Menu
Entertainment

Getting under Chewy’s very furry skin

Actor Peter Mayhew played the popular Star Wars character Chewbacca.
Actor Peter Mayhew played the popular Star Wars character Chewbacca. Lionel Midford Publicity

PETER Mayhew has a theory about why Chewbacca is the Star Wars character loved by all ages.

"I figure that he is a teddy bear," Mayhew told APN.

"Everybody has a teddy bear or security blanket at some stage in their lives."

Mayhew is the original and only actor to play the large hairy Wookiee warrior in George Lucas's galactic film franchise.

A stand-in was used for a brief period when Mayhew was unwell, but the substitute couldn't imitate his distinctive walk.

"It just didn't work," he said. "I went back the next week, did those things again and we moved on."

In the absence of lines, Mayhew developed the now iconic character's signature body language.

"When I was told that he could not communicate verbally I figured right, this is going to be a mime," he said.

"I have a very distinctive walk which gives the character his own characteristics."

He also dispels the misconception that he was responsible for Chewbacca's guttural roar.

"It wasn't me. It was a selection of bear and dog noises recorded at one of the zoos," he said.

"It was then taken back to the sound editing place, chopped up and put in."

He doesn't like breaking the news to fans though.

"People will try it, and sometimes you have to laugh," he said.

"They think it's great. It's one of those situations where you just say 'yes, that is good'.

"I haven't got the heart to tell them that it's almost impossible to do it."

The 2005 film Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith saw Mayhew reprise Chewbacca more than 20 years since he'd played the Wookiee in 1983's Return of the Jedi.

Even now, nearly 10 years since Revenge of the Sith, Mayhew said attending fan events, charity functions and answering fan mail is a full-time job.

"When you've got a character like this you've obviously got to concentrate on him and his reputation," he said.

"It's a full-time job. It's seven days a week."

But the 69-year-old certainly isn't complaining.

He's in the country for this week's Supanova Pop Culture Expo on the Gold Coast.

"It's my way of saying thank you to the fans. They've made me what I am."

Geek central

The Supanova Pop Culture Expo will be held at the Gold Coast Convention & Exhibition Centre from April 4-6.

Topics:  editors picks star wars



Where's the justice for the mother, daughter we lost?

WHAT NOW? Paul Wallis with his granddaughter Jade are left to pick up the pieces after the devastating loss of their daughter/mum. INSET: June Wallis in happier times.

Family of June Wallis devastated by killer's sentence

premium_icon Three men charged on separate historic sex crimes

Three men have been charged with separate historic sex offences by Towsville detectives; two of the victims in the cases were children at the time of the alleged offending.

Three historical cases of rape have come to light in Qld

Supercars ace Winterbottom blesses Dunga Derby vehicle

BLESSING OF THE VEHICLE: Supercars ace Mark Winterbottom signs the official 2018 Dunga Derby vehicle at the Beach House Hotel on Saturday.

It marks the start of the fundraising season.

Local Partners

Stone the flamin’ crows: Home and Away actor's new project

HE’S played the iconic Alf Stewart for 30 years — but now, Home and Away’s Ray Meagher is working on a new project.

Audience member shocked penis puppeteer

Rich Binning and Barry Brisco from Puppetry of the Penis.

It takes a lot to shock Rich Binning who appears nude on stage

What’s the greatest 1980s movie ever?

That lift, featuring Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey, back when she had a normal nose.

From Dirty Dancing and Crocodile Dundee to Die Hard

Jennifer Lawrence flaunts her nudity on set

Actress Jennifer Lawrence attends the premiere of "Red Sparrow" at the Newseum on Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018, in Washington. (Photo by Brent N. Clarke/Invision/AP)Source:AP

Jennifer Lawrence so comfortable on Red Sparrow set, she went naked

Bardot’s biggest secrets finally revealed

L-R: Belinda Chapple, Tiffany Wood, Sally Polihronas, Sophie Monk and Katie Underwood made up Bardot.

Popstars girl group Bardot’s biggest secrets finally revealed

How three Aussie movie-makers lured Helen Mirren

Jason Clarke and Helen Mirren in a scene from the movie Winchester. Supplied by Studiocanal.

It took a lot of work for three Aussies to lure the Oscar winner

Roxy Jacenko: ‘I came over all hot’

Roxy Jacenko and Oliver Curtis have talked about their sex life since his prison release last year. Picture: Aaron Francis.

The pair gave revealing interview about their lives since his release