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This Star Wars actor nearly got arrested by armed police at the Oscars

The Oscars are supposed to be the proudest night of a movie career, but one Star Wars cast member found himself having a pretty miserable night.

Star Wars A New Hope had a presence at the Oscars in 1978

The chance to go to the Oscars is an exciting opportunity for anyone in Hollywood. If you make one of the best movies of a given year, you get to celebrate that new movie with your peers. Or, in the case of one Star Wars cast member, you end up having to narrowly avoid spending a night in handcuffs.

When the first Star Wars movie took Hollywood by storm in 1977, it received 10 Oscars nominations and went on to win six competitive awards on the night in technical categories.

But the actor behind one of the best Star Wars characters found his night went from joy to misery after an unfortunate clash with the police.

Anthony Daniels had taken to the stage earlier in the night in his full C-3PO outfit, but he had changed back into a suit rather than the garb of a Star Wars droid when he found himself in a sticky situation after heading downstairs to the bar.

“My personal guard reluctantly let me go off by myself. I left him to watch all my stuff, including the rather unappealing badge they’d given me. It looked like some kind of radiation alarm and certainly didn’t go with my smart clothes,” he wrote in his book I Am C-3PO: The Inside Story.

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When Daniels got out of the elevator, he found the boot of “a fully weaponised police officer” blocking his path. Not recognising him without the golden outfit of a science fiction movie, they assumed he was a gate-crasher and threatened to arrest him.

Daniels wrote: “Time stopped. My future life flashed in front of me. I’d be hand-cuffed, fingerprinted, imprisoned with who-knew-who, my professional life over, left a laughing stock.”

When the officer became distracted by some other drama, Daniels saw an opportunity. “Without even looking, I stepped neatly backwards [into the elevator] and pushed a button. When he turned around, it was too late for his boot to stop my escape. By the time he’d raced up the stairs to the next level, I was clinging gratefully to my personal minder and flashing my badge at everyone.”

Anthony Daniels as C-3PO on the set of Star Wars

Daniels escaped to party another day and would attend the Oscars inside and outside of his famous Star Wars costume on numerous occasions. For more from Star Wars, check out our guides to the Star Wars timeline, the best Star Wars villains, and the Skywalker family tree.