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BTS Notes & Quotes on the changing Star Wars Saga 1975-2012

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Darth_Nub, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. Tosche_Station

    Tosche_Station Jedi Knight star 2

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    Feb 9, 2015
    Was the second draft of ESB - specifically the Father Vader claim - really a change per se , from previous drafts?
     
  2. darklordoftech

    darklordoftech Force Ghost star 6

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    Sep 30, 2012
    The post you responded to is from before I received an answer. Notice the date that it was posted.
     
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  3. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Ah, my bad. Sorry. :oops:
     
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  4. Lt. Hija

    Lt. Hija Jedi Master star 4

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    Dec 8, 2015
    Don't want to sound like a nitpicker but before anyone gets a wrong impression, I'd like to clarify that "Coruscant" was a Timothy Zahn Invention. I remember him being somewhat happy that one of his creations made it into "Canon".

    IIRC, "Had Abbadon" was the name Lucas had intented for the Imperial capital unless that concept was dropped on behalf of Zahn's "Coruscant".
     
  5. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    The Imperial city-planet was going to be "Ton-Muund" (another Lucas name) for the Leigh Brackett draft of ESB, and "Had Abbadon" when it showed up in early ROTJ drafts.

    "Alderaan" was the city-world's name in the Journal of the Whills and later 1973 story synopsis, but from the '74 rough draft to the August 1975 third draft, that name was used instead for a Bespin-like world with a floating cloud city, albeit still under the Imperial aegis. In the rough draft, the cloud city on Alderaan was the imperial capital, but in the second and third drafts, Alderaan was a prison planet and a headquarters for the Sith Order, in the vein of Salusa Secundus from Dune.
     
  6. Darth_Nub

    Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Apr 26, 2009

    Correct - 'Coruscant' was an invention of Timothy Zahn (published in 1991 in Heir to the Empire) that was accepted completely by the 1990s EU and eventually became 100% official with the release of TPM. I suspect that GL accepted the name once Zahn's Thrawn Trilogy and the Dark Empire comic series had become successful, i.e. by 1993, when he sat down to write the PT.
    (Just to muddy the waters, however - Dark Empire, in which the Imperial Capital is named as 'Coruscant', was written and illustrated earlier than Zahn's Heir to the Empire - it was originally intended to be published by Marvel Comics in 1989/1990, but Marvel decided they weren't interested in picking up SW again, so it was eventually published by Dark Horse in 1992.
    Did Zahn actually come up with the name first? I'm guessing it was Zahn's creation, but there is that possibility that it wasn't, given the timeframes. It might have been GL's idea all along, or maybe first suggested by Tom Veitch, who wrote Dark Empire)

    Prior to the 1990s EU, the Imperial Capital had never been publicly named - the closest to an official nod was in the 1995 publication The Illustrated Star Wars Galaxy, in which it was simply referred to as 'Imperial Center'. All other names attributed to the planet by GL or LFL were in script drafts - none of which could be accepted as final, as the planet never appeared in, or was even referred to in the OT.
     
  7. Xammer

    Xammer Jedi Master star 1

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    Jan 31, 2009
    It was actually "Imperial Planet" before Zahn. "Imperial Center" was a later invention -- it was the name that Palpatine's Empire gave Coruscant (in Legends) shortly after the proclamation of the New Order.

    "Just to make it clear, I did not invent the planet…George Lucas had invented the planetwide city a long time ago. When I was starting the Thrawn Trilogy, they told me to coordinate with the West End Games source material, and they had it listed as the Imperial Planet. Well nobody names a planet 'Imperial Planet,' so I thought it needed a name, so I picked the word that means glittering: 'Coruscant.' Apparently, when it came time to choose a name [for the films], people persuaded George to go with Coruscant and be done with it. So I felt very vindicated -- the tail wagging the dog. It was an honor to be slipped into the movies this way." (Timothy Zahn)

    The thing is, Dark Empire actually uses this old designation -- you can actually see it in its opening pages:

    [​IMG]

     
  8. Darth_Nub

    Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Apr 26, 2009
    Well, that answers that. Great finds.:)

    Guessing that LFL was just playing it safe/keeping their options open by not naming the planet Coruscant in The Illustrated Star Wars Galaxy in 1995.
    That frame from Dark Empire looks like something they missed - the fact that 'Imperial Planet' is in bold seems to suggest that it was the actual name at the time, rather than just a throwaway reference to the planet being the centre of the Empire.
     
  9. MauiMisfit

    MauiMisfit Jedi Youngling star 1

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    Dec 29, 2015
    I just started reading TSHOSW and its interesting to see that the things Lucas would have done if unchecked to ESB and RotJ were EXACTLY what he did in the PT to many people's dismay.
     
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  10. Ord-Mantell70

    Ord-Mantell70 Jedi Master star 3

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    Mar 9, 2009
    What do you mean here ?

    I mean I've read SHOSW twice (and some chapters even more) and I don't get it.
     
  11. MauiMisfit

    MauiMisfit Jedi Youngling star 1

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    Dec 29, 2015

    Where people pointed out his shortcomings and inabilities to tell a tightly wrapped story.

    A particular instance that jumps to mind is that Lucas' script for Jedi had all the different characters at different places. It wasn't tight. Much like what happened in the prequels.

    It's not fresh in my mind ... so hard to draw exact things.
     
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  12. Ord-Mantell70

    Ord-Mantell70 Jedi Master star 3

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    Mar 9, 2009
    Oh...Alright. Thanks.

    Actually that's "unchecked" I had difficulties to deal with...Probably because English is not mother tongue (I'm French !)
     
  13. Darth_Nub

    Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Apr 26, 2009

    I think you'll find that the first person to acknowledge George Lucas's shortcomings as a writer is George Lucas, and he's harder on himself than anyone else. He's a great storyteller, but he's always admitted that hammering out scripts is the part of filmmaking he truly doesn't enjoy. With the PT, he had some help, but it was a bit too late in the day for the script doctors on TPM & AOTC (allegedly Carrie Fisher for TPM, Jonathan Rosenbaum on AOTC) to save some pretty undercooked writing. Lawrence Kasdan actually turned him down for TPM.
    On ROTS, playwright Tom Stoppard supposedly did some uncredited work on the later draft(s), but that was the storyline which needed the least work anyway - it occupied something like 80% of GL's original backstory.

    Totally different to the writing process for the OT, when GL spent three years writing The Star Wars, during which time he was constantly asking the opinions of his friends and colleagues, and then simply employed writers for ESB & ROTJ to adapt his outlines and rough drafts. He tried to go it alone for the PT, and it did show. Should have listened to one of his cinematic idols, Akira Kurosawa:

     
  14. Ord-Mantell70

    Ord-Mantell70 Jedi Master star 3

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    Mar 9, 2009
    Never heard of those script polishing on the PT movies before.

    Only knew about Jonathan Hales' late contribution on AOTC.

    Where does that come from ?
     
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  15. Darth_Nub

    Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Apr 26, 2009

    Yeesh, I meant Jonathan Hales.

    As for the other two - internet (yeah, I know), but Stoppard's name came up in an interview with Hayden Christensen a couple of years ago, IIRC, and after a quick look around at the time, I was pretty convinced he did do some work on ROTS.
    Carrie Fisher's purely a rumour, but it's been a very persistent one.

    Given the non-union status of LFL productions, definitive answers about uncredited work could be hard to come by - I'm pretty sure Carrie Fisher would have been an SGA member at the time.
     
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  16. only one kenobi

    only one kenobi Jedi Master star 4

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    Nov 18, 2012
    I'm hoping that somebody can shed some light on a question I have. Someone has just claimed, in a discussion, that during the making of ROTJ Lucas had objected to, or had objections to, having Anakin appear as a ghost. Is there any factual basis to this claim? (it seems unlikely, as it is in the context that Lucas "always " had in mind that Vader was a monster....but I recall him saying that the scenes showed that far from being a monster he was just a broken old man)
     
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  17. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    The Making of ROTJ says that Lucas initially didn't plan to have Anakin show up as a ghost -- only Ben and Yoda. However, Howard Kazanjian suggested that Anakin's redeemed spirit be included in the finale as well. Lucas initially was reluctant, but eventually came around (by which time, ironically, Kazanjian had begun to have qualms about the ethics of putting Darth Vader's ghost on a par with the other Jedi).

    However, in Lucas' initial handwritten draft scripts for ROTJ, Anakin Skywalker did appear, being restored to physical flesh-and-blood life along with Ben Kenobi (and Yoda, in one of the drafts). This version of Anakin was "an old man," Rinzler notes, presumably around Sebastian Shaw's age.
     
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  18. darklordoftech

    darklordoftech Force Ghost star 6

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    Sep 30, 2012
    I personally don't think Anakin should have been a ghost because ANH made it clear that he's unfamiliar with the ability. Additionally, it lead to the whole Shaw vs. Hayden mess.
     
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  19. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Perhaps that was one reason why GL initially didn't have Anakin show up at the end of ROTJ?

    In any event, I do think Kazanjian's advice was good, since the appearance of Anakin's ghost furthers the narrative arc of the film. It works in the same way the revelation of Father Vader works in ESB -- because it fits with the ideas presented by the film so far.
     
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  20. Ord-Mantell70

    Ord-Mantell70 Jedi Master star 3

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    Mar 9, 2009
    That's really the most bewildering here.

    I mean, from ESB, Ben Kenobi appears as a ghost. And then, in ROTJ, everybody's eventually resurrected from the dead...

    Is there further details about this in The Making of ROTJ or elsewhere ?
     
  21. Nibelung

    Nibelung Jedi Padawan star 2

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    Apr 18, 2017
    Here Lucas describes film as a medium that combines traditional music, theater, and literature: a "total work of art," what Richard Wagner called a Gesamtkunstwerk.
     
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