene, Artoo was malfunctioning and ramming him. That led to Daniels moving to the side of Artoo during the third take.

16:46: Fan extras are now on stage to play Jawas, and Artoo himself has joined, lining up next to Davis’ translator. “I’m going to play Uncle Owen,” Davis says. “It’s going to alter the eye-line a little bit, isn’t it??” Davis says.

16:51: The scene begins. Davis bickers with Threepio then chooses to buy him. A fan playing Luke comes into scene. “Can you do it more whiney,” Daniels asks. “He’s not even mine!” Davis says in-character.

16:53: The scene ends with Artoo knocking into Daniels (as commanded by Davis), a la the mishaps during the original filming.

16:55: It’s time for “Galaxy Quest…ions,” Star Wars trivia. Daniels doing great but gets “Han Solo made the Kessel Run in how many parsecs?” wrong. (The answer is 12.) Overall, he gets 8/10.

17:00: Audience questions! Did you ever think on the first day of shooting that Star Wars would turn into such a phenomenon? Daniels says no, that the shoot was hard and very hot in the desert. But he’s glad he was wrong.

17:03: How did you enjoy playing other characters in Episodes II and III? Daniels says he wanted to play a character with a face, and asked Lucas if he could be an extra. “Sure,” Lucas said. “I will tell you that being an extra is one of the most boring things…I decided never to do it again.”

17:08: Asked about Threepio’s complaining, Daniels says, “Nothing is ever going to give him pleasure; he’s always at odds with his world.” He then tells the story of a deleted scene from Episode I in which Padme gives Threepio his outer coverings. They finished it, everyone loved it, but “George said, ‘No, we don’t have time for this,'” and cut it out. But maybe some day it will be released…

That’s it! Thanks for following along!