Culture

Step into the Star Wars Identities exhibition

These really are the unique movie props, costumes, models and concept artwork you're looking for.

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

The Force is with you -- but do you choose the dark side or the light side? That's the choice facing you when you create your own Star Wars character at Star Wars Identities, an exhibition packed with more than 200 original props, models, costumes and concept artwork from the classic film series.

Having previously appeared in Canada and France, a selection of the coolest items from George Lucas' archives are on show at London's O2 until September 2017. Check out our photos for a sneak peek at the exhibition and the 200 original items used in the making of the movies.

The exhibits are collected from the original and prequel trilogies with a couple of trinkets from the newer movie "The Force Awakens" thrown in. Displays include the actual costumes worn by Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill, not to mention the costumes, helmets and uniforms of Boba Fett, C-3PO and Darth Vader. And you get to see cute droids R2-D2 and BB-8 side-by-side.

We spoke to Laela French from the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art, home of the Star Wars archive, about what it takes to bring together these pieces from a galaxy far, far away.

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The exhibition also gives you an insight into the development of the movie with concept artwork and models tracing the evolution of the characters and storylines, created by artists and designers such as Ralph McQuarrie and Joe Johnston who defined the look of the Star Wars universe.

If you look closely, you'll spot details you may not have noticed before such as Jabba the Hutt's tattoo. And you might learn new details -- like the fact Luke Skywalker was going to be a woman at one point, or that the opening wings of an X-Wing fighter were inspired by western heroes drawing their guns.

Identities brings you into the Star Wars universe by allowing you to create and name your own character. The exhibition explores the different factors that affect how we grow and live our lives by looking at different characters in the saga, then asking you to make choices about how your character lives. You record your choices by tapping an RFID bracelet against wall displays, then at the end your character's story is emailed to you to keep.

Star Wars Identities is open seven days a week until 3 September 2017. Tickets cost £20 for adults or £25 at weekend or holiday peak times, with children's tickets costing £15 or £18. Concessions and family tickets are also available, while children under five go free. Tickets are on sale now.

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