'Star Wars' marks its anniversary just the way you'd expect, with plenty of limited-edition items



'Star Wars' marks its anniversary just the way you'd expect, with plenty of limited-edition items

Harrison Ford in "Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope."
Sunset Boulevard | Corbis | Getty Images

For Star Wars fans, May 25th is kind of a big deal. It marks the 40th anniversary of the release of the first "Star Wars" film, "A New Hope."

In 1977, "Star Wars" became an instant success at the box office, and dominated the pop culture of the day. Companies scrambled to keep up with the demand for toys and merchandise related to the film.

These days, demand is still high. Since Walt Disney purchased Lucasfilm from George Lucas in 2012 for $4 billion and released the hotly anticipated "The Force Awakens" in 2015, sales of "Star Wars" merchandise has continued to rise.

In the toy industry alone more than $760 million worth of Star Wars merchandise was sold last year, topping 2015 sales by $60 million, according to the NPD Group.

The anniversary is another excuse to release even more hats and jackets, toys and notebooks.

Here are a few of those 40th-anniversary specials that you can get your hands on:

  • C-3PO satin souvenir jacket


    To celebrate the 40th anniversary of "Star Wars," Her Universe designed a collection of apparel that draws inspiration from characters throughout the franchise.

    The C-3PO jacket is embroidered with the official 40th Anniversary logo on the front and features a scene between the beloved gold droid and R2-D2 from "A New Hope" on the back.

    The sleeves are gold, just like 3PO's plating, and the interior lining has a wiring pattern that resembles his exposed circuitry.

    Source: Her Universe
  • 40th Anniversary socks


    ThinkGeek's 40th Anniversary socks feature characters from the original trilogy like Chewbacca, Darth Vader and Princess Leia. The men's set has three pairs of socks and the women's set has five. Each will set you back about $18.

    The geek merchandise company is only selling 2,400 sets of each, so you'll have to act fast if you want to scoop up these collectibles.

    Star Wars 40th Anniversary Men’s and Ladies' Socks
    Source: ThinkGeek
  • The Black Series 40th Anniversary Legacy Pack

    $39.99, additional figures $19.99 each

    Harking back to the days of Kenner Toys, Hasbro is selling a pack of toy figures modeled after the early-bird certificate package from 1977. Hasbro bought Kenner in 1991.

    At the time of the release of "A New Hope," Kenner had only just signed a deal to take on the manufacturing rights to George Lucas' film. When the film was a runaway hit, the company had to act quickly because its toys were not going to be ready in time for Christmas.

    So, the company sold early-bird certificates that guaranteed that the holder would receive all 12 action figures in the mail in early 1978. The collector cards and original sets of these toys remain sought-after collectibles.

    Hasbro's new set costs $40 and comes with a display stand, back card and a vintage-inspired Darth Vader figure. The other 40th Anniversary Black Series vintage figures can be purchased separately for $19.99 each.

    Star Wars The Black Series 40th Anniversary Legacy Pack.
    Source: Hasbro
  • Who Shot First pin


    Perhaps one of the greatest debates in all of "Star Wars" is: Who shot first? Was it Han Solo or Greedo? Now you can let everyone know where you stand with this Disney Parks exclusive pin.

    Available only at Disney theme parks, this pin allows you to slide the 40th Anniversary logo to select either Han or Greedo as the one with the quicker draw.

    Source: Disney
  • Floral Rebellion romper


    Another piece in the Her Universe 40th anniversary collection is the floral Rebellion romper. The company is known for its "everyday cosplay" designs that feature elements from a fandom, but in a subtle way.

    The romper is just one example. The floral pattern disguises the rebel symbols, X-Wings and rebel helmets at first glance, but a closer inspection makes it clear where your allegiances lie.

    Star Wars romper
    Source: Her Universe
  • 40th Anniversary hat


    This adjustable snapback hat from Lids features the 40th Anniversary "Star Wars" logo and costs about $30.

    Star Wars hat.
    Source: Lids
  • "May the Force be with you" pin


    Pins have long been a big part of the "Star Wars" collecting experience. Fans collect and trade pins to grow their collections and to bond with other collectors.

    Over the last four decades, fans have established a tight-knit community of collectors who help each other find missing items in their sets and meet up at fan conventions. Most find that they value the friendships they've made more than their collections.

    This 40th Anniversary "May the Force be with you" pin will likely be a hot collector's item because of its exclusivity. It is only available for purchase at a Disney theme park.

    Source: Disney
  • Notebook collection


    The 40th Anniversary notebook collection from ThinkGeek features artwork sourced from 1975 to 1977, including concept treatments.

    Inside, each notebook features quotes from the films and ruled sheets of paper. Get three notebooks for about $13.

    Star Wars notebooks.
    Source: ThinkGeek
  • Hot Wheels Star Wars cars

    $3.99 each

    Mattel created more than a dozen cars and vehicles to celebrate the 40th anniversary of "Star Wars." Some of the cars are based on vehicles seen within the franchise, while others take inspiration from characters.

    The company even released a car based on Biggs Darklighter, Luke Skywalker's best friend from Tatooine and an X-Wing pilot.

    Star Wars cars from Mattel.
    Source: Mattel
  • Plush toys


    ThinkGeek is offering up two sets of plush toys in honor of the 40th anniversary. Each contains five characters and costs about $60.

    The Luke set comes with Luke, Leia, C-3PO, R2-D2, and a Jawa, while the Darth Vader set comes with Darth Vader, Han Solo, Chewbacca, a stormtrooper and a Tusken Raider.

    Stars Wars plush set.
    Source: ThinkGeek
  • Jabba the Hutt tiki mug


    ThinkGeek introduced the Jabba the Hut tiki mug, with small Salacious Crumb glass, during the Star Wars Celebration in Orlando last month. The set is an extension of the company's widely popular Star Wars tiki collection and is available for a limited time only.

    Jaba the Hut tiki cup
    Source: ThinkGeek
  • 40th Anniversary T-shirts

    $34.99 (T-shirt), $32.99 (tank)

    Available exclusively at Disney theme parks, these tank tops and T-shirts feature the 40th Anniversary logo.

    Source: Disney
  • Star Wars Monopoly game


    This Star Wars 40th Anniversary edition of Hasbro's popular board game has a few twists. Instead of purchasing properties, players collect iconic ships and scenes from "A New Hope."

    Players can side with the rebels or the Empire and build fleets and bases to aid their side. The last person standing after everyone else goes bankrupt is the winner.

    Star Wars Monopoly
    Source: ThinkGeek
  • 40th Anniversary dish set


    Boxed Lunch is offering up a "Star Wars" plate and mug set for the 40th. The white ceramic set comes with a mug, a bowl, a small plate and a large plate and features the anniversary logo.

    Star Wars dish set.
    Source: Box Lunch