What’s this? Star Wars reimagined as a 1980s cartoon? There’s zero dialogue in the seven minute short film, but you know exactly what’s going on. Do we count the noise a probe droid makes as dialogue?

TIE Fighter, from Star Wars fan Paul Johnson, is one hell of a cover letter for his resume. Disney should just cut him a check now, and tell him we want that on both the Disney channel and on the big screen. Here’s a team, make it happen.

The short film follows a squadron of TIE fighters as they prep to meet the Rebel Alliance in close quarters dogfights. No one is barking orders, so we don’t have to worry about Red 5 yammering over comms.

TIE Fighter

tie fighter film

An interesting take on the short film is if you’ve never seen or heard of Star Wars, you would have no idea if these were the bad guys. Sure, the color palette feels evil and the commander looks like he’s being groomed for the Nazi SS, but the music and the feel of the pilots make it seem like they are just going out on a mission.

tie fighter short film

It’s a perspective shift, and a damn cool one.

The style is all 80s. I grew up watching GI Joe, Transformers and a variety of cartoons. This is more anime than those, but the feel of the film reminded me of my favorite childhood shows.

The music in the background is by guitarist Zak Rahman, and the sound effects are borrowed from the old TIE fighter videogames. I’m looking at you EA to resurrect some space combat.

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