Microkhan by Brendan I. Koerner

Watch for Falling Rocks

December 11th, 2009 · 2 Comments


We’re more than a little ashamed to admit we remember the brief Ewok craze of the mid-1980s, when two made-for-TV follow-ups to Return of the Jedi hit the tube. While we realize now that the Ewoks were a harbinger of the soul-crushing awfulness of Jar-Jar Binks, we were suckers for the furry critters back in the day. Yet even as wide-eyed fourth graders, we were disappointed with The Ewok Adventure and its Wilford Brimley-starring sequel, Ewoks: The Battle for Endor. The nine-year-old brain is surprisingly capable of sensing when an artist is just milking it.

Yet these movies represented the brief heyday for actor Eric Walker, who continues to live on the small glory he accrued in the role of Mace. In fact, he now appears to earn his living on the convention circuit—check out his website, the splash page of which features this unforgettable testament to the Ewoks’ mysterious allure:

Beyond the good vs evil narrative element, the human message within the Ewok films reminds us of the importance of virtue and the sacred principles of family. We see this in Mace’s brotherly love for his little sister Cindel Towani, (played by Aubree Miller), and their desperate search for their parents. And certainly in some way with each sci-fi convention appearance, Eric brings the nobility and charm of Mace Towani with him. Eric has embraced what has become an ongoing celebration and recognition of a lesser known but truly essential part of the Star Wars universe. And in doing that he brings a palpable excitement not lost in the shadows of things past, but of those things we hold so precious. Things like the dreams of our youth, the ever lasting mystery of imagination, the freedom to still dream, and the un-compromising depth of adventure.

The site’s convention pictures are highly, highly recommended.

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2 Comments so far ↓

  • jackal

    There are interesting stories to be written (if they already haven’t been), about the guest-actors, or minor recurring role actors on sci-fi shows that now make a living at conventions — notwithstanding Galaxyquest!

    I’ve looked at convention schedules in the past (having never been to one..) out of curiosity, and it’s kinda amazing how many random character actors are there to pad the schedules. At best, you get maybe a few of the bigshots or even regular cast members; then you have so-and-so who played the commander from blargon-IV on episode 35 of the original star trek or something..

    I wonder how sustainable it is to make a living off of this. I.e: try and land a random tiny role on a scifi series, hope it becomes a cult hit, and then make some money for decades to come going to conventions from LA to rapid city..

  • Brendan I. Koerner

    @jackal: After thoroughly perusing Mr. Walker’s site, I had the exact same thought. I guess it comes down to two things: 1) how many conventions can a character actor attend each year, and 2) how much do they earn for each appearance? I’d imagine there’s a sliding scale for fees, based on the character’s fame–I’d bet the farm that the dude who played Chewbacca gets a lot more cash than Walker.

    My hunch is that the conventions provide a tidy little income, but maybe not enough to live on. Then again, he does appear to have other sources of revenue–check out his autograph biz:

    http://ericwalker.net/autographs.htm

    He probably also gets some tidy residual checks for his role as “Volleyball Player” in the 1989 Tony Danza vehicle She’s Out of Control.

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