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May the Force be with him…

Eddie Gallen pictured beside a canvas of the actual Millennium Falcon his company worked on and in his hand, a slightly smaller model. DR44

A STRABANE resident says he will never forget the experience of building the most famous space ship in the universe.

Eddie Gallen, formerly of Lifford but now living in the town, worked for a number of weeks on the Millennium Falcon, during last year’s shooting for the Last Jedi at Malin Head.

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A scaffolding expert by trade, Eddie and his Northface Access Scaffolding team built the Falcon on one of Malin’s rocky cliff edges.

“Until we saw it finished we only knew then what it was, because everything was done piece by piece,” he explained.

“When the decorators finally came in and did the decorations and added on the different little gadgets, simple wee things, it turned into the space ship overnight.”

Eddie was one of those who received a special invite to the first showing of The Last Jedi last week at Century Cinemas in Letterkenny. The guests were treated to champagne and canapes, courtesy of Donegal County Council, before settling down for their own private showing. And before the movie started, Luke Skywalker himself, Mark Hamill had a message for Eddie and all those who helped bring the film to the big screen.

“I can’t wait to come back to a country that made me feel like a member of the family,” he said.

Eddie Gallen and his team took four weeks to build a replica of the Millennium Falcon on Malin Head last year.

“So may the force be with you all and pour a pint of Guinness for me, will you.”
Eddie, who also worked on the Red Bull World Diving Series building the diving boards at Inis Mor Island at the famous ‘Worm Hole’, continued, “How the Falcon came about was, a good friend of mine, Mike O’Shea from Work at Height put me in contact with the artistic director and construction manager and it went from there.

“It was a substantial amount of work.

“It took us about four weeks; it was a bit hectic at times, like an amazing jigsaw puzzle. But seeing it all come together was really enjoyable. It was great for the north west and the Wild Atlantic Way.”

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The Strabane Chronicle is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
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