Inducted Year: 2012
When 20th Century Fox released the first Star Wars movie in May 1977, no one imagined it would change the toy industry and popular entertainment so dramatically. The film spawned many more episodes of a sprawling space opera that also generated sales of millions of action figures of the saga’s characters. The 3.75-inch figures—including Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia Organa, Han Solo, Chewbacca, R2-D2, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and more than 100 others—were sold from 1978 to 1985 and again from the mid-1990s to the present day. For more than three decades, kids have used Star Wars action figures—plus accessories, vehicles, and play sets—to tell stories of heroes and villains, of empire and rebellion, and of good triumphing over evil. Adults, too, play when they collect Star Wars action figures.
Factoyd: The 1970s oil shortage prompted Kenner to make Star Wars action figures smaller than competing toys such G. I. Joe. Less plastic reduced the purchase price and attracted even more fans