A character named Yak Face, briefly seen in Return of the Jedi, is arguably one of the most expensive action figures amongst the vintage Star Wars series. A mint condition Blue Snaggletooth can cost you over $300 and the character wasn’t even seen in any of the films. There’s even the story of Willrow Hood: A background character in Empire Strikes Back who has not only taken on such popularity over the past decade, but the prop he held, (an ice cream maker) managed to become a center point for Season One of The Mandalorian. 5 out of the 6 original Star Wars Bounty Hunters from Empire Strikes back didn’t even have lines, and they’ve gone on to become some of the most iconic characters in Star Wars history.
2020 was supposed to be a simple year for Dominic Pace. Featured in episodes 1 and 3 of The Mandalorian as Gekko the Bounty Hunter, Pace was scheduled to appear at a handful of ComicCons to promote the character along with other side characters from the franchise past and present. When the Covid pandemic hit, the ComicCons shut down along with countless Comic Book Stores limiting their operations due to the pandemic.
“I’ve always been able to relate to the small business owner as a working character actor,” says Pace. “It’s the grind where things aren’t handed to you but you have to get up every day and make it happen.”
In an effort to support local comic book shops around the country, Pace embarked on a 20,000-mile tour where he visited over 40 comic book shops at no cost to the business owner. In most tours many would charge a fee to appear, Pace gave a percentage of his autograph sales directly to the stores.
Within the Star Wars Community, there are a number of charitable organizations throughout the world. Most notably are groups such as the 501st Legion, The Rebel Legion, as well as The Mandalorian Mercs. Pace has been inducted as an honorary member to all three groups for his contribution to the Star Wars community, as well as his support of Small Business.
In December of 2020, some of the fans had taken initiative and decided to create their own Fan Fiction Comic Book of Gekko. Pace will travel through the summer to visit close to 60 comic book shops throughout the country.
During his tour of 2020, The mayor of Sioux City, Iowa officially named July 18, 2020, as Gekko the Bounty Hunter aka Dominic Pace Day. On July 26, 2020, Pace was given a key to the city in Cleveland, Tennessee. Close to $25,000 was raised for local comic book shops along with $2,000 for Make-A-Wish, $1,000 for the Peter Mayhew Foundation as well as the AFLAC Cancer Research.