The Star Wars Holiday Special (1978)

TV Movie  |   |  Adventure, Family, Musical  |  17 November 1978 (USA)
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Chewbacca and Han Solo try to get home to Chewie's family to celebrate Life Day, which includes various forms of entertainment.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
R2-D2 (as R2-D2)
Darth Vader (voice)
Ackmena (as Beatrice Arthur)
Saun Dann
Marty Balin ...
Holographic Band Singer (as The Jefferson Starship)
Craig Chaquico ...
Holographic Band Member (as The Jefferson Starship)
David Freiberg ...
Holographic Band Singer (as The Jefferson Starship)
Paul Kantner ...
Holographic Band Member (as The Jefferson Starship)
Krelman / Chef Gormaanda / Amorphian instructor


It is Life Day, a holiday that is celebrated on Chewbacca's home planet Kashyyyk. Chewie and Han Solo are trying to get to the planet where Chewie's family is waiting for him, but the Empire is out searching for the Rebels, giving everyone a hard time. While we are waiting we get a look at the everyday life of a Wookiee family. We meet all the familiar characters from Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) and we are introduced to Boba Fett during a short cartoon. We also pay a visit to the Cantina and meet all the monsters again. Written by Kynde

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Luke Skywalker and Han Solo battle evil Imperial forces to help Chewbacca reach his imperiled family on the Wookiee planet - in time for Life Day, their most important day of the year!

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

17 November 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The 'Star Wars' Christmas Special  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| | (re-cut)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Cantina sequence took an entire day to shoot. The actors in alien costumes began to pass out due to lack of oxygen. Oxygen tanks were provided for them to use between takes. See more »


Holographic wow: I am your fantasy. I am your experience. So experience me. I am your pleasure. Enjoy me. This is our moment together in time that we might turn this moment into an eternity.
See more »

Crazy Credits

R2-D2 as R2-D2 See more »


Referenced in Undergrads: Jerks (2001) See more »


Light the Sky on Fire
Performed by Jefferson Starship
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

25 April 2002 | by (New York City) – See all my reviews

I was stoned out of my mind when I saw this thing. It's truly stunning. Note that Hollywood Squares staple Bruce Vilanch was one of the writers. (This show bears odd similarities to his other opus, "The Brady Bunch Variety Hour".) By the time this creation, which I call "Episode 4.5" was in its zenith, so was I; the pipe was empty. I felt as though Princess Leia's voice was vibrating in my spine. At one point she looked right at me and I saw her with my entire face, not just my eyes. The best moments are with Bea Arthur. I rewound the exchange between her and "Ludlow" and "Thorpe" about twenty times. "Short memory, eh, Thorpe? SHORT MEMORY!" By the time the Wookies were walking through outer space in red robes towards what appears to be the sun I felt as though I was with them. I don't remember the cartoon, but I do recall Mark Hamill looking like he was auditioning for the Gay Ice Capades. Also, you will find out several things you may have wanted to know about "Star Wars":

How do Wookies entertain themselves? Why is Grandpa Wookie named "Itchy"? What is the warm, cuddly side of Han Solo? What would a love scene between Bea Arthur and Harvey Korman REALLY look like? What are the lyrics to the "Star Wars" theme? And what would they sound like if Princess Leia sang them? What would it be like for an aged, portly Art Carney to engage in a familiar "Honeymooners" routine with an Imperial Guard as his Ralphie-boy? But it stll leaves several questions: Why does "Lumpy" so resemble the kid from "Eight is Enough"? Why do the characters from "Star Wars" never change their clothes until "The Empire Strikes Back"? What was the story behind the "Short memory!" crack? Was there a romance between Bea Arthur and "Thorpe"? If so, what are the long-term consequences to the Cantina atmosphere? Was Bea Arthur just filling in that day for the big ugly fellow who ran the bar in "A New Hope"? Or does she own the place? Why do Imperial Guards adore "Jefferson Starship", and why do old Wookies have a fetish for African-American Humans?

I hope Lucas creates another one of these. I would love to see Jar-Jar Binks exchange puns with Kelsey Grammar or Ray Romano.

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