When Jason Hutt was just 2 years old, his mother took him to see Star Wars at the movie theater. He sat in rapt silence throughout the entire film, and a lifelong obsession was born.
“There’s really never been a time in my life when I didn’t love Star Wars,” he says. “My mom loved space and science fiction; she cultivated that interest in me throughout my childhood, and Star Wars was really the center of it.”
As Hutt’s collection of Star Wars action figures (1,600 and counting) and memorabilia grew, he realized he needed a fun way to display it. His penchant for DIY projects led him to creating a massive and intricate diorama of the Mos Eisley cantina scene.
“The cantina scene has to be one of the most iconic in all of science fiction,” he says. “It’s where the adventure truly begins as the heroes meet for the first time and begin their epic journey.”
By day, Hutt works in NASA’s International Space Station Mission Control at Johnson Space Center, and is father to three young girls. It was by night, after his daughters went to bed, that his project took shape. Working for about an hour each evening, it took nearly four months to complete.
He started with sketches and lots of research and chose MDF to create the base and walls of the structure. From there, he had to get creative to find ways to replicate some of the details of the iconic scene. The bar posed the greatest design challenge.
“The bar was a mini-project in itself, as I used a combination of wood spheres, dollhouse pipes and accessories, some empty jars, and a half dozen other things,” Hutt recalls.
Now that his cantina diorama is complete, Hutt is beginning work on Jabba the Hutt’s Throne Room and also has plans to create an Endor bunker-fight diorama.