One of the great things about working for the Dork Side of the Force is the ability to interview actors from the world of Star Wars. I was able to get into contact with Laurie Goode, the actor that “head banged” his way into our permanent blooper reel. If you haven’t seen it, I supplied the link at the bottom. Most of the crew was able to supply their questions as well.
The crew at Dork Side are thankful that you would take your time in doing this; please feel free to detail as you like.
Take us from A-Z how did the “head-bang” happen?
Laurie: As I’ve said many times before, I’m not the only one who has stated they banged their heads. And I wouldn’t make a 100% claim without proof, but having said that, I don’t know how others can make a claim without having any proof. All I can tell you is what has happened at the time and the experiences that have occurred since. On the day, I banged my head (which was on the same set where the incident occurred) I had an upset stomach. I kept going to the loo and, at one point, I had just returned from the toilets when I was put in (the) shot. Having rehearsed the scene, we went for a take. I was ambling along, and felt I needed to rush back to the loo – and bang, I hit my head! No one shouted, “cut”, so I assumed the shot wasn’t wide enough to include me.
Now, I’ve been telling this story since we did the filming back in 1976, and when mentioned it now, people say to me, that’s what so-and-so said happened to him. So, I have people repeating my stories, which I’ve been saying for years. I’m not going to name names, but I’ve counted six people who claim they are the Stormtrooper who hit his head, now ask yourself this; six Stormtroopers have hit their heads, and not one of them has been told off! Surely, if they were all happened at different times, then someone would have been shouted at for the blunder. So, it’s obvious to me; all are referring to the same incident as me. My only secret weapon is, is that I know what stage where it occurred, and I have the date written in my diary. If I’m ever able to match it up with the filming that took place that day, then I would have a positive claim.
When did you realize you wanted to be an actor?
Laurie: At school. We had a teacher, who was an amtram man, and allowed us to put on short plays for classmates” Have you stayed in contact with any of the actors in Star Wars? Answer: Yes, I’m still in touch with some. Derek Lyons, Pam Rose, Mark Kirby, Chris Bunn.
If you could be any other character in the Star Wars franchise, who would you be?
Laurie: I think I’d make up my own character.
Which Star Wars movie is your favorite and what is your favorite movie of all-time?
Laurie: A New Hope. The Good the Bad and the Ugly.
Do you think the Emperor should spend a little more money and have the Stormtroopers go to weapon school, or was the Death Star just overly financed?
Laurie: We could always do with a bit more money – Star Wars has made ££££££$$$ zillions!
What do you do for a hobby?
Laurie: Jog and sleep!
Are you excited to see The Force Awakens or it will be something you watch when you have the time?
Laurie: I think I’ll go out of my way to see this one.
Who were your closest friends when on set?
Laurie: Those I used to go to the bar with at lunchtime! There were many I used to meet on set, which I socialized with.
How much did that suit protect your head, did you need an Advil after?
Laurie: Bits kept falling off – it was quite brittle.
Why do you think the stormtroopers are so expendable/bad shots?
Laurie: Maybe it’s those helmets – they can’t see!
Did Fox pay for your concussion treatment?
Laurie: I never thought of that.
How comfy was the early trooper costume, how long did it take to fit, how many were made?
Laurie: Well, I had to take off to go to the bar lunchtime.
We’re you only in that shot or did we see you again.
Laurie: Yes. I was in other shots. I was also one of the Saurians in the Cantina scene.
Do you still tell people that it was you who hit their head?
Laurie: I tell people I’m one of many who say they hit their heads. Was I the Stormtrooper who hit his head in the shot? I tell my story and let others decide.
Did you feel like something special was being made or was it just another role for you, how was the atmosphere on set?
Laurie: This is it. As the costumes kept falling apart, and the cast is not being very well known, apart from Alec Guinness, you didn’t see it as anything special. Also with Christopher Lee being a cast member, you wondered if it was going to be a horror film.
What was your trooper ID number?
Laurie: None applicable – retired.
How easy were the outfits to take off if you had to take a pee?
Laurie: I had to take it off to do big jobs! Very awkward!
Did the troopers make “pew pew” noises when filming fight scenes like when Ewan McGregor did in the prequel trilogies when he filmed his Lightsaber scenes?
Laurie: I think you will find they were dubbed on after the filming.
Make sure you follow Laurie Goode on twitter: @LaurieGoode