Friday February 8, 2002
Episode II Trading Cards
The Official Star Wars Site talks Episode II cards from Topps! For 25 years, Topps has been making Star Wars trading cards. Technology has come a long way since the original cardstock cards sealed in waxpacks with a shard of gum, and Topps has incorporated some of their leading-edge printing techniques into their Attack of the Clones set due out this spring.
"We're really excited about the movie, having seen some early footage, and working with the imagery that's coming in," says Topps editor Matthew Saunders. "Episode II hearkens back to the spirit of the original movies, so I think fans are going to be excited to see it. Plus, people are going to be blown away by some of the imagery that we're going to be able to show."
The set consists of 100 cards, which includes several key types -- character profiles, storyline cards, and behind-the-scenes cards. Each card type features a distinct design style.
Each of the 20 character cards features a photo of the highlighted character on the front, and a secondary picture on the back with a brief biography. "For a few characters like Lama Su or Count Dooku, this serves as an introduction to the characters, while for others like Padmé Amidala or Obi-Wan Kenobi, it updates their characters, bringing people up to speed," says Saunders.
The 69 storyline cards follow the events of the movie in sequential order, featuring stills drawn directly from the film itself. "It's all imagery directly from the movie that Lucasfilm has sent as they've been finalized with the visual effects ," notes Saunders. "You're going to get a main image on the front, plus on the back you'll get a secondary image, so really, it's 138 images."
Though these cards are standard size, care was taken to preserve the widescreen aspect ratio of the movie image. "What we've done with the design is a mock widevision look, with a border on the top and bottom of the card so we have a longer, wider image. It's a letterbox effect," says Saunders.
The nine behind-the-scenes cards offer on-set photography and brief factoids on the scenes and actors.
Topps is printing these cards on heavy 20-point stock, finished with a mirror-gloss coating. "On top of all that, the logo on the front is going to be silver-foil stamped. We feel we've got a wonderful, classy-looking card with all three techniques combined," adds Saunders.
Card collectors can look forward to hunting down three types of chase cards: a series of eight prismatic foil cards, ten silver foil cards, and five foldout cards.
"The foils are beautiful collage imagery that Lucasfilm made, and we're taking advantage of that and adding the effects of the foil and some other elements we've added to the design," says Saunders.
The five fold-out cards, something new to Star Wars collectors, are cards that open up to twice their size to show wider, panoramic views.
"We always try to outdo ourselves with Star Wars, because it's a wonderful franchise and it deserves the best," says Saunders. "I think the combination of these technologies and this imagery will give fans something that they will hold in their hands and really feel like they've got a great card."
The Topps sets are scheduled for release on April 23, though promotional cards will start distributing before that. For a list of promo cards, and their availability, head over to the Official Star Wars Site!