Vader Boy invasion
THE PEPPER MILL - Pepper Teehankee (The Philippine Star) - June 27, 2014 - 12:00am

The year 2014 marks the 37th anniversary of the first Star Wars film. What started as a small project by George Lucas back in the ‘70s has become a hit movie series that has left an incredible mark in the world’s pop culture. Books, toys, movie props and even conventions have been created in order to keep the spirit of “force” alive.

Recently, Secret Fresh, a leading artist vinyl toy shop in the Philippines, launched Vader Boy (based on Star Wars character Darth Vader), marking the gallery’s second Star Wars-related collaboration with Imagine Nation Studios (INS). The new collection was conceptualized right after wrapping up Trooper Boy (based on the film’s Stormtrooper character) last year. The Vader Boy toy, armed with a mini-lightsaber, control chestplate and a cape to complete its look, is a representation of a kid’s playful imagination of someday ruling the galaxy far, far away.

During the launch, various activities took place, which included Vaderheads exhibition by various artists, film showing of Star Wars and other documentary movies, live-art painting session and a special participation of the 501st Legion Philippine Outpost.

The Vader Boy figure measures 14 inches. It is produced in 30 limited pieces for the regular version and five pieces for the one-of-a-kind exclusive version that are limited to five pieces only. Do-it-yourself Vaderheads were made available during the event for those who wanted their Vaderheads customized.

Also held at the launch was a special silent auction of one Vader Boy toy for the benefit of White Cross Children’s Home.

Fifty artists were invited to design their own take on the Vaderheads D.I.Y. These included Lawrence Aliwalas of INS, John Eugene Atendido Avila, Melbourne Aquino, Arnold Austria of Jagnus Design Studio, Darrel Ballesteros, Bato, Bjorn Calleja, Chill, Jigger Cruz, JP Cuison, Mariano Ching, Bembol dela Cruz, Maria Delfino, Beejay Esber, James Esguerra, Everywhere We Shoot, Fa Bo, Egg Fiasco, Maurice Gaerlan, Sarah Gaugler, Gori, Karl Gustav, Bree Jonson, Jood, Potti Lesaguis, Miko and Jolo Livelo of Punchkick, Dino Lopez, Gene Paul Martin, Jason Montinola, Nemo, Leeroy New, Epjay Pacheco, Milch Pe of INS, Mark Perez, Quiccs, Ranelle Rain, Isabel, Luis and Soler Santos, Nikko “PissvoidGSM” Samson, Ice See, Sonny Sunga of Jagnus Design Studio, Tawnie Tantay, Mimi Tecson, Tripp63, Sydney Valdez, Wesley Valenzuela, Michael Villagante, Whoop, Bryan Yabut, JJ Zamoranos and Cos Zicarelli, whose Vaderhead I bought to complement the Trooperhead I bought, which was made by Chill.

Imagine Nation Studios, proudly based in the Philippines, is a group of professional artists focusing on creating pieces of sculpture and other forms of 3D art. Headed by Lawrence Aliwalas and Milch Pe, INS believes that art shouldn’t solely be expressed through canvas or illustrations but should also be interpreted through three-dimensional representations. Started in 2008, INS has already worked and collaborated with various artists, studios, advertising agencies, film production houses, musicians and various companies. The group — aside from making life-size pieces of sculpture, designer and art toys, furniture, prosthetics and movie props — is also fast becoming known as a trophy manufacturer with premium quality.

Secret Fresh is set to feature its next limited edition toy by Jason Montinola on Sunday, June 29.

(Secret Fresh is located at G/F, Ronac Art Center, Ortigas Avenue, Greenhills, San Juan City. Visit

A dream in the skies

Frequent travelers are always in search of a passenger-centered airplane. Here’s the good news: Thai Airways International Public Company Limited (THAI) reveals the first newly painted Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner in THAI livery.

The first THAI Dreamliner was rolled out recently at the tarmac of Boeing’s Everett Plant in Washington. The 787-8 Dreamliner is designed for a significantly better passenger experience — from seat design to material selection, to cushion comfort, legroom, washroom convenience, to dynamic LED lighting and the 65 percent expanded views from the windows.

This first aircraft has been given the name Ongkharak and carries the aircraft registration number HS-TQA. The 787-8 aircraft is equipped with the next-generation Rolls-Royce Trent 1000-A engines. The culmination of advanced aerodynamics and lightweight structures contribute to 20 percent reduction in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions, as well as less “roar” around airport boundaries and airport communities.

The Dreamliner’s interior is based on the contemporary Thai design concept, with 264 seats in a two-class cabin. Each of the 24 Royal Silk Class seats is fitted with a 60-inch pitch and 21-inch seat width, and can recline to a 78-inch-long bed in full-flat, 180-degree position. The seats are shell-typed with a partition screen between seats, and arranged in a 2-2-2 abreast configuration allowing for privacy and easy access to the aisles. The Audio Video On Demand state-of-the-art in-flight entertainment (eX3) provides for a wide selection of movies, games, music, TV programs and digital reading of news and travel information on the 16-inch personal screen.

The Dreamliner 240 Economy Class seats are designed in vivid gold and purple and arranged in a 3-3-3 abreast configuration. Each seat has a 32-inch seat pitch and an 18-inch width, and individual eX3 in-flight entertainment system (AVOD) on the 11-inch personal screen.

Between July 2014 and June 2015, THAI will receive six Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner aircraft in its fleet.

(Follow me on Instagram @pepperteehankee.)


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