Catherine Hiles
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The Mystery of the Missing Star Wars Toyota Celica

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The 1977 Toyota Celica Liftback

The 1977 Toyota Celica Liftback

The Star Wars saga began back in 1977 with the release of the original film. Back in the pre-internet era, Toyota decided to celebrate the release of the classic movie by teaming up with 20th Century Fox to create a Star Wars Celica and give it away to one lucky winner in a sweepstakes. But due to a few scandals here and there, the world never got to find out who won this one-of-a-kind car.

The design work on the Celica was done by Delphi Auto Design in Costa Mesa, California. Unfortunately, soon after the car was created, the design firm was involved in a string of charges that included kidnapping, drugs, and even murder. Unsurprisingly, the sweepstakes kind of fell off the radar as both Toyota and 20th Century Fox tried to distance themselves from Delphi and its wrongdoings.

Presumably, a winner was chosen quietly and the Star Wars Celica went to its loving new home. But the winner was never announced, and since we are talking 1977 before you could just Google this information and discover the owner’s name in seconds, the new owner’s name was never widely known.The 1977 Toyota Celica Liftback

Fast-forward to present day, and it’s still not clear who won the sweepstakes. But that hasn’t stopped die-hard Star Wars fans from trying to find out. Currently, Dean Shada, a screenwriter and producer who also tracks down missing cars in his spare time, is looking for the car on behalf of a mystery person. After four months, Shada still hasn’t tracked down the vehicle, due largely in part to the fact that most people involved with the sweepstakes have since passed away. There are no known records, so it would appear to be a dead end.

Shada has talked to many people, including the widow of the man who designed the car (who was not implicated in any scandal), and some people at Toyota. He is also working with Marden-Kane, the promotions company who originally ran the sweepstakes, but to no avail. Now, Shada is hoping that the owner will learn that he is looking for the car and come forward.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens is released on December 18th, so hopefully the owner will make him or herself known by then to make it the most epic day in Star Wars history.

News Source: Fox News