In the Lone Star Wars State

Texas Spirit Theater | NR | 90 min. | Documentary

May 4, 2024 10:00am - 2:00pm

Celebrate Star Wars Day at the Bullock.

Event Details

Join us for a special program in celebration of all things Star Wars. Enjoy special demonstrations and hands-on activities including intergalactic-themed craft stations for adults and kids of all ages.

Snap a photo with a member of the Kar'ta Beskar Mando Mercs or Saber Guild — Jakku Temple. Join Girlstart for an interactive Star Wars STEM demo and hands-on activities for kids of all ages. Interact with Jaime McShan with R2-D2 from the Central Texas Droids and Jesse Maricelli with C3-PO from the Houston Area Droid Builders Club. Don't miss some iconic toys and memorabilia from the Texas Toy Museum. Create your own Lightsaber and Yoda ears at the family craft station.

From 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. join an exclusive screening of the documentary In the Lone Star Wars State, which promises an unforgettable experience for all attendees. As the saying goes, everything is bigger in Texas, and Star Wars is no exception. This film is a love letter to all the Star Wars fan(atics) we know and love. Alejandro Cabrera, San Antonio Producer/Director, takes us on a fascinating journey, delving deep into the Star Wars fandom in Texas and exploring its unique connection to the Western genre. This epic inspiring story introduces us to several Texans, sharing their personal experiences and intimate stories of fandom. You’ll feel like you’re part of the Star Wars universe, right here in the heart of Texas.

From 1 – 1:30 p.m. stay after the screening for a Q&A with filmmaker Alejandro Cabrera and a panel of guest speakers featured in the film.

Activities are free with exhibit admission, and tickets to the film are $8 for Bullock Museum Members and $12 for general admission. Not a member? Find out more here.

Seating begins at 11 a.m. for the 11:30 a.m. screening. All seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Concessions from The Star Cafe and IMAX® Theatre will be allowed in the theater.

Film Credits

Rating: NR
Director: Alejandro Cabrera
Runtime: 90 minutes
Genre: Documentary
Release Year: 2023

About the Filmmaker

Alejandro Cabrera (Director, Producer, Editor) moved from San Juan, Puerto Rico to San Antonio, Texas in 2001 at the age of twelve. His mother opened her dental practice in the town of Helotes, Texas and he and his family continue to live here. Since childhood, Alejandro has had a passion and fascination with films. He studied journalism in San Antonio and worked in broadcasting. Given his love and passion for strong and intimate human interest stories, he decided to venture out on his own and pursue documentary filmmaking. In 2014, he released his first documentary short titled Heart of a Fighter. The film focused on the local, amateur, and mixed martial arts scene in San Antonio. The second documentary short was titled Guardians of the Hallway and it focused on an anti-bullying program at Lady Bird Johnson High School in San Antonio. His first feature length documentary came out in 2015, titled Syfytonians. The documentary focused on the comic book fan subculture in San Antonio and tells the story of how such culture helped launch Alamo City Comic Con. That same year, inspired by the global madness and massive anticipation of the release of Star Wars: Episode VII-The Force Awakens, Alejandro decided to embark on a new journey by capturing this historical and unique moment in Star Wars fandom. Little did he know that his work on In The Lone Star Wars State would turn into an eight-year commitment to the documentary and grant him the rare chance to meet and film with Star Wars fans from Austin, Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio.

About the Panelists

Chris Kelley has been in love with Star Wars since he first saw Episode IV at age seven. He instinctively kept the packaging from the toys he was always begging to own. Over the years, he has collected everything from popular 3 3/4 inch Kenner action figures. His collection is so big that in 2005 Chris and his family had to relocate from the two-story home in the suburbs of Austin, Texas to a ranch home in Dripping Springs, Texas to accommodate his million-dollar Star Wars Treasures. His massive collection is the thing of any Star Wars fan's dreams to the point that it needs three massive rooms to house them. Some pieces from his collection have been on display at the Bob Bullock Museum in Austin. But his love of Star Wars goes beyond the films and the toys. He has four children, the youngest of which is named Lucas McQuarrie after the director (George Lucas) and concept artist (Ralph McQuarrie).

Jesse Maricelli is a licensed electrical engineer and is working in operational leadership for an engineering company in the oil and gas industry of Houston, TX. He is also an Army veteran. He participated in the university level IEEE robotics competition during his studies at U of H where he began to be interested in robotics. Although his day job does not deal with robotics, he keeps his interests alive with Star Wars droid building projects. Jesse is a member of the Houston Area Droid Builders Club, but his designs have been reproduced throughout the world. Most recently, Jesse completed a design for a fully animatronic, life-sized C-3PO. His work included 3D modeling of the entire suit using a 3D scan of a highly accurate reference as a starting point. Jesse then developed a mechanical design for a robotic skeleton that the suit would be placed on top of. The result is a life-like animatronic with 22 separate degrees of motion. The C-3PO project took over 4 years to go from an idea to a finished project. Over the past 8 years, Jesse has also built an R2-D2, BB-8, and MSE droid. Jesse is currently in development for a new droid project that will show case hydraulics and pneumatics. He is excited to add these skill sets to his experience base and to help others learn with him as he works on new projects.

The Force is with Heather Trupia, and for the last seven years, it’s been with her students at Camino Real Elementary School too. An educator for more than 20 years, Trupia brought her love for the Star Wars franchise to the Hays CISD school in Niederwald, Texas, about 25 miles south of Austin. Trupia started her tenure as a teacher at Camino Real in 2012. A couple of years later, she joined her husband Paul in the Saber Guild (Jakku Temple), a lightsaber choreography group based in Austin.

Lance Hathaway works as a Site Safety Manager for an industrial scaffold company in one of the many Southeast Texas area refineries. In May of 1980, Lance saw Empire Strikes Back and his fandom went to a new level. In his spare time, Lance enjoys creating and building. So much of his creativity has been inspired by Star Wars. He didn’t realize and embrace his artistic side until early 1999, just before the release of The Phantom Menace, when he attempted to build a replica of himself “Frozen in Carbonite” out of plaster and fiberglass. But nothing compares to his latest creation. His fully operational home theater/game room is inspired by the Death Star in Star Wars. It took a little over 4 years to complete due to his house flooding by storms, Harvey in 2017 and Imelda in 2019 making him start the process over twice. Lance states that it was a learning experience to build and a great room to watch movies and hang out in. The state-of-the-art room incorporates some of his favorite elements that he enjoyed as a child of the 70s and 80s. Star Wars and arcade games were a large portion of his enjoyable memories.

About Public Programs

Public programs at the Bullock Museum explore relevant history and celebrate the culture that has shaped our modern world. Through engaging discussions, performances, and scholarship visitors are invited to see local connections and discover how Texas fits into a broader national story.

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The Bullock Museum, a division of the Texas State Preservation Board, is funded by Museum members, donors, and patrons, the Texas State History Museum Foundation, and the State of Texas.