Hundreds of Star Wars fans queued to see the seventh instalment in the franchise at Odeon Chatham in the very early hours of this morning.
As they entered the cinema, for the 12.01am screening, they could choose whether to enter through the light or dark side, before being greeted by Stormtroopers, Darth Vader and Yoda.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens will see another enemy rise from the Empire’s ashes and a new set of heroes will have to reunite with Luke, Han and Leia to fight for the freedom of the galaxy.
Cinema general manager Natalie Fisher, speaking before the screening, said: “We can’t wait to see guests excited as they choose to enter the cinema through the Light Side or Dark Side.
“A wonderful part of the Star Wars story is the commitment and fan following the franchise has gathered over the years. All of us here at Odeon Chatham can’t wait to join in guests’ anticipation and enthusiasm, by transporting them to The Galaxy even before they enter the screen.”
Nick Walker of Rochester Kino, the Messenger film expert, has promised his niece he will go and see the movie with her over Christmas.
“A long time ago in a galaxy far, far, away there once was a science fiction franchise comprised of movies, books, comics, video games, toys, and animated shows, it was a fictional universe created by George Lucas,” he said.
“The Star Wars story employs archetypal motifs common to science fiction, political climax and classical mythology and is brim full of the latest technology.
The first movie is remarkably similarity to the Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa’s ‘The Hidden Fortress’ is enough to feel it is an homage to that movie. The impact has been so successful it has been selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry.
“The odd thing about all this is the first three films turned out to actually be numbers four, five and six and the subsequent last three films to be one, two and three in the franchise.
“Star Wars: The Force awakens arrives now, epic and spectacular with the original cast to satisfy the demand for its fans to attend in droves.”
The film is expected to break box office records and draw huge audiences to cinemas over the Christmas holidays.