When you think of Kansas, you don’t necessarily think of “Star Wars.”
So it might surprise you to know the state has some of the movie franchise’s biggest fans in the nation.
With Star Wars Day coming May 4, BetKansas.com — your home to the best Kansas sports betting coverage — decided to look at the states most fanatic about the “Star Wars” franchise.
We utilized Google Trends to see the search volume in each of the U.S. states for the topic “Star Wars,” which covers all movies, shows and more of the franchise. For a solid sample size, we used searches over the past five years.
Most Star Wars Fanatic States
Wizard of Oz Inspired Star Wars Franchise
Despite the fact none of the movies have been filmed here and there’s no amusement park rides honoring “Star Wars,” Kansas ranks eighth — just behind Montana — in the nation for being the most fanatic about the franchise. The Topeka and Wichita-Hutchinson metro areas top the state for the most searches.
The top five topics from the “Star Wars” universe have included Grogu, the little star of the “Mandalorian” series on Disney Plus streaming service, two animated series in “Star Wars: The Bad Batch” and “Star Wars: Visions,” and the “Andor” series on Disney Plus.
Trying to find a Kansas connection to “Star Wars” isn’t an easy task. Oh sure, there have been stories about fans’ memorabilia collections. Then there’s Kansas grad Tom Kane, from Overland Park, who was the voice of Yoda in the animated series “Star Wars: The Clone Wars.” He has many acting and voice credits for movies and video games, including “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” “Rogue One” and “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.”
One Kansas tie to “Star Wars” requires some deeper thinking, and it has to do with legendary filmmaker George Lucas’ list of favorite movies.
Movieweb.com looked at 20 movies that inspired Lucas’ Star Wars universe and coming in at No. 3 on that list is “The Wizard of Oz.” The story of Dorothy’s trip from Kansas to Oz is seen in Luke Skywalker’s rise from Tatooine to flying around in ships to save the galaxy.
Whatever the reason, as May 4th approaches, you can bet (just not on Kansas sportsbook apps) many in the state will be celebrating. May the force be with you.