SWNZ (Star Wars New Zealand) is a website and community, built by New Zealanders, for New Zealanders.
The principal goal is to support and encourage all Star Wars related hobbies in NZ, and to tie together the networks that constitute the wider Star Wars fan base. SWNZ focuses on New Zealand content, but has international appeal in that it highlights the unique contribution made by New Zealand and New Zealanders to the Star Wars Universe, and will chronicle regional events and collectibles not available elsewhere.
SWNZ is about enjoying the hype of the new Star Wars films and television/streaming series, and about celebrating the nostalgia of the original and prequel trilogies.
Matt G :: (SWNZ owner and administrator). I first saw Star Wars in 1977, at the Odeon Theatre in Tauranga, and pretty much started pretending to be an Imperial Stormtrooper from that time. My Star Wars collection largely began in 1978 comprising at that time the paperback novelisation of the film, a stormtrooper mini-action figure, issue 18 of the Marvel Star Wars comic series (I soon started hunting down back issues), and growing piles of Allens & Regina bubblegum cards and Tip Top Ice Cream R2 Space Ice collectible stickers. I still have all of those items, and have picked up one or two more along the way.
(Contact Matt via the website contact form).
Anaria :: Aware of the Star Wars franchise when I was young, my first time watching any of the films was in 2002, when I saw Episode 2 on opening day. Curious to see what hype was about, I had no idea how my life would change by the time the credits rolled. Just days later I had purchased my first action figure, soon surrounded by hundreds more. In 2003 while searching ebay for more Star Wars collectibles, I found a custom made wool Jedi robe – I quickly purchased it, marking the start of my costuming journey (my costuming website). It lead to meeting my husband – getting engaged at a Star Wars filming location, to honeymooning at a Celebration convention – my passion for Star Wars continues to grow.
As my first experience of Star Wars was seeing the Jedi in their prime, together with Padme’ Amidala’s gorgeous wardrobe, my areas of interest tend to be in the Clone Wars and Prequel era. Many play-throughs of Knights of the Old Republic created a love of the Old Republic era – including the comics, books, and of course Star Wars: The Old Republic MMO video game. Many of my favourite characters and stories come from the Expanded Universe, which adds a lot of outfits to my costuming wish list, on top of those from the films!
Archon Revuge :: I first saw the original Star Wars film on a tiny 14-inch screen back in 1996. It was love at first sight. Later that week I used my entire savings (along with a generous top-up contribution from my parents) to buy my first ever Star Wars collectible: An Action Fleet Darth Vader’s TIE Fighter. Over the following months I added more vehicles to my collection and that Christmas I received my first handful of 3 3/4″ figures. The following year the Special Editions arrived, giving me my first chance to see Star Wars on the big screen. My fascination had gone from hobby to full-blown obsession by the time the prequels came around. Little has changed since then.
In addition to writing for SWNZ, I also blog about my Star Wars collecting adventures over at relicsoftheforce.blogspot.com. I always love hearing from other fans of the saga, so don’t hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your comments and questions. You can follow me on Twitter too!