If you’re in the New York area and looking to embrace the Jedi (or Sith) inside you, the Empire Saber Guild could be the group you’re looking for to do just that. Even if you’re not a local, the Empire Saber Guild has done various charitable acts that could inspire you to do the same this coming holiday season. I recently sat down with Rubin Polizzi, the local director of the Empire Saber Guild–an international Star Wars lightsaber performance and costuming organization.
One of the things I love about Saber Guild is the fact that it is a not-for-profit . . . We are costumed performance charity groups and it really is great to do something that’s different from everything else, that’s something you love and share it with other people.
– Rubin Polizzi
In the first part of our interview over at Making Star Wars, Rubin talked about the group in depth, providing a closer look at what the Empire Temple has to offer. In part two of our interview, we briefly shift over to current Star Wars projects, including Star Wars Rebels and Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
JM: How excited are you about Episode VII?
RP: I’m bordering on being really excited and trying not to be too excited because I don’t want to get my hopes up. I’m in film, so I look at it from a non-fanboy’s perspective . . . I really like the Expanded Universe, so I was kind of bummed . . . but from a filmmaker’s perspective, how can you be brought into a situation and say, “Create, but you have to create based on what’s already created.” And to me, if they had done that, it would have been a disservice not only to the franchise but to J.J. [Abrams] . . . So, I’m trying to keep it from the perspective of “I can’t wait to see what they’ll create next.”
JM: I know what you mean!
RP: Yeah, like I went to [see] Avengers, saying, “This is going to be a good movie.” I didn’t expect it to be an awesome movie! Or like Captain America 2.
JM: That was a phenomenal movie!
RP: I went in and thought, “If this is as good Captain America, I’ll be happy.” And it was better than Avengers. So, I’m trying to see it along the lines of, “I know Star Wars: Episode VII is going to be a good movie,” and that’s how I’m going to go into it. It’s going to be a good movie, and I’m going to see it seven times when it comes out!
JM: Yes, of course, same here! And are you by any chance watching Star Wars Rebels?
RP: Yeah, I am. It’s growing on me. The only thing you can compare it to would be Clone Wars. In my opinion, it’s better than when The Clone Wars first started. If you look at the first season of The Clone Wars and the first couple of episodes of Rebels, Rebels has the advantage. I feel that Rebels knows what it is already. Clone Wars had to find out what it was. I’m enjoying it.
The Ezra character, I thought was going to be an annoying little kid, I don’t think he is. They did a good job with that. I think Chopper, as much as everybody thought it was going to be an R2-D2 ripoff, I thought was a very good individual character that added an old school element of always having a droid with its own personality. The character I thought I was going to have the biggest issue with is Sabine . . . but I see the audience they’re playing to and I get it. There’s an audience that needs to be addressed—the younger female audience.
RP: I feel like it is a niche that needs to be filled, and it’s still not for me. But hey, if I get a legion of young teenage Mandos running around, I’m all for it.
JM: There are already! There are so many people who cosplay as Sabine. They just love her.
RP: It’s great! I’m all for that. If you give me a character that I may not like but everybody else does, I’ll take it because you appeal to the audience. And again, coming from a TV background, I know how these things work. We need to hit an audience because it is a business . . . If you’re going to make a character within an age range that’s cool, I’ll buy it. I was very happy with the way Sabine turned out.
JM: Thanks so much, Rubin. The Empire Saber Guild is such an awesome group.
The Empire Saber Guild holds open rehearsals every Friday at the DANY Studios from 6:00pm to 8:00pm. If you’re in the area, go check them out and put your lightsaber skills to the test. Read more about the open rehearsals over at Making Star Wars.
Visit their main site to check out what shows and events they’ve done in the past, show your support by following them on social media, and check out the video below to see how they share their love of Star Wars with the rest of the community: