So, how excited are you about the new Star Wars movie coming out in December this year? Well, it may still be more than six months until the release of the film, but Star Wars fans in Japan have something to be excited about right now! Currently on show at the Tokyo City View observation deck in Roppongi Hills is the intergalactically cool “Star Wars Visions” exhibit.

There’s never been a shortage of Star Wars fans in Japan, and the exhibit promises to attract huge crowds throughout its duration. And we’re not kidding when we say huge crowds — the exhibit drew considerable media attention earlier this month on May 4, which is internationally recognized as Star Wars Day and which also happens to be a public holiday in Japan, when guests were allowed to enjoy the event in cosplay and the waiting time for entry to the exhibit grew to nearly six hours.

Naturally, we had to go and check out this event that was creating enough buzz to cause a disturbance in the force!

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The Sky Gallery of the Tokyo City View observation deck, where the exhibit is being held, is located on the 52nd floor of the Roppongi Hills Mori Tower, so it also offers a breathtaking view of the city of Tokyo. The exhibit itself showcases nearly 60 works of Star Wars-inspired art by various artists as well as approximately 100 items belonging to the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art including conceptual art, props and costumes that were used in the actual films. George Lucas has commented that he organized this exhibit specifically with the artistic sensibilities of Japanese fans in mind and through it, he hopes that he is able to show a different side of Star Wars and inspire young people’s interest in art.

The exhibit, which is divided into six sections, gives an overview of the world and fictional events portrayed in Episodes I to VI of the spectacularly popular movie series, as well as how the films have inspired numerous artists around the world, many of whom have their work on display. It should provide solid background information for Star Wars novices and also satisfy hardcore fans with all the eye-catching props and miniature models — a true Star Wars feast!


Once you enter the exhibit, you’ll find that you’re surrounded by a legion of stormtroopers on the wall, and you definitely won’t miss the impressive Death Star model hanging overhead or the life-size Darth Vader figure waiting to greet you. Yes, the Dark Side is out to capture you in full force!

▼ You’re greeted by the Dark Lord himself at the entrance hall!

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Once you’ve escaped the menace of Darth Vader and his stormtroopers, you can enter the six sections of the actual exhibit.

1. The Original Vision

This section mainly shows items from works such as the Flash Gordon series and Akira Kurosawa’s movie The Hidden Fortress, which helped inspire Lucas’ ideas for the original Star Wars movies. It also gives you a summary of the six Star Wars films created to date, so you can refresh your memory here.


2. Vision of FORCE

The theme of the second section in the exhibit is the Force, the metaphysical power that binds the galaxy together in the Star Wars universe. The dark and light sides of the Force are, of course, a central theme in the series, and in this section, you can see not only works of art focusing on the Force as subject matter, but  also light sabers used by the different jedi and sith warriors on display. It’s intriguing to see that each light saber is really quite different in design!




3. Vision of BATTLE

As fans are well aware, Star Wars is also a story involving many battles, through which the bonds between family, friends, teacher and apprentice are portrayed.  This section of the exhibit showcases the various battleships, fighter planes, weapons and soldiers that appear in the battles. Sure to be a treat for anyone with an interest in weaponry and battlecraft, the items here are displayed according to battle, allowing for easy reference.






4. Vision of SAGA

This section might be considered the main attraction of the exhibit. The costumes for the main characters including Luke Skywalker, Han Solo and Princess Leia alone are enough to delight and entrance fans for hours, and in addition, beautiful portraits depicting the heroes and heroines decorate the walls.


▼ It’s a thrill to see the memorable characters and scenes captured on canvas.


5. Vision of GALAXY

This section of the exhibit is sure to delight and entertain, as it focuses on the various planets and lifeforms from the world of Star Wars. There are miniature scenes recreated from the planets Coruscant and Tatooine, and even better, you can see figures of the numerous colorful aliens that appear in the series!


▼ Yes, Jabba the Hut is always a favorite …


▼ … and we can’t forget the adorable Ewoks, can we? The furry fella was larger than we expected!


6. Vision of DROID

And of course, Star Wars has brought us some memorable droids, which are the focus of this sixth and last section of the exhibit. Here, you can see a three-minute video in which the lovable C-3PO and R2-D2 give a brief recap of Episodes I to VI.

▼ The droids are there to greet you in person, and you get to see their lovely portraits as well.



And once you’re finished immersing yourself in the world of Star Wars, it’s time to explore the Star Wars Exhibit Special Shop. A huge selection of merchandise is available including T-shirts, stationary, figures, mugs, tote bags, plushies and even Japanese style wooden kokeshi dolls, all of them looking highly attractive, so fans will definitely be facing some serious shopping temptation here.




▼ Wow, those 1/4 life-size Wicket the Ewok dolls are adorable! Unfortunately, they seem to be sold out now.


And after you’re done battling the shopping demons, you can get your picture taken with Darth Vader at the Sky Deck on the roof of the Mori Tower! It’ll cost you an extra 500 yen (US$4.17) to get up to the Sky Deck, and 2,000 yen ($16.68) to purchase a professional shot of yourself and the Dark Lord, but they’ll take a quick snap with your camera or phone free of charge as well, so you’ll have a visual memento to take home with you.

▼Here’s the photo spot on the Sky Deck. They even give you a light saber to hold,  so you can get a picture of yourself locked in combat with Darth Vader.


▼ You can also get your picture taken with the Lord Vader figure at the entrance hall.

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But that’s not all!. There are several other spots you should check out if you come to Roppongi Hills for the Star Wars exhibit.

▼ Here’s a collection displayed on the second floor of Roppongi Hill’s West Walk featuring “stormtrooper helmet artwork” created by numerous artists around the world working for creative outlets including Lucasfilm, Disney and Pixar.





▼ Here’s a display of roughly 80 Star Wars character figures on the fourth floor of the West Walk.

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▼ Some of these guys are apparently quite valuable.

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▼ Ahhh… our favorite heroes!

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▼ And here’s the collection of approximately 150 die-cast Star Wars metal figures displayed on the West Walk second floor.

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▼ Here we have Darth Vader and Jango Fett brought to life with Lego!

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But we weren’t quite finished yet. This was Roppongi Hills, one of the most fashionable (and pricey) shopping areas in Tokyo, so it stands to reason that individual boutiques in the huge shopping/dining/entertainment complex would also be offering their own Star Wars merchandise, separately from the special exhibit shop. Do we dare ask what attractive items are available, even if it means fighting off more shopping demons? We guess the answer’s yes!

 ▼ These miniature figures offered at the Roppongi Hills Art & Design Store are just too cute!

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▼ Darth Vader looks cool even turned into toy figures, of course!


▼ Here are some awesome looking towels from the TOUCH shop on the fourth floor of the West Walk.

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▼ And these lovely Star Wars umbrellas from HANWAY, also located on the West Walk’s fourth floor, look like they would be the perfect way to brighten a rainy day.

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Although we couldn’t get around to see them all, there are many other Star Wars goods available at various stores in the complex, which you can see here on the special exhibit website.

Well, that brings us to the end of our report on the Star Wars Visions exhibit. The event runs until June 28, and for Star Wars fan who are going to be in the Tokyo area during that time, it could well be worth a visit. However, it should be noted that very large crowds and long lines are expected on weekends.

▼ A final farewell from the forces of the Galactic Empire, displayed at the exit of the exhibition …

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▼ … and we’ll leave you with this familiar message:


[Details of Star Wars Visions Exhibit]
・Period: From April 29 to June 28, 2015
・Location: Sky Gallery, Tokyo City View Observation Deck (52nd Floor of Roppongi Hills Mori Tower)
・Hours: 10:00 am~10:00 pm daily (last entry at  9:30 pm)
・Admission: 1,800 yen for adults, 1,500 yen for seniors 65 and above, 1,200 yen for students high school and above, 600 yen for children 4 yrs old through middle school
*Additional 500 yen admission necessary for Sky Deck rooftop

© & TM Lucasfilm Ltd
Reference: Star Wars Visions exhibit website (Japanese)
Original article and report by: Kaori Saito © Pouch
Photos: © Pouch and RocketNews24

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