After the release of the first Classic Star Wars coin a couple of months ago featuring Darth Vader, we did wonder if there’d be a bigger version of the coin coming, as the NZ Mint did with its Vintage Disney coin Steamboat Willie. Today the mint has announced the availability of a one kilo silver version of the Vader coin with a 1977 mintage (the year the movie debuted). Carrying the same design as the silver and gold versions already released, this is fundamentally just an upscaled version of the coin and we don’t doubt it will be a fine piece. Selling for $1500 USD, the packaging looks similar to the Steamboat Willie coin at first glance which was ok, but the usual NZ Mint flair for the unusual is missing. Available from today.

Star Wars debuted in cinemas back in 1977 and has become a huge cultural and commercial juggernaut ever since. While much of its reputation rests on the first movie trilogy, the second not garnering much in the way of fan or critical acclaim in comparison, news that the series creator George Lucas had sold the rights to the Star Wars Universe to media juggernaut Disney has excited fans around the world anticipating the movies continuing. That anticipation was not misplaced, and Disney have detailed a hugely ambitious schedule of new movies over the next few years that has reinvigorated interest in Star Wars.

The news that a new movie is to be released for Christmas 2015 was obviously of staggering interest, with pundits already predicting a world-record $2.5b gross. The announcement that fan favourite director J.J. Abrams was to helm the movie has sent the initial excitement into the stratosphere. An early trailer has also further stoked interest.

MINTS DESCRIPTION

Once a heroic Jedi Knight, Darth Vader was seduced by the dark side of the Force, became a Sith Lord, and led the Empire’s eradication of the Jedi Order. He remained in service of the Emperor – the evil Darth Sidious – for decades, enforcing his Master’s will and seeking to crush the fledgling Rebel Alliance. But there was still good in him…

This highly collectible coin has a Limited Mintage of only 10,000 coins (silver), 1,000 coins (¼ oz gold) and 500 coins (1oz gold).

REVERSE: This coin face dramatically illustrated an iconic Star Wars moment when Darth Vader first appears. The Sith Lord, is engraved in fine relief, while behind him two Stormtroopers stand at attention.

OBVERSE: This features the Ian Rank-Broadley effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

PACKAGING: The Star Wars Classic: Darth Vader 1 oz Silver Coin comes presented in a high-quality Star Wars themed coin packaging. The packaging makes this an ideal gift for any Star Wars fan. The Certificate of Authenticity sits within the coin case.

DARTH VADER

Regularly voted amongst the greatest movie villains of all time, Darth Vader is the main protaganist in one of the most popular and iconic movie series ever, Star Wars. A cyborg in service to the Galactic Empire, Vader was a former Jedi called Anakin Skywalker that turned to the Dark Side of the Force upon the death of his beloved. He first appeared in the original movie, now retitled Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope.

Developed into quite a complex and tragic figure, Darth Vader has transcended the movie to become a pop culture icon of huge widespread appeal.

THE COIN SCENE

Along with Grand Moff Tarkin, Vader is charged with recovering the Death Star’s technical schematics, which were stolen by the Rebel Alliance, a scene recreated on this new coin. To that end, he captures and tortures Princess Leia Organa, and stands by while Tarkin destroys her home planet of Alderaan with the Death Star’s superlaser. The coin depicts the moment Darth Vader walks onto Princess Leia’s ship and is flanked by two of the equally iconic Empire Stormtroopers.

She outwits him by launching an escape pod with two droids on board that aren’t detected by Vader’s Star Destroyer warship. The droids are C3P0 and R2D2 and from that moment on, the adventure that becomes the whole Star Wars universe, begins. Dart Vader is a integral part of the journey, without which it’s very likely that Star Wars may not have enjoyed the success it did.

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SPECIFICATION

DENOMINATION COMPOSITION WEIGHT DIAMETER FINISH MINTAGE BOX / COA
$100 NEW ZEALAND 0.999 SILVER 1000 g 100.0 mm PROOF 1,977 YES / YES
NEW ZEALAND MINT