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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.
Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace is the first instalment of the prequel trilogy, set 32 years before the original movie.
It introduces a young Anakin Skywalker, who is living as a slave on Tatooine. It also features the Galactic Republic and the Jedi Order before their downfall.
Production started in 1997 after Star Wars creator George Lucas determined that digital visual effects technology had advanced to the stage where he could realise his ambitious plans to tell the backstory leading up to the original Star Wars trilogy.
The Phantom Menace was the highest grossing film of 1999, and following a 3D re-release in 2012 its world-wide takings surpassed $1 billion.
Lloyd - who gave his name as Jake Broadbent - was arrested on Wednesday 17 June in Charleston, South Carolina, after a police chase that saw him allegedly podracing at up to 120 mph. According to reports, Lloyd led police on a 25-mile chase which only ended after he ploughed into a tree. He was charged with reckless driving, failing to stop, driving without a licence, and resisting arrest.
Lisa Lloyd, Jake's mother, has since revealed that her son suffered from schizophrenia and had attacked her in March this year whilst apparently off his medication.
The actor who is now 26 was just 8 years old when he was cast in the role of a young Anakin Skywalker; a role which he later described as having "turned his life into a living hell". By the time he was 22 he had quit acting altogether.