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Saga The Origins of Luke's father - Annikin Starkiller, Anakin Skywalker, or Darth Vader?

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Tosche_Station, Mar 1, 2016.

  1. Nibelung

    Nibelung Jedi Padawan star 2

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    Apr 18, 2017
    Lucas may also have told her he was potentially *considering* having Vader be the same person as Anakin, and left it up to Brackett to see how she handled it.

    It would explain the sudden change in the storyline after Lucas read her script -- Brackett having Obi-Wan and Anakin both appear as Force ghosts made the problems of this approach clearly apparent -- as well as why LFL felt the need to suppress this bit of the transcript: it conflicted with the official Lucasfilm narrative that George Lucas always meant Vader and Anakin to be the same person all along.
     
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  2. Tosche_Station

    Tosche_Station Jedi Knight star 2

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    Feb 9, 2015
    Very interesting, this idea of her script pushing Lucas in the other direction - not toward them being the same person, but away from them being the same person instead. If indeed Lucas had considered the idea, this turnabout would signal a return to the 'status-quo' of the first film.

    (On a side note: I like how in this early version* of TESB, less things are left unresolved by film/story's end, than was the case with the final film.)

    *per the Lucas/Brackett story conferences, Lucas' story treatment, and the first draft (by Brackett)
     
  3. Tosche_Station

    Tosche_Station Jedi Knight star 2

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    Feb 9, 2015
    Something else occurred to me:

    Remember how Luke and Leia were cousins in the Second Draft of Star Wars, instead of siblings? Given that Luke was Annikin's* son....who on Utapau was Leia's father? Who was Luke's uncle, besides Owen? Perhaps Vader....? Was "Vader" (whatever be his original birth name) possibly another brother of Annikin in this draft?

    *or in more accurate terminology, "The Starkiller's" son

    Speaking of names/surnames, re: the whole was Lars a "real" last name: what if 'Starkiller' and 'Skywalker' were mere epithets, and not the actually family name?
     
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  4. The_Phantom_Calamari

    The_Phantom_Calamari Force Ghost star 5

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    Nov 10, 2011
    I've always maintained that while it's clear Anakin and Vader were originally intended to be separate individuals, there is nothing which precludes Lucas from having considered making Vader (separate from Anakin) Luke's true father at an earlier point than the written record indicates. I believe the fact that the Vader of a A New Hope is a Jedi-turned-cyborg, just as the father character in the original draft is, lends credence to this possibility having at least occurred to Lucas. From this view, the fact that Anakin's ghost appears to Luke in Brackett's draft is immaterial. Besides, Lucas himself admits to having gone back and forth in his mind with whether he really wanted to commit to the idea. The only way to prove Lucas a liar is to prove that he had truly never even considered the idea prior to his second draft of TESB, and that's not possible to prove. Moreover, I personally find the idea that he hadn't even considered the idea more unlikely than the alternative. Obviously, it was a notion which was capable of occurring to him--since, you know, it undeniably did occur to him. It's only the exact moment when it did that is in dispute.

    The idea that he sat down to write a new draft after Brackett's misfire and spontaneously generated the idea of Vader-as-father, with absolutely no cogitative antecedent, just rings intuitively false to me.
     
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  5. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jun 28, 2001

    If I remember, Leia wasn't Luke's cousin. That was just an identity that she assumed because she was living incognito. Basically like Padme using Padme Naberrie on Tatooine, but on Naboo and Coruscant, she's only addressed as Queen Amidala. As to Leia's father, I don't think Lucas ever got that far. He had a title of Princess of Ondos, for Leia. Also, Luke was about to kiss Leia before he leaves, but instead hugs her. So there was definitely no relation, only an open knowing of who she really was. Or at least in part. As to Vader, I still think that Darth Vader was still the name and not a title yet.

    And Owen Lars in this draft was no Jedi, but was a dear friend of the Starkiller and could teach the basics of Lightsaber training, but not Jedi Ashla training.
     
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  6. Nibelung

    Nibelung Jedi Padawan star 2

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    Apr 18, 2017
    That was also my conclusion (though it's never said explicitly in the script). In that draft, the Empire was particularly interested in hunting down the Starkiller family: Luke's father was a great Jedi & a leader of the Rebellion, and many of Luke's older brothers had also fought and died for the Rebel cause. It'd make sense if some of Luke's siblings were living under assumed identities.

    In other words, it's very possible that this was the first moment when Leia became Luke's sister.

    And they were going to hook up despite this. Cue the Wagner music.
     
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  7. Samuel Vimes

    Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master star 4

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    Sep 4, 2012
    I think making Vader = Anakin might have been in part due to Lucas deciding to kill Obi-Wan off in ANH.

    That wasn't the original plan but he felt that Obi-Wan didn't have much to do after the escape from the DS, so he killed him.
    That led to Lucas being forced to create Minch/Yoda as the person to train Luke
    And that character was probably pulled in part from another Kurosawa film, Dersu Uzala.

    So in the first Brackett draft, you had TWO ghosts, Obi-Wan and Luke's father. Plus Minch/Yoda.
    That is a bit redundant and Luke's father didn't have a very clear role in the story.
    So merging Luke's father and Vader, that streamlines the story and cuts down the number of characters.

    Had Obi-Wan not been killed, then who knows, maybe Vader would not have been Luke's father.

    Bye for now.
    The Guarding Dark
    [COLOR=rgba(255, 255, 255, 0.8)][/COLOR]
     
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  8. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jun 28, 2001

    Luke's siblings were, at that point, all male. So that kinda rules out the sibling angle. I think at that point Lucas was going to go back to his earlier idea about Leia, which was that she was a princess whose family is killed and she's in hiding. In the first draft of ANH, that sorta happens. Her parents are captured and implied to have been killed. Luke Skywalker and Annikin Starkiller must protect both Leia and her brothers, who are now the heirs to the throne. Since he was wanting to expand beyond the one script and leave the door open for more films, as well as focus fewer plot elements, it isn't surprising if he decided to revisit and earlier idea at a later date. In the second draft, Annikin has to rescue his brother and it is with the third draft that his brother is replaced with Leia. The idea of a sibling disappears at this point and doesn't resurface until the story meetings for TESB.

    Also, Lucas did consider having a resemblance between Luke and Leia at one point. So there was that.
     
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  9. The_Phantom_Calamari

    The_Phantom_Calamari Force Ghost star 5

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    Nov 10, 2011
    Another interesting point to consider is that at one point the story was about Luke rescuing his older brother Deak (the script opens with Deak fleeing from the Empire in his personal starship before being boarded and taken prisoner by Vader) from an Imperial installation. In later drafts Leia of course takes Deak's role. So what was originally a story about a boy rescuing his older brother becomes a story about a boy rescuing a girl who is a more mature and politically aware version of himself. It's illuminating to see how Lucas describes the relationship between the two characters at this early point:

    “It was at that moment,” says the writer, “that I came up with the idea that Luke and the princess are twins. I simply divided the character in two."
    ....
    “The princess is everything Luke wants to be,” Lucas says. “She is socially conscious, whereas he is thrown into things; intellectually, she is a strong leader, and he is just a kid.”

    -- The Making of Star Wars

    It's almost as if Lucas is knowingly being a bit sly here with his wording.
     
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  10. Nibelung

    Nibelung Jedi Padawan star 2

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    Apr 18, 2017
    I'm quite sure this was the idea for the Sith Lord villain in the second draft, but it wasn't Vader who was Luke's older brother: it would've been Prince Espaa Valorum, Vader's boss, who is mentioned by name at one point. Vader is actually killed flying his fighter into Han Solo's ship, kamikaze-style, during the Death Star trench run, so a different Sith villain would have to show up in sequels.

    And since the 1974 rough draft already featured the redemption arc of a Sith Lord named "Prince Valorum," his namesake in the 1975 rewrite is by far the best candidate for Luke's secret brother.
     
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  11. MeBeJedi

    MeBeJedi Force Ghost star 6

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    May 30, 2002

    A few paragraphs later, it says:

    An early character-costume sketch reveals how closely linked visually Luke and Leia
    were; though not explicitly stated as being twins, the idea was present in Lucas’s mind
    and may have been communicated as such to McQuarrie.
    [​IMG]
     
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  12. Tosche_Station

    Tosche_Station Jedi Knight star 2

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    Feb 9, 2015
    Keep in mind the whole midichlorian "fiasco" from the same book, where Rinzler years after the publication of the book admitted that those sections were interpolations made around 2006 or so.
     
  13. Nibelung

    Nibelung Jedi Padawan star 2

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    Apr 18, 2017
    Nonetheless, the fact that Ralph McQuarrie was drawing Luke and Leia as blondes with identical bowl cuts is certainly indicative of something.

    Undeniably the 1975 third draft has strong Arthurian parallels: Ben Kenobi, who holds Luke's father's sword in trust, has a mechanical hand, and went into hiding after the Jedi were defeated after the Battle of Condawn. This is pretty clearly based on Arthurian legend's Sir Bedivere, last survivor of the Battle of Camlann, who was the one to return Excalibur to the Lady of the Lake... and who, in the earliest Welsh tales, had only one hand.

    Of course, Arthur's greatest enemy Mordred was born from him unwittingly having sex with his sister Morgause. In other words, a Luke/Leia twincest theme at this point would actually be a logical progression of the narrative!
     
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  14. MeBeJedi

    MeBeJedi Force Ghost star 6

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    May 30, 2002
    Which book/section was that?
     
  15. The_Phantom_Calamari

    The_Phantom_Calamari Force Ghost star 5

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    Nov 10, 2011

    Nonetheless, I doubt the book includes fabricated McQuarrie sketches.
     
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  16. Samuel Vimes

    Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master star 4

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    Sep 4, 2012
    I don't know the page but there were some old notes of Lucas that talked about the nature of the Force and how certain people/aliens were better able to use it. Among those notes, one mentioned Midis.
    Which some took as proof that Lucas had midis in mind even back in the 70's.

    But Rinzler later admitted that the bit about the midis was NOT from the 70's but was a much more recent Lucas note and he had included it in the old stuff without making that clear.

    As for early sketches making Luke and Leia look similar.
    Not sure that means a lot. When the main character, Luke, was changed into a girl, that the design was mostly kept only with a changed gender. That makes some sense.
    Why fundamentally alter the design of the main character just because of gender?
    The Luke character was changed into a girl and had his name changed to Leia.
    Otherwise, from what I know, not that much changed about the character.
    And, again from what I know, the similar looking Luke/Leia was not supposed to be two characters in the same film.
    The Leia in the finished film does not look a whole lot like Luke and their ages were different in the script.

    Bye for now.
    Old Stoneface
     
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  17. MeBeJedi

    MeBeJedi Force Ghost star 6

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    May 30, 2002
    Interesting. There's also this little tidbit from the ANH novelization:

    Kenobi nodded. "I forget sometimes in whose presence I babble. Let us say
    simply that the force is something a Jedi must deal with. While it has never been
    properly explained, scientists have theorized it is an energy field generated by living
    things. Early man suspected its existence, yet remained in ignorance of its potential
    for millennia.
     
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  18. Nibelung

    Nibelung Jedi Padawan star 2

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    Apr 18, 2017
    Leia's age on film was never established until ROTJ. In fact, the 1975 third draft of SW (and even the shooting script), specifies that Leia is 16 years old and Luke is 20.

    But this is at the same time as Luke and Leia being visually identical. What gives?

    If Luke and Leia were related at that point, they were probably half-siblings born at different times. Such was the case with Arthur and Morgause in Arthurian legend, and with Siegmund and Sieglinde in Wagner's Die Walkure. In both cases still brother & sister (and in both cases they ended up getting it on).
     
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  19. The_Phantom_Calamari

    The_Phantom_Calamari Force Ghost star 5

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    Nov 10, 2011

    I don't think they were biologically related. They were thematic "twins." A "younger" twin and an "older" twin.

    At one point it seems Lucas was going to explore this concept with a pair of brothers (Luke and Deak), then when Luke briefly became a girl it was a sister-brother pair (girl Luke and Deak), but then Lucas dropped Deak and split Luke into a boy-girl pair with the sidelined character of Princess Leia from earlier drafts taking the role of the girl, wherein Luke and Leia became biologically unrelated but still embodied the same archetypal roles formerly occupied by the sibling pairs. During the writing of TESB Lucas seems to have toyed briefly with the idea of going back to the more literal paired sibling idea in the form of Nellith, perhaps being influenced by the male-female duality of the Luke/Leia pair, but the idea of making Leia the female sibling not occurring to him either due to the logistical hurdles involved in such a retcon or else just for reasons of creative inertia. By the time ROTJ came around Lucas was still interested in exploring this concept but didn't have time to introduce an entirely new character, and that's when the idea of making Luke's thematic "twin" his literal twin sister naturally occurred to him.

    That's my speculation anyway. What we're trying to do here is untangle something as twisted and convoluted as the creative process itself, which is a frustratingly non-linear thing (something which overly rigid analyses like those by Michael Kaminski so often miss).
     
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  20. Nibelung

    Nibelung Jedi Padawan star 2

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    Apr 18, 2017
    Extremely well said. =D=

    However, I'm not sure that Lucas would've restricted himself from exploring an incest plotline. As I noted above, the motif of brother/sister incest and its consequences shows up in Arthurian lore and Norse mythology, both of which were important sources for the backstory of Star Wars at this time.

    To give a similar example: We know from surviving McQuarrie storyboards that SW 1977 could've been an R-rated movie with onscreen nudity and violence, more in the vein of THX 1138 than the all-audiences film we got. However, if those sketches hadn't survived, how would we ever know that Lucas honestly considered having a topless, gun-toting Leia running around during the prison escape? We'd only have guesswork to go on rather than actual pen-and-ink drawings.

    Of course, even assuming such a brother/sister relationship was a potential story thread from 1975 onward, it was still just one of several embryonic possible storylines. The same as with Darth Vader's identity (Luke's older brother? his illegitimate father? his evil uncle? Ben Kenobi's secret son?).
     
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  21. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

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    Jun 28, 2001


    Lucas was still not set on them being related since the script and filmed scenes of TESB, include the more obvious romantic angles between Luke and Leia. Once the final edit of the film was made, where those scenes were excised, Lucas found that he had the wiggle room to make them related. And as he said, the more he thought of it, the more having them related made sense in a way. It would allow Luke to have an emotional connection to his sibling that would spark his anger and resolve the other that Yoda spoke of.
     
  22. Samuel Vimes

    Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master star 4

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    Sep 4, 2012
    Leia becoming the other and Luke's sister.

    I think it simply a matter of there begin no other option.

    The sister thing was initially a set up for the ST as was the emperor. But when making RotJ and Lucas was getting tired of SW he had to deal with those things.
    The emperor was pretty simple, have him appear as the big bad, turn Vader and have him kill the emperor.
    If Lucas did decide to make the ST at some point, he could just introduce a new villain.

    But the other was not so easy.
    RotJ already had a lot of characters, introducing a long lost sister in that mix would have been very difficult.
    So either he could just ignore the whole thing but that would be unsatisfying.
    Drop some more hints about her but that would mean that he must make the ST eventually.
    And as I said, Lucas was getting tired of SW. The PT had been talked about some and their existence had been confirmed with ep IV, V and VI. The ST was more vague and he could skip it.

    But that meant that the other had to be an already existing character. Even elevating a minor character like Wedge would take time.
    So who could he choose from?
    The droids are out of the question. Chewie the Jedi might be met with laughs.
    Lando had been a rather shady character in ESB and although he changed his ways, him as a Jedi? Iffy at best.
    Han? He had undergone a character change sure but the wisecracking scoundrel as a Jedi? Again iffy.
    Leia is really the only possible choice.

    Bye for now.
    The Guarding Dark
     
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  23. Nibelung

    Nibelung Jedi Padawan star 2

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    Apr 18, 2017
    Returning to the 1975 second draft discussion: I think it's probable that the "Princess of Ondos" idea for a sequel was about a royal house suppressed by the Empire (like Leia's family in the 1974 rough draft), with the titular Princess coming into the story as a love interest. With the 1975 draft's strong emphasis on Jedi bloodlines, it's also possible that the royal House of Ondos was even a family of covert Force-users in its own right.

    However, I think it's up for debate whether the Princess would turn out to be Leia Lars, who was raised as Luke's cousin under a false identity; or a new character yet to be introduced, who would be a love interest for Deak Starkiller, Luke's older brother. In the latter case, the most likely storyline for the Luke/Leia romance would be some sort of Wagnerian incest scenario.

    Once again, we see Lucas writing a film whose plot could proceed toward multiple different outcomes based on a single starting point. A vortex of possibilities - affecting not only future films but even the plot of potential prequels.
     
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  24. Nibelung

    Nibelung Jedi Padawan star 2

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    Apr 18, 2017
    Another possibility for "who Darth Vader is" is this: Vader was indeed just Darth Vader, Obi-Wan's apprentice, but the one who seduced him to the dark side was Luke's father. This would make a truth of the false line fed to Dave Prowse on the set of ESB: "Obi-Wan killed your father." In this case, because Anakin had actually turned to the Dark Side, and Obi-Wan killed him and injured Vader in the infamous "lava duel".

    There's also a strange handwritten note by Lucas in The Making of ESB, presumably from the early drafting of that film: "The Emperor is the evil one; he kills Luke's father. Vader begs Luke to kill him; he does."

    The only way I can make sense of this scenario is if Vader and Anakin had both flirted with the Dark Side, and Palpatine ordered them to duel to see who was the stronger. Anakin won the duel, but refused to strike down his friend, at which the Emperor killed him in a rage. (This basic scenario is Kir Kanos' backstory in the first Crimson Empire comic series.)

    And -- assuming that the "him" in "Vader begs Luke to kill him" refers to Vader -- I can hardly picture Vader begging for death. More likely IMO is Vader taunting Luke about being unable to kill him, too weak to do the deed, like his father. Then Luke kills him in a sudden burst of rage (like how Kyle Katarn kills Maw in Jedi Knight).

    This plot scenario is obviously designed to feed into a Sequel Trilogy that takes place soon after the OT: a series of films in which Luke meets his long-lost sister, gains a measure of self-control, and finally confronts the Emperor. It would hardly make sense to end the Saga as a whole with Luke giving in to his anger, after all.
     
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  25. Tosche_Station

    Tosche_Station Jedi Knight star 2

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    Feb 9, 2015
    Great analysis! I'd always wondered about that note from The Making of ESB .

    The thing about that scenario - where Darth Vader is indeed just Darth Vader - is that it doesn't seem to have a "pay-off" for the "who Darth Vader is" aspect, the way that a "secret identity" does, imho.