Denver fan D.C. Barns wins appearance in Star Wars: Episode VII

Force For Change contest raised money for UNICEF

DENVER - One Star Wars fan from Denver will soon be visiting a galaxy far, far away.

D.C. Barns won the Star Wars: Force for Change contest, the franchise announced Monday on YouTube. The announcement included a video of Barns being surprised with the announcement.

The video begins with a question for Barns: "When did you first become a Star Wars fan?"

"1977, at Cinema 70 in Colorado Springs," he replied.

By the end of the video, Barns had a new favorite Star Wars moment -- learning that he will become part of the franchise.

Barns, who is now an Online Editor and Colorist at a Denver media company, told 7NEWS that he often quotes Star Wars and views it as more of a "cultural phenomenon" than a movie.

"I'm definitely a fan, or a geek or a nerd, all of those. I'll own it," he said.

Barns' prize includes a trip to London for himself and a guest, a behind-the-scenes visit to the Star Wars set and he will be fitted with a costume and filmed for a scene in the upcoming Star Wars: Episode Vll.

So far, Barns doesn't know what his role in the film will be or even precisely when he will fly to London.

"I'm guessing it will be someone who walks by in the background but that will be totally worth it," he said.

Entrants to the Star Wars: Force for Change contest donated money for UNICEF. In total, it collected $4,261,410 from citizens of 125 countries.

"The funds raised through Star Wars: Force for Change will impact the lives of children around the world, through projects like MobiStation, a portable, solar-powered educational kit to ensure children have access to quality learning anywhere, and Rapid FTR (Family Tracing and Reunification), a mobile phone application that helps reunite separated and unaccompanied children with their families in natural disasters," the movie franchise wrote in their announcement.

Barns said he first learned about the contest on Twitter, clicked the link and thought: "I'd totally donate to that."

"I didn't really expect to win," he added.

By phone, 7NEWS asked Barns who on the Star Wars set he most hoped to meet. His list included director J.J. Abrams and actress Carrie Fisher.

"Because she's princess Leia, of course," Barns said with a shy laugh.

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