These Kenner Star Wars Factory Photos Are Strong With The Force!

The first thing we should all do is doff our hats in Flickr user Darth Ray’s direction for sharing these fantastic black and white behind the scenes photos of what are mostly factory floor shots from the Kenner Factory back in the heyday of the Star Wars toy craze.

Image courtesy of Darth Ray on

Image courtesy of Darth Ray on

Image courtesy of Darth Ray over at Flickr.Com

Image courtesy of Darth Ray over at Flickr.Com

Notice that the previous picture of the two boys playing with the Death Star was used on the box art. I also love the fact that this woman is seriously giving Darth Vader the once over…was she wondering if the toy was suitable for some child she knew or her own collection? We will sadly never know.

Image courtesy of Darth Ray over at Flickr.Com

Image courtesy of Darth Ray over at Flickr.Com

“She may not look like much, but she’s got it where it counts, kid. I’ve made a lot of special modifications myself.”

Image courtesy of Darth Ray over at Flickr.Com

Image courtesy of Darth Ray over at Flickr.Com

Darth Ray also makes note on his Flickr account that these photos and the rest on his page originally came from


Editor at Retroist
Searching through the alleys for useful knowledge in the city of Nostalgia. Huge cinema fanatic and sometimes carrier of the flame for the weirding ways of 80s gaming, toys, and television. When his wife lets him he is quite happy sitting in the corner eating buckets of beef jerky.

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11 thoughts on “These Kenner Star Wars Factory Photos Are Strong With The Force!

  1. Atari Adventure Square says:

    Something about seeing stacks of Kenner’s Star Wars toys puts me on a cloud of wonder.

    That toyline gave us kids the opportunity for the greatest manifestations of spontaneous imagination.

    We all rewrote SW history, sequel’ed ’em, prequel’ed ’em, expanded into as many avenues as there were 3 1/4-inch-high figurines molded out by copycats and higher standard companies.

    I tell ya, I could go on about these classy black-and-silver boxes alone, how they sat regally on display in stores, how obtaining a non-holiday-timezone item was like gaining exotic treasure.

    Who could resist getting them out of the bag to look at the images, the pictured (not drawn) setting?
    In my case, it was more the figures gained that, despite the urge to put ’em in play, stayed carded for a bit longer, as if the plastic casing sealed the Force itself in that inner space.

    I kept the movie stills used for these figures and ultimately cropped ’em to fit each personalized cubicle of my Star Wars Carry Case.
    I still have it.

    I think I’d go more nuts for these Kenner boxes than the content, nowadays.

  2. Atari, you are so right about the boxes. That starry background with the gleaming silver band around the edges and the solid colored center ? Wonderment!

  3. I will agree with the esteemed Patrick J. Doody on Atari’s statement! I’ll go ahead and ask what, what was everyone’s favorite Star Wars toy?

  4. Vic, mine was my Landspeeder. The fact you could put R2 and 3Po on the back was super cool.

    Plus, I liked to hide weapons under the hood. And it looked like it was actually floating! It was first Star Wars Toy. I wish I still had it.

    My second favorite was the Star Destroyer – yes, I lived a charmed life as a child. Man, that thing was freaking rad. The best part? The trapdoor.

    I might have to do a post on it!

  5. plcary says:

    My favorite Star Wars toy was actually the Star Wars electronic laser battle game. I tradedmy cousin a magic tricks set for it.

  6. Vic, I agree with Patrick that the Land Speeder always holds a special place for me. It was one of the first items I got. I remember how the front hood opened up, but eventually snapped off and had to be taped back on. I also loved my X-Wing Fighter, but still remember when I got my Snow Speeder for Christmas and that became an instant favorite. It seems the ships/vehicles were my most cherished.

    I also remember getting Boba Fett who was not sold in stores. You had to send in for him and many of my friends did not have him. Such awesome memories!

  7. Oooh, @OldSchool80s! You were one of the lucky few to get the mail away Boba Fett, that is awesome!

    My favorite vehicle is the one I didn’t actually own. The Snow Speeder. I had friends later in life that owned one so I always made sure to kind of sit for a few minutes and fly the Speeder around the room when I visited. :)

  8. That vader the woman is holding reminds me of the r2d2 & c3po toys I bought when i was 5, they were the same scale (probably from the same set as that vader).

  9. Atari Adventure Square says:

    Of course as a Star Wars kid, I had fun with every single Kenner output I could get my hands on.
    The Land Speeder was possibly the most magical, for all the reasons Patrick mentioned.
    I mean, the floating effect on that thing was more effective than the rough cut of the Tattooine scenes we got a glimpse of, in some of the rare deleted tidbits from the Lucasfilms vault.

    But I gotta give credit to the two toys that brought a special brand of interactive movie-making fun:
    The Star Wars Cantina
    and The Die-Cast Millenium Falcon.

    The Cantina set had nothing going for it, really.
    Just a bar set, a plastic swivel thing on its base (for swooping light-sabered falling) and a cardboard backdrop.
    Oh and the base had those handy little pegs that kept the figures in place (always appreciated those).
    But, once my teenage years advanced into Advanced D&D, I sold most of these unplayed toys to get the many books needed for further excursions into the mind.

    But I kept the backdrop.

    Found it a few years ago and stashed it for safekeeping.
    Now, I can frame it on my wall, like a miniaturized Matte, and let the Force of its memories propel me into hyperspace..back in time.

    And the die-cast Falcon, well…how could you not feel more like a space pilot with a handily portable ship you could swish between branches and hide in your pocket between Kessel runs?

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