Watch Star Wars' Classic Hyperspace Jump Recreated Using Fiber-Optics and Poster Board

May the Fourth Be With Us... even in hyperspace. The famous “jump” has been seen across countless scifi films and shows—with even more countless names—but the Millennium Falcon definitely has one of the greatest. In honor of Star Wars Day, check out this exclusive video from Backyard VFX artist Joey Shanks that shows how to recreate the jump to hyperspace using a few basic tools, a decent camera, and a bit of patience. It’s Practical Magic, everyone!

How to Create the Jump to Hyperspace


Fiber-Optics Light Kit ($51 Amazon)
Fiber-optic lights
Powerful LED flashlight
Fiber-optic cable nozzle

Black matte poster board
Millennium Falcon Cockpit ($20 eBay)
DSLR camera
Camera slider
Mounting plate for the slider


1. Use pushpins to create starscape in poster board.

2. Stick fiber-optic lights through the holes.

3. Use wire cutters to remove excess so the lights barely stick out of the board.

4. Attach your starboard to the mounting plate and put on the slider.

5. Grab your cockpit (Shanks used Millennium Falcon CD-ROM Playset).

6. Place your camera on the slider and prep your shot.

7. Set camera’s shutter for 4-8 seconds; start shot and slowly slide starboard toward the camera along the slider.

8. Slide the camera back in increments and repeat to create the animated effect.

9. May the Force Be With You!

Video Editor and Staff Writer at io9. My doppelganger is that rebelling greeting card from Futurama.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter


Around 1974 I created something that was remarkably like the whole hyper speed star streak thing which would later be such a great visual in Star Wars. So I was first!
My technique was far simpler than this fiber optic approach, it was 1974 after all. All I needed was a sheet of thick Mylar that was coated with a mirror finish and a sheet of aluminum foil, for color I added little slices of Rosco filters between the light and the aluminum foil.
This is how it worked. Roll the mylar into a tube, tape it shut. Cut out a sheet of aluminum foil cover one side of the open tube with it, pin prick holes into the foil to create the stars. Put a few colored gells over some of the holes. Put the camera on the other side of the tube, put a light behind the foil, shoot! Zoom in during a slow exposure, rotate the camera by mounting the camera on a tripod sideways and rotate it during a long exposure. You can also zoom in to the side wall of the tube and pan to the stars from the foil and pan off and it still looked great.
Yah, me, its all about me.
The reflective mylar tube created massive reflections of all the stars at the end of the tube, I was that Japanese artists with her light rooms before her. ME AGAIN!