Remember that enormous Star Wars snow sculpture? Wonder who helped make it? The Japanese military, that's who.

The Japanese Self Defense Force Northern Army 11th Brigade was instrumental in completing the large works, including the Vader piece and the snow version of Shinto shrine Kasuga-taisha.


Here, you can see how the Japanese military drew up plans for the snow sculptures.

[Photo: Hound_7]

Here, you can see the building plan for Kasuga-taisha.

[Photos: Ministry of Defense]

As noted on its official website, the 11th Brigade procured fresh, clean snow from outside Sapporo and then hauled the snow into the middle of the city.


This has become a tradition, and the brigade is based in Hokkaido, where the snow festival is held.

[Photo: military_2ch]

In case you're wondering why the military is roped in for this task, perhaps this image will clue you in:

[Photo: FBi_JP]

Look at all that fucking snow.

Seven hundred 5-ton-trucks' worth of snow were needed for this Star Wars sculpture alone. That's the most snow ever used for any one sculpture at this festival.

The military also cut the snow into blocks and put them into place.

The brigade's mission is to complete these works accurately, successfully, and without causing injury.

[Photo: Ministry of Defense]

[Photo: Ministry of Defense]

The craftsmanship is remarkable.

[Photo: naka_kane]

[Photo: royalEF5861]



[Photo: goldenbaddo]


Beats getting sent overseas to fight in wars, I guess.

To contact the author of this post, write to or find him on Twitter @Brian_Ashcraft.

Kotaku East is your slice of Asian internet culture, bringing you the latest talking points from Japan, Korea, China and beyond. Tune in every morning from 4am to 8am.