Darth Vader was the very first Original Trilogy Mini Bust created by Gentle Giant Ltd. And it goes without saying that it was probably the greatest first character choice to make in this very popular line. What makes the piece especially exciting is that Darth Vader is based after his appearance in The Empire Strikes Back and not A New Hope. The significantly revised costume for Episode V is much cleaner and more fitted that the one seen in Episode IV. In fact, it’s this exact look of Darth Vader that most people identify. And how could you not? It’s definitely the coolest look of Darth Vader. As with any of Gentle Giant’s products, the Darth Vader Mini Bust is another incredible sculpt. Although simply painted, the use of flat and glossy black paint is done with finesse and refinement. You’ll be hard pressed to find reasons to criticize this piece. Then again, some can find fault in anything.
Darth Vader’s pose shows signs of dissatisfaction of discontent. Whether this sculpt has been inspired from the “No, I am your father” scene in The Empire Strikes Back or not, the collector is left with the fact that Darth Vader is hell bent on making a point. His left hand up and in an angrily gripped position. He looks to wither be beckoning to Luke in an outstretched manner, or maybe he is using the dark side of the Force to crush the throats of Admiral Ozzel or Captain Needa. The choice is yours. But this obvious versatility shows how much inspiration has been considered and then put into place for this Mini Bust so it provides a relatively endless selection of interpretations for collectors. Keep in mind that regular Mini Busts (without modular parts) are one pose. So the fact that multiple scenes from The Empire Strikes Back are visible in this one sculpture is very impressive.
Darth Vader is limited to only 3500 pieces. This unfortunately seems much too small of an edition size for the most popular character in the Star Wars saga. Boba Fett, released the same year, had an edition size of 7500 pieces. It seems that their respective edition sizes should have been much more similar than distant from each other. Expect this piece to be hard to attain for your collection as the years go by because it is our feeling that 3500 pieces is barely enough to satisfy collectors on the tip of the collecting iceberg. With Darth Vader and Boba Fett seeing release in the Mini Bust line a year after its inception, it is inevitable that we will be seeing a plethora more Original Trilogy characters in the future. Think about the range of characters Gentle Giant Ltd. still has yet to produce in the line. And if they make these future characters in the same fashion as the beautiful Darth Vader Mini Bust, there is much to look forward to in the future.
Status: Darth Vader leaps off the screen and into your hands with this limited edition mini-bust. This product is an authentic, licensed collectible designed and developed by Gentle Giant Studios. To assure 100% realism, Gentle Giant Studios three-dimensionally scanned the actors, costumes, and props as well as original uniforms and models from the Lucasfilm archives. This information was then processed, digitally output, and combined with traditional sculpting artistry to create the final sculpture.
Date Stamp: 2002
Retail: $49.99 USD
Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on listings.