Star Wars Celebration 2017 is almost here. This year the convention will take place in Orlando, Florida, April 13-16 at the Orange County Convention Center. Hundreds of exclusive licensed collectibles will be available at this year’s show in light of the franchise’s 40th anniversary celebration. But Gentle Giant wins the nostalgia award for its choice of throwback exclusive ideas–a reproduction of the Dianoga from the 1978 Star Wars Death Star Space Station playset in a jumbo format.
First unveiled at the Gentle Giant booth at San Diego Comic-Con in 2010, the toy company began to re-create the original line of 3 3/4 Star Wars Kenner action figures in the size of the original large-sized action figures–about 12 inches tall. The company releases limited numbers of each figure with card backs and packaging reflecting the style of the originals. The company creates the jumbo figures from digital scans of the small figures. So if you fondly remember your first figure was C-3PO, you could purchase a giant version of the figure to display, or play with, at home. We at borg.com awarded Gentle Giant’s prototype, rocket-firing jumbo Boba Fett the best action figure release of the year here back in 2013.
So taking the first Star Wars creature toy ever released and offering it again in this anniversary year is inspired. The Dianoga was the only included figure in any of the regular release original Star Wars playsets–all others had to have been purchased separately (the only other “monster” from the movie to be made into a toy in the early years after Star Wars would be the Dewback). The Dianoga came with its own “garbage”–three sheets of yellow, blue, and white Styrofoam broken into bits, to soften the fall of Luke, Leia, Han, and Chewbacca from their famous fall into the trash compactor. Gentle Giant advertises this new exclusive release, too, will include foam garbage.