Mark Hamill Reveals the 1 Movie That Changed His Life — He Lived It Out in ‘Star Wars: Return of the Jedi’

Star Wars actor Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), revealed the one movie that changed his life to Joe and Anthony Russo’s Pizza Film School on June 26, 2020. The brothers thought they were going to talk about Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, but Hamill went off on so many tangents that they got way more than they intended to.

'Star Wars' Mark Hamill
‘Star Wars’ Mark Hamill | Rich Fury/Getty Images

The Russo Brothers asked Hamill if he knew there was going to be a third ‘Star Wars’ movie

During the fourth episode of Russo Bros. Pizza Film School, the group discussed how dark Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back was. This conversation brought Joe Russo to question whether or not Hamill and the other actors knew there was going to be a third movie. To answer the question, the actor went off on a deep tangent about how he could not believe he was in such a film. 

“By the time we did Empire, the law of averages is it’s going to make enough money that they are going to want to do a third,” Hamill responded. “I don’t know if George got any pushback from the studio on how downbeat and dark it was, but he certainly had a lot more say in what we were doing than I think he did on the first one.”

However, after answering the question, Hamill added several additional points before letting the Russo brothers ask any other questions.

“I love the Universal horror films,” he continued. “This was right down my alley.”

Hamill then revealed the 1 movie that changed his life

“The movie that changed my life was the black and white King Kong. I saw it on The Million Dollar Movie when we were living in New York. It’s epic,” Hamill said. “It was the first movie that made me cry my eyes out. I was hoping somehow that they wouldn’t bring Kong back to New York. I somehow hoped that he would escape his fate, but it got me every single time.” 

He went on to explain that working on Star Wars: Return of the Jedi was like living out his favorite childhood movie in real life.

“By the time I was in the Rancor’s hand, I had my Fay Wray moment,” Hamill continued. “There I am in the monster’s hand. I got excited about this sort of stuff.”

Vina Fey Rey portrayed Ann Darrow, the blonde captive of King Kong, in 1933. Fifty years later, in 1983, Hamill played the part of Luke Skywalker being held in the hand of the fearsome rancor monster in Jabba the Hutt’s pit.

Hamill admitted that he was the most excited of all the actors

The 68-year-old actor still shows enormous passion when discussing the Star Wars movies. He told the Russo brothers that he was the one with the most enthusiasm back when they were filming.


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“I was the one who would say ‘Hey, you guys look, my face is on the back of the cereal box,'” Hamill explained. “I was the real enthusiast of the bunch.”

He remembers sitting next to the famous Alec Guinness on one side and then a “furry monkey” on the other hand — Chewbacca, of course. The whole thing was surreal for him back then, and to this day, he talks about the time very fondly.