Zahns silence on 2, is it contridicting his ideals?

Discussion in 'Literature' started by chissdude10, Mar 17, 2002.

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  1. jade-sabre Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2000
    star 2
    Why do people here at the boards think that Lucas and Zahn are having some kind of feud over the SW universe. Lucas was very happy with the books Zahn wrote. Zahn is a big SW fan. He admits that he wish he had more info. on the prequels when he wrote his books so he could make the books more consistent with Lucas' vision, but Lucas hadn't come up with all the particulars of the new movies yet. There were no scripts written, just ideas in his head.

    Zahn is NOT sitting at home saying, "Why didn't George consult me in the new movies." Lucas is NOT in his office saying, "I will show Tim up by contradicting his work in these new movies."

    Lucas is making the movies he wants to make and Zahn is writing new novels he wants to write.
  2. jedi_storyteller Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Dec 1, 2001
    And here I thought that he was silent because he's in the middle of writing more books. I did hear that he was going to do some pre-RotJ books, but most of the people I know want him to do the last few NJO books. I think that GL proved that he agreed with Zahns books by giving the name of the Imerial Center Coruscant, a name that Zahn created. I didn't think that he was that vocal during the filming and release of EpI...

    And don't be dising VotF...that is on my list of fav's along with I, Jedi and Starfighters of Adumar...
  3. Kier_Nimmion Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 9, 2000
    star 5

    DJJB,

    I'm just saying, its unethical and almost selfish (IMHO) to pay someone to write for you, have the fans take that in and then to completely ignore it and contradict it.

    Hum, at the same time do we expect George to be aware of and take into account everything that happens in the Expanded Universe and write around it or through it? If we did, and I really believe that some people do, i.e. those who think that Zahn should have written the entire Prequel Trilogy, isn't that selfish of us?

    If he's not going to be bothered to officially endorse and abide by things written in his universe, he shouldn't give out the license for author's to play around in his universe to begin with.

    That's the great thing of having total control of something you created- can keep or nuke whatever you want.

    (NB: I have NEVER been one to bad mouth GL, or call him greedy or only interested in the $$. I have no opinion on this, and really don't care at all. Just saying, I'm in no way a GL-basher; he created this huge part of my life and the lives of thousands of other hardline fans and millions of viewers alike. )

    Actually, I'll bad mouth him any time I think he's screwed up, and he has a couple of times. No one should have to apologize for it.

  4. JadedofMara Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2001
    star 4
    DJJB...i totally understand what you are saying...i just think that people get SO TOUCHY about GL contradicting authors when

    a) most of the books CAN be made to fit around the movies...nothing so far except for some dates in TTT and VoTF have been contradicted by the sequels

    b) there is just too much EU out there for him to factor in all of it and still transmit his OWN vision and his OWN ideas onto the screen.

    Keir...George has screwed up. But we all love him anyway. :D :p
  5. darthjarjarbinks Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 3, 2000
    star 4
    Kier- I don't expect Gl to license a concept then contradict it.

    He licensed TTT and HoT, he therefore, at that time, (for all intents and purposes) approves of TTT and HoT and therefore he should take pains not to contradict it.

    Especially TTT- this was possibly the most heavily internally-scrutinised peice of EU material to date. LFL were on Zahn's back all the way, telling him to change things because it might not fit in with GL's vision (ie- the Noghri were originally going to be called "siths"). Its not like this is just some 'minor' aspect of the EU that slipped past. It was and is a big deal.

    JadeofMara- but from your point a), don't you think it is logically to conclude that, just as "books CAN be made to fit around the movies", movies can be made to fit around books? I know, I know "its george's universe" and all but I refer to all my previous reasons why this just doesn't seem right.

    I don't expect GL or anyone in anyway to license a concept and then contradict it. In a way, in allowing Zahn to write a book, he is selling Zahn a peice of his intellectual property and allowing him to add to that. In my opinion, that now forms part of GL's intellectual property and should not be dismissed from continuity intentionally.

    And your second point, JOM, I understand and to a large extent agree with you. But its GL that has dug that hole for himself by selling the rights to do so many things in the EU- the better part of a hundred books, hundreds of comics etc...

    But he need not factor in all of it, only that which he could possibly contradict. And especially not that which has formed such a backbone of EU literature as the TTT has.

    People can argue its quality (Genghis for example) yet people can not argue the place it holds in the EU community.

    But I do see where you are all coming from, this is just my 2c.

  6. Sturm Antilles Former Manager

    Member Since:
    Jun 22, 2000
    star 6
    DarthJarJar --

    It's not George's job to work "around the books". It's the authors job to work around the movies. And it's the job of the Lucasfilm Licensing editors to make things fit between the two.

    End of story. It doesn't matter if Lucas, through his companies, paid for the work of said writer.
  7. Leto II Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 23, 2000
    star 6
    Here's a little interview that I dug up fresh from the archives, which was given circa Fall, 1998. This also gives no small insight into the mindsets that the Powers-That-Were possessed vis-a-vis the prequels, and Zahn's own contributions to them, directly or in a roundabout fashion:

    ======

    Star Wars Per-Zahn-ified

    Interview by Jeff Carter

    10/98

    -----

    Tim Zahn is hands down the most widely acknowledged favorite author among fans in the STAR WARS Universe. ECHO STATION takes you behind the scenes with him in this new interview!

    The time was summer, 1991. The Gulf War had just ended, Arsenio Hall ruled late nights, "[The] Silence of the Lambs" racked up Oscar gold, Nirvana was about to unleash grunge on the world, and Star Wars...well...

    Star Wars was dead.

    Dead and forgotten, that is, until it's life essence was suddenly rekindled and blasted into the stratosphere of popular culture once again with the release of a single book.

    It appeared on store shelves innocently enough in that fateful summer with little fanfare to speak of, but once word got out about it's breathtaking pacing, well-written characters, intense drama, and blazing action, Timothy Zahn's "Heir To the Empire" quickly became an enormous wake-up call to the Star Wars-starved masses to rise from their 6 year slumber and usher in a new era for George Lucas' beloved space saga. "Heir to the Empire" debuted in the top ten on the New York Times bestseller list and remained cemented there for over 29 straight weeks. With "Heir" and its follow-ups, "Dark Force Rising" and "The Last Command," Hugo-award winning author Timothy Zahn opened the floodgates and blazed the trail for the countless numbers of Star Wars novels, role-playing games, sourcebooks, comics, video games, CD-ROMs, action figures, t-shirts and mountains of other merchandise that line retail shelves.

    Two of Zahn's characters, the brilliant Imperial tactician Grand Admiral Thrawn, and the beautiful, fiery-tempered, Force-user Mara Jade have entrenched themselves firmly in the Star Wars universe, just as easily recognized as Han Solo or Darth Vader. "Heir to the Empire" is a true milestone in the dizzying evolution of the Star Wars phenomenon, an important first step that led to George Lucas announcing that he indeed would be continuing the Star Wars saga with a new trilogy of films that would tell the tale of Anakin Skywalker's fall to the dark side of the Force. Since the release and wild success of his three Star Wars novels, Zahn has continued to be one of the most accomplished and respected science-fiction fantasy writers in the business. Zahn wrote an original trilogy of books, known as the "Conqueror's Trilogy," a "Star Lord" comic miniseries for Marvel, and has just recently finished his long journey through the Star Wars universe with the release of "Mara Jade: By the Emperor's Hand," a comic series for Dark Horse, and the final two novels of the Bantam Star Wars saga, "Specter of the Past" and "Vision of the Future." Timothy Zahn has enjoyed an amazingly prosperous decade, and is showing no signs of slowing down. In this exclusive ECHO STATION interview, we sit down with the man to find out his thoughts on writing in the wild, wonderful world of Star Wars, how he really feels about "The Phantom Menace," and his reaction to being called the...

    SAVIOR OF STAR WARS...

    ES: Tim, many credit you with bringing Star Wars out of a so-called "dark age" when "Heir to the Empire" was released and stayed on the New York Times bestsellers list for 29 weeks. You helped to usher in a Star Wars "renaissance" of sorts that unleashed countless novels, CD-ROM's, video games, and merchandise. How do you react to being called the "savior" of Star Wars?

    TZ: Though I appreciate your praise, I hardly consider myself to be the "savior" of Star Wars in any respect. I didn't revive Star Wars so much as I simply tapped into the interest that was already
    simmering below the surface. The fact that the first 60,000-copy printing vanished within a week shows that it wa
  8. Knight1192 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
    star 6
    Dead and Forgotten? WEG was still putting out Star Wars RPG material, as well as Solitary adventure "novels", and Marvel had a project in the works that would end up being transfered to Dark Horse when they got the liscence called Dark Empire. Star Wars was not that dead and forgotten as some would have us believe.
  9. darthjarjarbinks Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 3, 2000
    star 4
    Sturm- I know its not his job as creator of the star wars universe, but it is his responsibility to try and maintain something resembling continuity where possible.

    More importantly- It is also his responsibility to TAKE responsibility for the works which he licenses- this means accepting all which they entail and all the content which they convey. Its just a matter professionalism

    Its a moral responsibility, not a legal one- a social responsibility and a PROFESSIONAL responsibility that if you create some intellectual property and then PAY someone to build on that, you should adhere to that which they create.

    Thats just my opinion. If you were to pay someone to make something for you (so that, ultimately, you are benefited) it borders on greed (which I have NEVER accused GL of) to dismiss that once your money comes in.
  10. The Gatherer Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 2, 1999
    star 6
    I absolutely *LOVE* Tim Zahn and his contribution to the Star Wars mythos, however, he doesn't have the right to dictate the content of Episode II...

    HOWEVER, agreeing with Sturm, I absolutely *LOVE* how Episode II, on face value, is not contradicting Tim's writing! :)
  11. Kier_Nimmion Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 9, 2000
    star 5

    He licensed TTT and HoT, he therefore, at that time, (for all intents and purposes) approves of TTT and HoT and therefore he should take pains not to contradict it.

    Yes, but his ideas and views come first, then those of his staff- artists, designers, etc. I can say with pretty good odds of being right that he doesn't want to slot himself into the guidelines of the books.

    Especially TTT- this was possibly the most heavily internally-scrutinised peice of EU material to date. LFL were on Zahn's back all the way, telling him to change things because it might not fit in with GL's vision (ie- the Noghri were originally going to be called "siths"). Its not like this is just some 'minor' aspect of the EU that slipped past. It was and is a big deal.

    Yes, but, IIRC he was told not to touch the Clone Wars at all, and he went ahead any way and slipped it in there. I don't thing George gives a whit about continuity with anything but the six films- if he runs roughshod over a book(s) then it's our problem, not his.

    The Sturminator,

    It's not George's job to work "around the books". It's the authors job to work around the movies. And it's the job of the Lucasfilm Licensing editors to make things fit between the two.

    This is it exactly. I'd like to have this framed and placed on every Zahn Star Wars book fan's bedroom wall so they can see it every day.

    Rick: (Reads some script pages) George, you can't do that, it contradicts Heir to the Empire.

    George: And this is important to me how exactly?

    Rick: Well, you should follow the books, George...

    KA-ZAP! FWOOSH!!

    George: (To intern) Bring out Rick McCallum Clone #347.

    TG,

    I absolutely *LOVE* Tim Zahn and his contribution to the Star Wars mythos, however, he doesn't have the right to dictate the content of Episode II...

    If you're done with your Zahngasm, I agree. Not only does he not have the right to, he isn't anyway. I don't know where fans get off thinking Zahn somehow has more right or knowhow on how to create Star Wars than Lucas does.

  12. darthjarjarbinks Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 3, 2000
    star 4
    Gatherer: "he doesn't have the right to dictate the content of Episode II..."

    I don't think that Zahn presumes he has that power, nor, to my knowledge, does he presume to exercise that right. But I haven't exactly kept up to date on Zahn's PR efforts of late.

    And about not GL thus far not contradicting Zahn's work- I'll have to take your word for it :D -spoiler free till episode 3.

  13. darthjarjarbinks Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 3, 2000
    star 4
    Kier...

    "Yes, but his ideas and views come first..."

    Agreed, however I feel that, in giving someone the license to write in the GFFA, he automatically concedes to them creative freedoms and thus is bound to adopt all that is produced as HIS OWN views. It may not be very practical, considering the amount of EU content out there, but it is a matter of principle, I feel. I know he can't keep track of everything (and by all accounts makes little effort to), but thats where his continuity people step in and say "george, thats been covered- THIS is what YOU ALLOWED TO HAPPEN."

    Thats the point really, he ALLOWED all these plot points to happen, and I think that means something.

    "Yes, but, IIRC he was told not to touch the Clone Wars at all, and he went ahead any way and slipped it in there. I don't thing George gives a whit about continuity with anything but the six films- if he runs roughshod over a book(s) then it's our problem, not his."

    I don't think he slipped anything in anywhere without LFL's absolute consent. He was sent back chapter after chapter and told "this you can keep... this has to go."

    If they didn't say "this has to go" then its something which the continuity folk at LFL MUST IN ALL GOOD CONSCIENCE FOR THE SAKE OF CONTINUITY AND ALL THATS HOLY AND UNHOLY ALIKE say "GL...this you can keep... but *this* has to go"

    Last thing...

    "I don't know where fans get off thinking Zahn somehow has more right or knowhow on how to create Star Wars than Lucas does."

    Please, kier, so I can sleep tonight tell me I haven't conveyed this in my posts and that you are referring to others. :_|
    :_|
    :_|


    Zahn has no more right than Lucas- in fact he obviously has far less- in fact he now has NONE until LFL decide to give him another book to write. I agree totally.

    I just think that when something is created, it should (as far as is possible) be kept intact.

    What if George made up something then went and contradicted it. He'd have thousands of fans screaming "WHY?! this makes no sense!" I am a proponant of the notion that in giving the license to write a novel etc, and then allowing it to be published, GL IS making something up and should accordingly not contradict it. Its like writing by proxy or something. I dunno...

    Anyways, thats my thoughts.

    djjb
  14. The Gatherer Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 2, 1999
    star 6
    Hmmm, Zahngasm - that is a new terminology to the Star Wars fandom! :)
  15. loser_fett Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 5, 2001
    star 2
    As a matter of fact, Mike Stackpole and I are planning to pitch another 6-parter to Dark Horse early next year, a story about Baron Fel and Grand Admiral Thrawn in the Unknown Regions.

    Did this ever see the light of day?
  16. PrinceXizor Former TF.N Foreign Book Cover Staff

    VIP
    Member Since:
    Jul 4, 2001
    star 5
    Nope, unfortunately not.

    Hum... Maybe fortunately. Could have been good. Could have been less good if they'd let themselves have Thrawngasms and Felgasms.
  17. CeeWulf Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2002
    star 4
    darthjarjarbinks wrote:

    I'm just saying, its unethical and almost selfish (IMHO) to pay someone to write for you, have the fans take that in and then to completely ignore it and contradict it.

    Unethical? Selfish? That is extreme in the most extreme sense of those word.

    I'm sure the writers are told ahead of time or understand that, since Lucas is writing the prequels, that idea or notions developed in the books may be contradicted. It's Lucas' creation, and he is NOT beholden to other writers on what he can or cannot do.

    I'm not saying he shouldn't blatently contradicts events for the heck of it, but if he has a good idea then he should go with it. If it contradicts, so be it. It's his universe and he has the right to do what he wants.
  18. loser_fett Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 5, 2001
    star 2
    Thanks Xizor. It would have been cool story to see if Zahn and Stackpole held themselves in check. (Thrawngasms LOL!).
  19. Resolute Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 11, 2002
    star 1
    Shouldn't this be in the author's forum? Oh well, so long as its here.

    Zahn is THE best writer ever to grace the EU with his presence. I don't care what Ghenghis says, I don't even care if he's right. I care about the fact that Timothy Zahn's literary talent considerably outpaces that of even Troy Denning or Michael Stackpole. So what if some of his stuff is contradictory? Like no other author has ever made a typo, or made an error in judgement! I bet if I counted up all the contradictions in the Bible they'd outnumber EU miscaclculations 5:1!

    The simple fact is, without Zahn, there would be no Talon Karrde, no Mara Jade, no Jaina or Jacen Solo! The list goes on and on! Count how many others those characters have met in their adventures, and you'll see that almost all of you oh your names to Zahn! Chissdude, _TenelKa_, Jedi_Jaina_Durron_, Jag_Fel I could go on forever. For crying out loud, Coruscant wouldn't be coruscant and there would be no Rank of Grand Admiral!

    We all owe Zahn the respect he deserves, he's done so much for us, why don't we at least acknowledge it?
  20. Jades Fire Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 8, 1998
    star 4
    This has got to be one of the stupidest threads ever. Has it ever occurred to anyone that maybe Zahn hasn't seen Episode 2 yet? Who has seen E2 yet, other than RAS who hasn't seen it but novelized it? Why should Zahn have something to say about a movie that's not even out? Besides Zahn knew exactly what the rules were -- it was Uncle George's sandbox and if George wanted to do something different that was his perogative as the owner/creator or SW. Zahn has even said as much.

    [face_plain]
  21. chissdude10 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 26, 2001
    star 5
    Only admins can post in the author forum...
  22. wild_karrde Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 8, 1999
    star 7
    There are no contradictions that anybody knows of, aside from the dating which can be easily explained, and has been.

    <<Who has seen E2 yet, other than RAS who hasn't seen it but novelized it? >>

    Harry "AICN" Knowles has, apparently.

    wk
  23. JadedofMara Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2001
    star 4
    Zahngasms....LOL.

    Keir...I have often wondered that myself...how many of clones of Rick McCallum ARE there wandering around...:D

    Jades Fire...good point. I love Zahn, I think that he is the best thing that ever happened to the Star Wars EU...but I think that its SO SILLY to think of him as one of the "leaders" in the making of the Star Wars MOVIES...movies and books are 2 totally different forums, even when they both relate to Star Wars.

    Thanks for that interview!

    On this note...an interesting thread just appeared in the EUC..."Did TZ help GL write ROTJ?"
    :D :D :D :D
  24. Kier_Nimmion Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 9, 2000
    star 5

    Resolute,


    For someone who quotes Hawking and 'understanding' in their sig file, you have a remarkably closed view on the universe.

    Zahn is THE best writer ever to grace the EU with his presence. I don't care what Ghenghis says, I don't even care if he's right.

    I rest my case.

    I care about the fact that Timothy Zahn's literary talent considerably outpaces that of even Troy Denning or Michael Stackpole.

    Nope. Stackpole writes better military fiction, Denning does better characters.

    So what if some of his stuff is contradictory? Like no other author has ever made a typo, or made an error in judgement!

    I don't call flagrant abuse of established characters, i.e. the castration of Luke or the scuttling of the Jedi a typo or an error in juedgement.

    I bet if I counted up all the contradictions in the Bible they'd outnumber EU miscaclculations 5:1!

    Where did this come from?

    The simple fact is, without Zahn, there would be no Talon Karrde, no Mara Jade, no Jaina or Jacen Solo!

    I wasn't aware Zahn named or even created the twins. And honestly, no Mara jade would not cause me to lose sleep, though I must admit, I like Talon Kaarde best of all of Zahn's characters.

    The list goes on and on! Count how many others those characters have met in their adventures, and you'll see that almost all of you oh your names to Zahn! Chissdude, _TenelKa_, Jedi_Jaina_Durron_, Jag_Fel I could go on forever.

    So all the good names were taken, so what? :)

    For crying out loud, Coruscant wouldn't be coruscant and there would be no Rank of Grand Admiral!

    No, Coruscant would be Had Abaddon, just as Lucas had originally called it. As for the Grand Admiral concept, so...what?

    I would never deny Zahn's contributions to Star Wars as if they didn't exist, however I question their quality, and to some extent, their legitmacy.

  25. NarundiJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 8, 2001
    star 6
    Resolute, I agree with some of your things that we owe to Zahn, but saying that Jag Fel (a Stackpole creation) and Tenel Ka (a Kevin J Anderson and Rebecca Moesta creation) are Zahn's goes a bit too far.

    Jae Angel
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