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‘The Star Wars’: George Lucas’ Original Vision And How Disney Could Still Bring It To Life

As much as people may like to say that Star Wars is just a simple story of good vs evil, the development of the franchise was anything actually but simple. Star Wars is so iconic that even people who have never seen the films are familiar with the characters. But believe it or not, the versions of Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, Han Solo, and even Obi Wan Kenobi are not what George Lucas originally had in mind when he was conceiving the series.

Now, before its debut in May of 1977, Star Wars went through many significant changes. George Lucas originally began developing the script for Star Wars in 1973. By the following year he had finished a rough draft titled “The Star Wars”. In some ways the basic story beats are still the same. A young man is trained by an old Jedi, and they must protect a Princess and go up against an evil empire. However, Luke Skywalker wasn’t a young farm boy in this version. Instead, he was the older and wiser Jedi that would later become Obi-Wan.

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The original protagonist was actually young man named Annikin Starkiller. Funny enough, Han Solo was an alien who hunted Wookies. Darth Vader had no connection to Luke or Leia, nor did he wear his famous mask.

As you can see, it took a while before Lucas finally came to the version we all know and love. But that hasn’t stopped fans like myself from obsessing over what could have been in the film’s earlier versions. In 2014, I stopped fantasizing because Lucas’ vision finally became a reality – sort of. That was the year fans finally got a glimpse of what it all would’ve looked like when Dark Horse Comics released a miniseries titled “The Star Wars,” which faithfully adapted Lucas’s original rough draft. No longer would fans have to worry about what the film might look like in an alternate universe. It was finally real.

While it still may not be canon, I think there is still a way for Disney to bring it to life.

Now, recently, Marvel has gotten comfortable creating variants with in its franchise. With What if…? we get to see where characters like Iron Man, Thor and Captain America might’ve ended up had they never gotten their powers. It’s been so successful that it’s made me wonder why couldn’t Lucasfilm do the same?

Last year, Star Wars Visions came out. If you haven’t had the chance to check it out yet, it’s anime series where famous Japanese animation companies made shorts set within the Star Wars universe. But there was more freedom to create good stories than fit into the existing canon. I actually think Visions would be a great place to adapt this version – or use these versions of the characters.

I could see an episode just about the original older Luke Skywalker making a lot of fans happy because they never really got to see him as a Master in the sequel trilogy. Can you imagine an episode with an alien Han Solo hunting down Wookies? It could be darkly comedic.

Visually, the comic closely resembled old sci-fi serials like Flash Gordon, which always served as inspiration to Lucas. For that reason, I think a series or an episode that really leans into that goofy B-movie aesthetic could also be a breath of fresh air for the franchise too.

Personally, I’d love for them to go even further and just make a full-length live action film based on that original draft, like their own “Snyder Cut.” But that will never happen.

That’s not to say Lucasfilm isn’t making moves in the right direction. Recent shows like Visions and even Andor have demonstrated a clear willingness to subvert audience expectations and break free from what has been done in the franchise for so long. But I feel like a proper adaptation or acknowledgement of Lucas’ “The Star Wars” would, at the very least, bring real balance to the force.

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