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STAR WARS Takes Over the Empire State Building

The Force is strong.

Disney and Lucasfilm banded together for a STAR WARS takeover at the world-famous Empire State Building on March 21. The epic ode to the franchise’s villains began that morning with a celebrity visit from STAR WARS actor Hayden Christensen, an unveiling of the Vader-themed Fifth Avenue Lobby windows, the debut of displays by Funko POP! and LEGO throughout the Observatory Experience, and an immersive fan experience by Hasbro and Amazon. The festivities culminated with a dynamic STAR WARS light show.

Learn more about the villain invasion below!

The Dark Side in Lights

ESB debuted a one-of-a-kind STAR WARS montage in lights that celebrated the fan-favorite scenes of the franchise’s villains on the building’s south side façade that evening. The galactic spectacular – that continued in intervals from 8-11 p.m. – was synched to a broadcast of the iconic “Imperial March” on iHeartRadio’s Z100.

Empire State Building Star Wars Lights

STAR WARS actor Hayden Christensen joined Darth Vader and two storm troopers at the Empire State Building that morning to flip the famous light switch. After the ceremony, he toured the Observatory Experience – which was voted the #1 attraction in the U.S. in Tripadvisor’s 2023 Travelers’ Choice “Best of the Best” for two consecutive years – and posed for photos with the STAR WARS themed exhibits throughout the experience.

Top-To-Bottom Takeover

Star Wars Display at Empire State Building

To start off the day, the Empire State Building unveiled its iconic Fifth Avenue Lobby windows, which feature artistic depictions of Darth Vader, Darth Maul, and stormtroopers surrounded by new STAR WARS merchandise.

Hasbro and Amazon teamed up for a STAR WARS fan experience at the base of the building that highlights the villains of the STAR WARS galaxy and features photo opportunities with costumed characters and photo backdrops that recreate iconic scenes and locations inspired by the films. Guests can also pose in the blister card packaging of a STAR WARS Vintage Collection figure and check out the latest Hasbro Black Series helmets and FX Elite and Kyber Core Lightsabers.

The building’s 80th Floor featured a museum-quality display of life-sized Darth Vader and Darth Maul brick builds and a 3D mural of Luke Skywalker and other fan-favorite characters from the film series to celebrate 25 years of the LEGO STAR WARS collaboration. 

Funko POP! Darth Vader

On the 86th Floor Observatory, fans can pose for a photo with a life-size Funko POP! Darth Vader with ESB’s unmatched New York City views as a backdrop until April 29. Dairy Farmers of America and their flavored milk brand, TruMoo, brought samples of their new blue milk for Observatory guests.

"The Empire Strikes Back”

To round out the takeover, the Empire State Building will host a movie screening of STAR WARS: The Empire Strikes Back on the 80th Floor on March 22. Movie ticketholders will also receive complimentary drinks and snacks to enjoy with the movie and access to the 86th and 102nd Floor Observatories.

Text CONNECT to 274-16 to receive real-time information about the Empire State Building’s tower lights.

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