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23rd July 2003, 17:49

"'Star Wars Kid' a reluctant Internet phenomenon

CTV.ca News Staff

A video featuring a Quebec teenager's acrobatic battle moves has become the latest Internet sensation and a source of guffaws for millions. Ghyslain Raza, now better know as the Star Wars Kid, isn't laughing.

Trois-Rivieres, Quebec is hardly a galaxy far, far away, but the city is the unlikely home of a very reluctant Jedi Knight.

Raza, 15, shot a video of himself for a school project -- a mock sword fight intended for viewing by a handful of people.

But a few of his classmates uploaded it to the Internet, and within days it had been doctored to look like a scene from Star Wars.

Millions have watched the video, including many people in Trois-Rivieres.

"He makes a fool of himself anyway. You see the guy, you say 'Oh God,'" says CyberCafe owner Luc Sirois.

The story made it into numerous publications worldwide, including the New York Times. Now it has landed in court.

The four students who allegedly put the video on the Internet are facing a $250,000 lawsuit. It claims Raza has suffered "harassment," "ridicule" and "persecution" at school and in the public at large.

Raza ended up leaving high school and finishing his year in the psychiatric wing of a local hospital.

An employee of Raza's old school says the pressure on the young man was intolerable.

"When 500 people laugh at you every noon when you walk into the cafeteria, it can't be easy," says Rafael Jacob.

And in cyberspace it's not easy keeping a low profile once you get linked to Star Wars.

"Star Wars is one of the biggest virtual communities. There are millions of fans. So take this kid, put it together with Star Wars and bingo, it's a hit," says Internet consultant Francois Charron.

It's also eliciting some sympathy. There's an online petition asking Lucasfilm to give the Star Wars Kid a cameo in the next installment of the film.

"... this poor kid is living the nightmare of having his private dorkiness projected across the world to giggling Web users," it reads.

All the result of an encounter with the dark side of the Internet.

With a report from CTV's Jed Kahane"

Here is the petition.



23rd July 2003, 19:04
Is there a link to the video?

23rd July 2003, 19:10
Originally posted by sammycerv
Is there a link to the video?


Take your pick, there are dozens of remixes there.

23rd July 2003, 21:04

Site's down, try that one.

BTW, here is an online petition to put the kid in Episode III.


24th July 2003, 07:07
These are too funny. I only saw a couple so far and my favorite one is The Dork Clones. I feel bad for the kid though.

Striking Hand
24th July 2003, 07:16
Actually, by now he should be asking for royalties already.

If he plays his cards right he could make a mint out of the whole atmosphere.