Fortune's January 2015 cover
By Alex Fitzpatrick
December 29, 2014

Fortune’s January issue features an exclusive sneak peek at one of the Star Wars saga’s most iconic ships: Han Solo’s Millennium Falcon.

We already knew that the Falcon, a freighter ship converted into a smuggling vessel, would play a role in the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens — It was spotted at the end of the film’s first teaser trailer pulling some serious Gs while evading Imperial TIE Fighters.

But Fortune’s new cover gives us a closer look at the revamped Falcon. There’s also another image showing the ship parked in a hangar bay behind Walt Disney Co. CEO Bob Iger.

Here’s how Fortune (which like TIME is owned by Time Inc.) and Lucasfilm put the images together:

Lucasfilm’s special effects division, Industrial Light & Magic (ILM), worked with Fortune to create both the cover and opening photograph in the story, an inside look at the innovative technologies used across Disney’s diverse businesses and brands. The collaboration started with our photo shoot with CEO Iger earlier this month in New York. The photos were then turned over to ILM to, well, work their magic. Not surprisingly, the secretive division was mum about the exact process for creating the realistic shot of Iger standing right on set, casually leaning against a chunk of metal (the image seen in the opening pages of the story).

As for the cover shot, Yannick Dusseault, visual effects art director for The Force Awakens, and his team gave Fortune six options showing the Falcon in different ways. The resulting image required the custom rendering of ILM’s computer generated Falcon. According to ILM, the fabled ship was rendered in wireframe form (a skeletal version) as well as a more layered “textured render,” which were combined in Photoshop to create the final image.

The Force Awakens, the seventh Star Wars film, is slated for a Dec. 18, 2015 release.


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