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An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

By Attila Nagy on at

Thanks to Budapest Poster Gallery I had the opportunity to take a very close look at the original oil paintings for the world famous Hungarian Star Wars movie posters. The three original artworks were auctioned off on last Sunday (May 31st), and now you too can examine them closer than ever.

Tibor Helényi, the Hungarian painter who sadly passed away last year, created these very controversial, hated or beloved, but for now extremely rare posters for the original trilogy in 1979, 1981 and 1984:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Before you feast your eyes on the details I would like to clarify one thing. When Helényi’s artwork is discussed it is often assumed that he probably hadn’t even watched the movies before he painted these poster artworks. In an interview he refuted these accusations, saying that he did see–and enjoyed a lot–all of the movies, but he did not wanted to paint posters similar to the Western European and US posters, so he let his imagination and his own artistic vision work. He even added extraneous elements to the posters, just for his own amusement (look for the two tusked monsters below!)


Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Luke in his X-Wing starfighter attacks the weak point of Death Star:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

The hand of Darth Vader, holding his lightsaber:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

A confusing easter egg. This scimitar holding tusked monster was created by Helényi, basically just for fun:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

The head of Darth Vader:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

A major spoiler, the destruction of the Death Star:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks


Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Imperial Star Destroyer:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Two AT-AT Imperial Walkers:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Tie fighters shooting lasers:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Imperial troopers led by Darth Vader:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks


Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Imperial trooper on a speeder bike:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Star Destroyer:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Another tusked creature added by Helényi:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Shuttlecraft:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

The second Death Star under construction, depicted as Darth Vader’s eye:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks


Bonus: the Hungarian movie poster for Ridley Scott’s Alien

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

A spaceship, not seen in the movie:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks

Face of an alien creature, straight from Helényi’s mind:

An Exclusive Look at the Craziest Star Wars Poster Artworks


Live Auctioneers Sci-Fi Posters – Tibor Helenyi Estate Auction, 11:00 AM PT – May 31.