Entertainment Tonight host Ash Crossan got an interesting quote out of ‘The Lion King’ director Jon Favreau. During a chat on the red carpet of the 45th annual Saturn Awards, Favreau made a pitch for a Disney+ special involving Star Wars and a certain Winter festival. Yes, he wants to make the ‘Star Wars Holiday Special’ a thing again.
Jon Favreau told me he wants to do a Star Wars Holiday Special on Disney+
Please let this happen 🙏🏻
— Ash Crossan (@AshCrossan) September 16, 2019
Though probably entirely in jest, the original show he is referencing does have a certain allure that just may work for Disney.
The ‘Star Wars Holiday Special’ was a one-off event that aired on CBS in 1978. It starred many of the original members of ‘A New Hope’ and featured a great, but short, animated segment by Nelvana. Like many other holiday-themed specials of the ’70s, this was more of a variety show than an actual sci-fi romp through space.
Rather than telling a straight forward story, the special wraps a short adventure involving Han and Chewy around several skits and musical numbers featuring some of the most popular names of the era. These included Art Carney, Beatrice Arthur, Harvey Korman, The Jefferson Starship, and Diahann Carroll. Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamil, and the gang do appear briefly in cameos and during the ensemble at the end.
Universally panned and quite disliked by George Lucas, the special was never aired again on television. Copies floated around at conventions for many years and this odd entry into ‘Star Wars’ history eventually found its way online. Though in no way canon, the variety show-like oddity has gained a cult following. Rifftrax offers up a great commentary track for the ‘Star Wars Holiday Special’.
The red carpet interview can be seen in full below: