Every saga has a beginning.
20 years ago today Star Wars Episode I - The Phantom Menace hit the silver screen in the US after one of the biggest marketing campaigns cinema has ever seen, plastering everything from cereal boxes to vending machines with Star Wars branding.
It's fair to say that the George Lucas' first Star Wars prequel didn't live up to everybody's expectations, dividing fans much like Rian Johnson's Star Wars: The Last Jedi did in 2017.
However, I'm not here to discuss the pros and cons of Episode I (you can argue about that in the comments, if you like), but this article is simply to recognise the fact that whatever your opinion of the film was it did help cement the Star Wars franchise in the public eye for another generation.
Happy birthday The Phantom Menace, and thank-you for inducting me into the Star Wars fandom.