Till Darth do they part

Till Darth do they part
SPECIAL: Star Wars fan Muhammad Suffian Suhaimi and his wife Nur Aishah Jamal had their dais customised for $3,500.
PHOTO: D'shootz Photography

Marriage didn't work out so well for Anakin Skywalker and Padme Amidala.

In Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge Of The Sith, he Force-choked his pregnant wife in a fit of rage and she died soon afterwards.

Still, that hasn't stopped local couples from borrowing elements from a galaxy far, far away when tying the knot.

Star Wars weddings are more popular than ever now, with the highly-anticipated release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens on Thursday.

We profile three couples who have used Star Wars references and themes at their weddings.

And no, none of them have choked their spouses to death.

UNDER THE WATCHFUL EYES OF THE DARK LORD

Photo: D'Shootz Photography

When diehard Star Wars fan Muhammad Suffian Suhaimi married his girlfriend of five years Nur Aishah Jamal on Nov 14, no one expected Darth Vader to be present at their solemnisation.

The couple's traditional Malay wedding dais featured standees of the Star Wars villain, flanked by two armed Stormtroopers. Illuminated by LED lights, the characters looked like ghostly holograms.

"We didn't tell my parents we were building a Star Wars-themed dais until the day it was set up," Mr Suffian, a 30-year-old store manager, told The New Paper over the phone.

"When my mother saw it, she asked, 'Why is Darth Vader here?'"

Still, the unusual set-up was immensely popular with their friends and family, and everyone wanted to take photos with it.

"I let him do whatever he wanted for his decorations, since it is his wedding, too," said Madam Aishah, a 26-year-old primary school teacher.

"Star Wars kind of grew on me and now I think it's quite cool."

The dais, customised by Iss Wedding Designs, cost about $3,500.

Rather than find the presence of the Sith baddie ominous, the couple thought it was actually comforting.

"Both of us lost our grandfathers when we were younger," said Mr Suffian, who added jokingly: "Having Darth Vader there, we actually felt like our grandpas were watching over us during our wedding."

Added Madam Aishah: "Besides, Darth Vader isn't really the bad guy. I think he has a good side, too."

One of Mr Suffian's groomsmen also arranged to have the traditional Malay wedding band surprise the couple with The Imperial March (Darth Vader's Theme) as they walked down the aisle.

After their afternoon solemnisation ceremony, the couple headed to Changi Airport to take wedding day shots with the X-wing and TIE fighter replica displays.

The couple and their wedding party even had their lightsabers for the shoot, which cost around $2,500 including photography and videography.

Mr Suffian said: "I'm a nerd and geek at heart, and since I'm getting married once, I wanted something that personifies me.

"I think our Star Wars wedding turned out better than we expected. And God willing, when we have kids, we will name our son Anakin Mikail and our daughter Leia Mikayla."

WHEN VADER AND JEDI GROOMSMEN GATECRASH

 
Photo: Nudge Photography

Because his bride-to-be had not watched a single Star Wars film, it took fanboy Glenn Koh some time to convince his fiancee Shermaine Wong to agree to a Star Wars-inspired shoot which took place a fortnight before their Dec 28 wedding last year.

Photos include one of the couple wielding lightsabers as the Imperial Star Destroyer hovers over them and the bride playfully holding the groom in a Force-choke.

Madam Wong, 30, who works in communications, said: "My parents found it quite funny and cute, so did our older relatives. They had a good laugh and the pictures were certainly memorable."

For their wedding day, Mr Koh, who's 33 and works in marketing, arrived at his bride's house for the gatecrashing ceremony wearing a Darth Vader mask, while his groomsmen were decked out in Jedi robes.

"It was all in the name of good fun and it gave me an excuse to use my lightsabers," he joked.

Their wedding photography package by Nudge Photography cost $5,600, while the three-day rental of Star Wars robes cost $50 per piece.

The couple, who are currently based overseas, will catch Star Wars: The Force Awakens - the first Star Wars movie they get to watch together - this Thursday while on holiday in Hong Kong.

BRIDE GETS STARRY-EYED OVER PHOTOSHOOT

Photo: The Art of Mezame

According to the Jedi Code in Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones, a Jedi shall not know anger. Nor hatred. Nor love.

But Mr Adrian Ng and his wife Adeline Wong used lightsabers to tell their fictional love story of two star-crossed Jedi Knights in their pre-wedding photoshoot with photography company The Art of Mezame.

And the idea actually came from the bride, who is the bigger fan.

"Most people think of Star Wars as a guy thing but there has been an increase in the number of female fans over the years," said the 29-year-old magazine editor who enjoys reading the Star Wars novels.

"Still, I am the lone Star Wars fan among my girlfriends."

For their pre-wedding photoshoot in April, the couple rented lightsabers from Kit Sabers, bought costumes from AliExpress and shot on location in Changi. The shoot, including the sponsorship and rental of lightsabers, props and equipment, as well as a printed photo book detailing the couple's Jedi love story, cost between $5,000 and $6,000.

To their surprise, their shoot was covered by the South China Morning Post and photography sites like PetaPixel.com.

"When the pictures went viral, everyone was really excited and couldn't wait to attend the wedding on Aug 8 and to see all the photos," said Mr Ng, a 35-year-old sales manager.

lisat@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on December 15, 2015.
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