STAR WARS: George Lucas Reflects On Being Told A 10-Year-Old Anakin Skywalker Would "Destroy" The Franchise
In the latest edition of The Star Wars Archives, George Lucas reflects on being told that Anakin Skywalker's introduction as a child would destroy the franchise, while defending the prequel's politics...
A new book, The Star Wars Archives: 1999 - 2005, recently went on sale, and for Star Wars fans, it's undoubtedly a must-have.
Polygon has shared some excerpts from the book, including comments from George Lucas which sees the creator of this Galaxy Far, Far Away reveal that studio execs were not on board with his decision to begin the prequel trilogy with a 10-year-old lead star.
"When Lucas initially told 20th Century Fox that he was making the story of how Anakin became Darth Vader, they were as excited as anybody else," the site explains. "Then he told them that, in the first film, Anakin would be 10 years old. 'You’re going to destroy the franchise; you’re going to destroy everything!'"
"Lucas explains that he told people at Lucasfilm he was 'making a movie that nobody wants to see,' but would rather do that than telling the same story over and over," it continues, sharing some insight into the filmmaker's thought process. "And to be fair to George, it still made a billion dollars."
The Phantom Menace remains one of the most divisive Star Wars movies ever released, but Attack of the Clones is considered even worse, and The Rise of Skywalker is now the instalment of the Skywalker Saga that seems to draw the ire from the majority of fans. Of course, something that's hard to forget in Episode I was all that nonsense about the way politics work in this Galaxy.
"Lucas acknowledges that people were upset that the prequels opened with the trade blockade and dispute, but nevertheless says 'that’s how wars start.' He goes on to say that The Phantom Menace starts with 'corrupt corporations' doing bad things in secret and that all corporations care about is making money, while everyone else is trying to do the right thing but are completely overwhelmed."
"The two main themes are about becoming a bad person and democracy being given away; 'there’s no coup, there’s no rebellion, there’s no nothing. They vote it in, which is what happens in real life.'"
It's definitely interesting to get this sort of insight from Lucas, and it's easy enough to see what he was going for with the Star Wars prequels, even if his execution was flawed. Love or hate them, they were a financial success, and helped spawn The Clone Wars and some great characters fans adore to this very day.
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Star Wars TV shows we want to see on Disney+!
10. Darth Plagueis
These TV shows have the opportunity to delve into any time period, and heading back to the time of Darth Plagueis could be very exciting. The Sith Lord was responsible for training Darth Sidious (better known to fans as Emperor Palpatine), and Lucasfilm would be wise to not only delve into Plagueis' past, but also the origin of the man who would eventually betray him
Whether casual viewers could get on board with a show devoted entirely to villains is hard to say, but getting our first real look inside the world of the Sith and seeing the young Palpatine develop into the villain we all know from the both the Star Wars prequels and original trilogy would be satisfying. This could also fill in some of the gaps from The Rise of Skywalker!
If you've read the Expanded Universe novel revolving around Plagueis and Palpatine, then you'll be all too aware of the fact this series could take us to some dark places and be truly great.
Thanks to The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels, plenty of gaps in Maul's history have been covered. We know how he returned from the "dead," and how he ultimately fell to Master Obi-Wan Kenobi, but there are still parts of his life which remain a mystery to fans of this Galaxy Far, Far Away.
That's mostly what happened between The Clone Wars and Solo: A Star Wars Story, and then that movie and Rebels. That's not a huge period of time, but we do need some Crimson Dawn answers!
Following Maul as he takes charge of that villainous group would also address some of the unanswered questions we have from Solo's shocking ending, and we're sure Lucasfilm (and more specifically Dave Filoni) could find a way to really make this an essential part of the character's story.
8. Young Princess Leia
Exploring Princess Leia’s younger years in a TV series could work really well, even if those were briefly touched on in Rogue One and Star Wars Rebels. Her late teens/early twenties would be ideal, but we're sure the future Resistance leader had some adventures on Alderaan.
It was clear from the moment we met her that Leia could handle herself (and that she had some history interacting with the Empire), so there’s a lot of ground which could be covered in a series where she’s the lead. Female-led Star Wars TV shows do appear to be a priority for Disney+, hence why Doctor Aphra and Ashoka Tano are rumoured to be getting spinoffs, so this could fit in nicely.
Following in Carrie Fisher's footsteps won't be an easy feat for any young actress, however...
7. Darth Vader
If James Earl Jones would be willing to commit a lot of time to once again provide Darth Vader’s voice, this could be truly special (he's happily reprised the role a few times in recent years).
The Marvel comic books have addressed what became of Anakin Skywalker post-Revenge of the Sith (and between the events of the original trilogy), but there are definitely more stories to be told, and if a show like this were to give Hayden Christensen the opportunity to return, that would be even better.
Honestly, this could be as simple as following Vader on a random mission for Emperor Palpatine, but providing the story is strong enough, it stands a chance of adding more depth to the iconic villain. If that further explains his motivations, and why he eventually returned to the Light, then it would be a win.
6. Mos Eisley
Just like Batman prequel series Gotham explored the war between cops and gangsters before Bruce Wayne ever suited up as the Dark Knight, there’s a lot of potential for a TV series focusing on Tatooine’s underground. We’ve reached a point where the Hutts could easily be brought to life on the small screen, and there are many directions a show based here could follow.
Either way, limiting the action to Tatooine would be a sensible way to keep the action contained, and there are quite literally countless possibilities for the different cultures this series could explore...if we're lucky, it could even bring back the Podraces from The Phantom Menace!
Tatooine is obviously a location we've visited a fair few times (even recently in The Mandalorian), but that doesn't mean there aren't still stories to tell and new characters to focus on. Just how necessary this will be after Obi-Wan Kenobi debuts is hard to say, but Lucasfilm could even head much further back into the past in order to tell a truly original, standalone story here.
The Stormtroopers were always faceless canon fodder in the original Star Wars trilogy and didn’t exactly gain much in the way of personalities when they were turned into clones in the prequels. The Force Awakens went some way in changing that by introducing us to Finn, but that was about it.
Following a small team of these soldiers could result in a fun series, especially if the Rebels are portrayed as the villains (in the eyes of those working for the Empire at least) or the Stormtroopers we follow are shown to be conflicted about their actions. It really wouldn’t matter when this one was set, as it could work before, during, or even after the original trilogy with The First Order.
The Mandalorian showed us how enjoyable this could be with the two Scout Troopers who scooped up The Child, and with the right story, Lucasfilm could deliver an absolute winner here.
4. Han Solo
Given the way it underperformed at the box office, there's no way that we're getting a Solo: A Star Wars Story sequel. However, just because that won't come blasting into theaters doesn't mean Han Solo's early years couldn't continue to be explored, this time on the small screen.
If there's not enough content there for a Maul TV show, his story could very easily be incorporated into this show, especially as things were left on something of a cliffhanger with Qi'ra.
Solo was definitely hardened by the time we met him in A New Hope, and witnessing the death of the woman he loved at the hands of Maul would explain that. This only needs to be a limited series, but it's one Lucasfilm and Disney+ would be wise to give those fans desperate to see the iconic smuggler's story continue as there are still a lot of major gaps to fill in here.
3. Boba Fett (& Captain Rex?)
Boba Fett was once set to get his own movie, but those plans changed, and he's now expected to return in The Mandalorian season two. Needless to say, that show is unlikely to explain what became of him during the events of Return and the Jedi and this TV show, so a TV series could very easily tackle that.
However, if it is somehow addressed, then exploring what happened to Boba after he crossed paths with Din Djarin makes perfect sense. Bear in mind that The Clone Wars established that the bounty hunter had a good side, so he could very easily fill the role of an anti-hero who sets off on his own adventures.
If we had to choose, then Boba will be joined by Captain Rex, a "brother" or "uncle" of sorts to the cloned son of Jango Fett. That's a dynamic we're confident would be an absolute blast.
2. Luke Skywalker
Picking up with Luke Skywalker before he first wielded his father’s lightsaber could be a lot of fun or extremely boring; it’s hard to say. It certainly wouldn’t be a bad thing to follow some of his adventures on Tatooine, and a number of familiar characters could be recast with younger actors, making this series extremely rewarding for longtime fans.
Then again, that's arguably going to be the job of Obi-Wan Kenobi, so why not head down a far more interesting route by recasting Mark Hamill and following his post-Return of the Jedi adventures?
Set years before his nephew is born, Luke attempting to find Exegol could be a blast, while there are no doubt other stories which could be explored as the Jedi Knight picks up the pieces after his father's death and the apparent fall of Emperor Palpatine. Who should play him? The Falcon and The Winter Soldier star Sebastian Stan would be a great choice!
There was a lot to love about Solo: A Star Wars Story, but an argument could definitely be made that it was Donald Glover's Lando Calrissian who stole the show. With that in mind, he's probably most deserving of a spinoff series, and recent rumours have pointed to that being the case.
We're sure that Lando and Han crossed paths at some point after the smuggler managed to get his hands on the Millennium Falcon during that fateful game of Sabaac, so after a series of adventures following Lando, those dangling plot threads with Qi'ra and Maul could be addressed in the final few episodes, finally providing some closure to fans wanting a Solo sequel.
Honestly, if Disney+ don't call this The Calrissian Chronicles, it would be a major, wasted opportunity.