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May The Fourth Be With You, How Star Wars Has Inspired Artists

Art by Jonathan Queen/ design by Kevin Necessary
The Star Wars franchise has inspired artists for more than four decades.

Star Wars: A New Hope was released in 1977. In 1979, to celebrate Margaret Thatcher's election as Britain's first female prime minister, her party placed an ad in the London Evening News that read, "May the Fourth Be With You, Maggie. Congratulations." That's how popular the movie, and the phrase, "May the force be with you," had become.

Forty-two years later, the Star War films have grossed more than $9 billon worldwide. The franchise has also been responsible for hundreds of millions more in merchandise sales, and an entire industry of Star Wars inspired artwork.

Now, May 4 each year is unofficially recognized as Star Wars Day. And in Cincinnati, local artists are celebrating with a party and a showing and sale of movie and character themed artwork.

Joining Cincinnati Edition to discuss how the Star Wars franchise has influenced and inspired artists during the last four decades are artist and owner of Christina Wald illustration, Christina Wald (@yellokat_cwald); artist and owner ofLuschek Studio of Drawing and Painting, Richard Luschek (@LuschekStudio); and illustrator and editorial cartoonist Kevin Necessary (@knecessary).

The Cincinnati May the Fourth Be With You party and art saletakes place Saturday May 4 (of course) from 5-11 p.m. at the Brew House. A portion of proceeds will benefit the Force for Change charity.

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Michael Monks brings a broad range of experience to WVXU-FM as the host of Cincinnati Edition, Cincinnati Public Radio's weekday news and information talk show.