Clad in a black Darth Vader t-shirt and Skywalker swagger, Robot Chicken and MAD writer Kevin Shinick carried the lightsaber along the Pacific Coast Highway to help us kick off yesterday’s leg of Course of the Force in style. A longtime Star Wars fan, Shinick leaped at the opportunity to take part in this year’s race, especially since it’s for such a good cause. If we didn’t know any better, we’d say the Force is strong with this one. At the Santa Monica Pier conival, I caught up with Shinick to talk to him about his earliest Star Wars memories, why he got involved in Course of the Force and his childhood belief in real life Wookiees.
Course of the Force: So, how was your segment? How did it go?
Kevin Shinick: [laughs] It was great, man! It was over too soon, to be perfectly honest!
COTF: Right? A quarter mile is over before you know it.
KS: Yeah, we stopped at a light and they were like, “Hand it off!”
COTF: How did you get involved with Course of the Force?
KS: Well, I’m a huge Star Wars fan and I work on MAD and Robot Chicken. You know, that’s in our blood.
COTF: Oh, Robot Chicken likes Star Wars? Since when?
KS: Believe it or not! Just a little bit. We’ve been up to the Ranch a number of times. When I was asked to do this, first of all, of course. Second, it’s for a good cause. The great thing about it is that it benefits a terrific organization like Make-a-Wish and you pair up with Lucasfilm/Star Wars, a brand that could not have more awareness and bring attention to something that could always use some help.
COTF: What is your earliest Star Wars memory?
KS: I saw Star Wars in a drive-in movie theater in 1977 and it was great. At such a young age, it didn’t dawn on me that Chewbacca was an actor. I thought there was a whole species of Wookiees out there and they cast him!
COTF: That’s pretty amazing. Like, “Where did the find this guy?”
KS: I seriously thought that. Every one who had masks on were robots and they hired a real life Wookiee.
COTF: He must have been mad when the passed over him for Harry and the Hendersons.
KS: That’s exactly right! [laughs]
COTF: What is Star Wars important to you?
KS: It’s so funny to say that it’s universal because it’s more than that; it’s intergalactic. It relates to everybody and it’s a language all of its own, but it’s a language we all speak. If we can use that to help great causes like the Make-a-Wish Foundation then we’re using our powers for good.
COTF: One last question – of all the characters in the Star Wars universe, who would you want to play?
KS: Well, you know what? Boba Fett is always a favorite of mine.
COTF: It’s hard to say no to a jetpack.
KS: Exactly! I mean, he’s just so cool. How about you?
COTF: Me? Oh my – I guess Admiral Ackbar because I really enjoy seafood. And alerting people to traps.
KS: Nice. I think it’s a perfect fit.
COTF: Well, thank you so much for your time!
KS: Thank you!
Stay tuned for more interviews with our celebrity runners and be sure to download our Qualcomm-powered Course of the Force app for up-to-the-minute updates, photos and more! Follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter (use #CourseoftheForce) to join the conversation. May the Force be with you always and I’ll see you on the Course!