Stormtroopers, jedi knights, wookies and Darth Vaders took over the Spanish city of Barcelona on Sunday in what has become an annual pilgrimage for Star Wars fans.

Storm troopers.

Storm troopers. Image by Gordon Tarpley / CC BY 2.0

The parade is in its ninth year but this year it came just weeks before the release of the hotly anticipated new film, Star Wars Episode VII: the Force Awakens. Hundreds of elaborately costumed fans turned the modernist city into a surreal film scene as they walked through the streets of Barcelona, culminating in a red carpet photo opportunity where members of the public could have their picture taken with the film characters. Stormtroopers have been popping up in unlikely places around the world in preparation for the release of the new film in mid-December; earlier this week they could be found surfing a tidal river in Gloucestershire, England, that was a filming location for the new movie.

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