We Finally Know Why That Infamous Stormtrooper Hit His Head In A New Hope

A Line of Stormtroopers

Today is the 40th anniversary of Star Wars: A New Hope's release, marking the first time that the Star Wars franchise delighted audiences. To celebrate, all sorts of new tidbits about the property are being released, to the joy of the the generations of fans. One of the most accidentally hilarious (and therefore viral) moments from A New Hope show a Stormtrooper accidentally forgetting to duck in a doorway, and hitting his head awkwardly. For some reason, the editors still included this take in the film, and now we know exactly what was happening in that particular extra's head.

Actor Laurie Goode played the now infamous Stormtrooper in the first Star Wars film, and recently opened up about what was happening during that take. It turns out that some gastrointestinal distress was the real culprit, with Goode telling THR:

On the second day of filming, I developed an upset stomach. By mid-morning I had paid three-to-four visits to the loo/bathroom. Having re-dressed myself and returned to the set, I felt the need to rush back to the gents' toilets, but I was placed in shot. On about the fourth take, as I shuffled along, I felt my stomach rumbling, and 'bang', I hit my head! As I wasn't moving too fast it was more of a scuffed bash, so it didn't hurt, but as no-one shouted 'cut' I thought the shot wasn't wide enough for me to be in frame.

Well, this is a perfectly practical reason for messing up a take. Those Stormtrooper helmets are presumably pretty difficult to see out of, so combined with Laurie Goode's stomach issues a snafu occurred. The real question is, who the hell let that take make the final film?

For those of you who don't remember the infamous Stormtrooper scene (how could you?!), you can get a refresher below.

How deliciously awkward is that? I could watch it on repeat, to be honest.

While it seems odd that the editors of A New Hope let such a weird take into the film, there's no way they could have realized just how iconic and beloved the film would be. If they knew that entire generations would be brought up on Luke Skywalker's OG journey, they might have been a bit more detail oriented. Because as Laurie Goode tells it, this was actually the third or fourth take for the shot; they had plenty in the can.

In fact, the Stormtrooper head bump isn't the only awkward shot in A New Hope. Another scene between Darth Vader and General Veers shows the Sith Lord nearly hitting his underling in the head with his helmet. It's always been one of my favorite scenes, check it out (with a hilarious new line added)

Hey, the Star Wars franchise was still in its infancy. Some weird moments were bound to occur. Empire Strikes Back has that incestuous kiss in it, which basically trumps any head hitting or weird takes.

The next trip into the galaxy far, far away is Star Wars: The Last Jedi. The Rian Johnson helmed film will hit theaters on December 15th, 2017.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.