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Luke Skywalker to helm movie of own comic, Black Pearl

'Culmination of years of wish fulfillment on my part'

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Mark Hamill will make his first foray into big screen directing by taking the helm for a film adaptation of his own comic book Black Pearl, AP reports.

Hamill, 58, was at Cannes to promote the project with Black Pearl co-author Eric Johnson, who helped create Luther Drake - an "ordinary man who saves a woman from abduction then finds himself at the center of a media frenzy as he steps into the role of costumed crusader for justice".

Originally a film script, Black Pearl was picked up by Dark Horse Comics which asked the pair to adapt it into a graphic novel.

Hamill said of the challenge of bringing his creation to cinema audiences: "It's kind of daunting. The pendulum swings from great confidence to what did I get myself into? But I want to. This is going to be really a culmination of years and years of wish fulfillment on my part."

Inevitably, the actor-turned-director was asked about his role as Luke Skywalker, something which propelled him to stardom but then effectively kyboshed his acting career. He said: "What happened to me, happened to me. I remember reading about the Beatles. They asked George Harrison, 'what was it like to be in the Beatles?' He went, 'What was it like not to be in the Beatles?'

"It happened so quickly, I don't think I had a chance to sort of develop a sense of entitlement, like, I should now be an A-list action star. I wasn't really that interested. I was kind of taking it as it comes."

Black Pearl will be produced by industry newbie Berkeley Square Films, in which Hamill has a stake. No one has as yet been cast for the lead, and Hamill said he wasn't tempted to appear on screen himself. He concluded: "That would be distracting to me. I don't want people to go, 'Oh, look, there's the gratuitous cameo thing by the egomaniac.'" ®

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