May the Force be with you

May 10, 1999

The wait is almost over, young Jedis. But until "Star Wars: Episode I -- Phantom Menace" opens May 19, the only way to experience the Force firsthand is through the galaxy of Star Wars sites on the Internet. Here are some of the best:

At the official "Star Wars" site (www.starwars.com), you'll find "Phantom Menace" movie trailers, behind-the-scenes snapshots, and plot teasers.

But you'll soon tire of the Lucasfilm party line. To get the real skinny, visit JediNet (www.jedinet. com) or The Force (www.theforce.net), which features some of the best links, rumors and plot summaries this side of Endor thanks to its web of "Star Wars" fanatics and a pilfered draft of the "Phantom Menace" script.

If you think camping outside the theater sounds like fun, PhantomCast (www.phantomcast.com) or Countdown to Star Wars (www. countdown.starwars.com)might dim your light saber a bit. They feature live Webcasts of the frea..., er, fans waiting at cineplexes in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco -- some for more than a month. You can even chat with the campers and find out what it's like to have no life.

Although the next installment of George Lucas' sci-fi saga hasn't been written, there are plenty of rumors. Check them out at Episodeii.Com (www.episodeii.com/ two.html).

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