Two Star Wars fans have taken their love of the franchise to the next level, launching an X-Wing fighter into space in a bid to score tickets to the premiere of The Force Awakens.
The X-Wing’s flight is the result of Matt Kingsnorth and Phil St. Pier’s efforts, according to CNET. As part of their Project Helium Tears, the duo strapped a model of an X-Wing fighter to a high altitude weather balloon, equipped with GoPro cameras to record the flight. The mission to send the X-Wing into space took the duo six months to complete, according to BBC News, and cost them roughly £1,200. The resulting footage depicts the fighter at an altitude of 36,190 m (118,000 ft), soaring above the curve of the Earth’s horizon before the balloon bursts.
Kingsnorth and St. Pier, both of whom hail from Essex, England, according to the Verge, tweeted video of the X-Wing’s flight to Star Wars: The Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams, urging others to do the same. In a scrolling plea meant to evoke the opening text of the Star Wars films, the duo asked Abrams for an invitation to the film’s premiere, acknowledging that the answer would typically be a negative.
“Ordinarily, the answer would be no… So we thought we’d try something extraordinary,” the text reads. “We know you like practical effects and shooting in real locations. And we really love that there are X-Wings in the new film so…”
— The Next Web (@TheNextWeb) April 27, 2015
Abrams does indeed prefer practical effects, so much so that one of the new droids featured in The Force Awakens, BB-8, is a practical effect instead of a CGI actor. As the Inquisitr has previously reported, BB-8 has quickly become a breakout star of the new film, in part due to a large presence in the movie’s marketing and at Disney parks. A soon-to-be-released toy modeled after the ball droid is also sure to become a must-have for Star Wars fans this holiday season.
Star Wars Fans Sent an X-wing to Space to Try and Score ‘Episode VII’ Premiere Tickets. http://t.co/W7cbQTFUXl pic.twitter.com/xjLDXlgDcF
— RYOT NEWS (@RYOTnews) April 27, 2015
When the first teaser trailer for The Force Awakens was released late last year, fans were excited to see that X-Wing fighters would feature in at least one scene, but their configuration is slightly different than in the classic Star Wars films. Only time will tell if Kingsnorth and St. Pier’s video will succeed in attracting Abrams’ attention, but in the meantime, the duo will hold a special distinction among Star Wars fans for their successful effort to put an X-Wing in space.
[Image: Project Helium Tears via Comicbook.com]