Star Wars fans staying up for The Force Awakens

Gemma Parsons in her rebel fighter costume and Jason Zimmerman as Darth Vader pose are keenly awaiting the midnight premiere of the new Star Wars film. Picture: Adam McLean

Gemma Parsons in her rebel fighter costume and Jason Zimmerman as Darth Vader pose are keenly awaiting the midnight premiere of the new Star Wars film. Picture: Adam McLean

Gemma Parsons was marked out to be a Star Wars fan at birth.

She and her two elder sisters were each  born in a Star Wars year – 1977, 1980 and 1983.

“I’m a Return of the Jedi baby,” Ms Parsons said.

“So we all grew up with it. And my parents were supportive of it. There’s a bit of nostalgia there for us with the Star Wars movies.

“If you grew up with it you tend to be a bit more forgiving of some of the corniness that is Star Wars.”

The Force Awakens, the first Star Wars film since 2005’s Revenge of the Sith, opens on Thursday.

Ms Parsons will be heading to the midnight premiere at Shellharbour cinema – and will be seeing it again on Saturday night.

While she was disappointed with the three prequels, Ms Parsons said she is “quietly optimistic” that The Force Awakens will be good.

It’s the first Star Wars midnight premiere she has been to, and she had spent all week working on her Princess Leia costume that she plans to wear on the night (she also has a rebel fighter outfit with a helmet she painted herself).

“I went to a marathon on Star Wars Day – May the Fourth – at Shellharbour last year and it was like watching a film with your family,” she said.

“Everybody cracked up in the corny bits that were funny and were quoting bits as the movie went along. It was a really nice atmosphere and a really great way to watch a film.”

She said the timing of the trilogies helped “keep the flame burning” in Star Wars fans, giving them something to look forward to.

But the enduring nature of the films is that they cross generations.

“I think they’re films for everybody,” she said.

“They’re films that families can watch and that was my experience growing up. They were films that we loved as kids but our parents also loved and I think that’s something they’ve done really well in leaving it so long before bringing out new trilogies is that it becomes a generational thing, parents can watch them with their children.

“Kids who grew up with Star Wars now have kids of their own, and they can go take their kids to the cinema and enjoy the movie together.”

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