The Star Wars Kid

By Deane Barker on July 25, 2003

Wired News: Star Wars Kid Files Lawsuit: It’s really sad how this whole thing came about and how it’s ended up.

“Quebec teenager Ghyslian Raza was the target of worldwide mockery when a private video he made of himself practicing his lightsaber moves was uploaded to the Net by kids at his school. … Now his parents are claiming damages of $160,000 from the families of the four classmates who digitized and published the video. Ghyslain’s parents claim their son was so humiliated, he is undergoing psychiatric care and may be marked for life by the experience.”

Andrew Baio posted the video over at (it had been on Kazaa for about a month), and when comments turned mean, he chastised everyone for making fun of “one of our own” and organized a donation drive for the kid. On July 16, he sent the kid a 30GB iPod and $2,600 in gift certificates to a Canadian computer store.

There’s also a petition online to give the kid a bit part in Episode III. There are almost 20,000 signatures on it, and one of them is my own. I promise you, if video and file sharing had been as prevalent in the 80s as it is today, you’d see something like this (probably worse) starring me. Go sign it.