October 6, 2014 – Kenner received the licensing rights to make and distribute Star Wars toys in April, 1977 – only one month before the premiere of Star Wars (25 May 1977). As public demand for all things Star Wars-related exploded over the summer, Kenner found itself rushing to design and deliver product to the market.
Plastic Galaxy has produced a wonderful video documentary about Kenner and the early years of Star Wars merchandise production and collection. You can buy or rent the streaming video in HD for only $4.99.
You can watch a longer preview (13:24) below of the 70-minute documentary, which features interviews with numerous Star Wars collectors, authors, experts, and former Kenner designers. The DVD also includes more than 40 minutes of extras:
• The Art and Science of Kenner Prototypes
• Small Toys, Giant Disaster: The Star Wars Micro Line
• Steve Sansweet: The Secret Origin of a Record Setting Collector
• Know Your Toy Lightsaber!