I was never particularly enthralled with anything we heard about the old live-action series that Lucasfilm was working on back after Revenge of the Sith, but the new details that came to light last week make me even more glad it was shelved before Lucasfilm’s sale to Disney.
Cory Barlog, a God of War creative director who worked at LucasArts for a time in 2009 and got to read the scripts, told VentureBeat (via) about one plot point of the show:
“It was the most mind-blowing thing I’d ever experienced. I cared about the Emperor. They made the Emperor a sympathetic figure who was wronged by this fucking heartless woman. She’s this hardcore gangster, and she just totally destroyed him as a person. I almost cried while reading this. This is the Emperor, the lightning out of the fingers Emperor. That’s something magical. The writers who worked on that, guys from The Shield and 24, these were excellent writers.”
The Emperor turning because of a woman? It’s like an MRA wet dream. If they wanted to make me grateful for the (boring, harmless and no longer canon) Darth Plagueis novel, well, success!
Although we certainly know at this point that anything with George Lucas’ involvement was not going to be seamless with the Expanded Universe, I do have to wonder if those scripts are why James Luceno’s first iteration of the Plagueis novel was canceled in 2007. The book eventually did come to fruition for a 2012 release, several years after we learned the project was “on hold.”
Latino Review came out in the middle of the night to add a new wrinkle to Sith-based rumor packet: That Palpatine will be back, but he won’t be the same, i.e. played by Ian McDiarmid. This isn’t the first time we’ve heard something like this, though previous rumors (including one from Latino Review themselves) mostly pointed towards McDiarmid and a Force Ghost situation.
Cue another round of tedious Dark Empire analogies and angst, but personally I’m just going to give this go the full batshit: Palpatine is Time Lord. He regenerates. Pass it on.
Ian McDiarmid addressed the rumors that Palpatine would return in Episode VII at Fan Expo Canada over the weekend. As reported by ComicBook.com:
“There’s been all sorts of rumors. No conversations have been had, and no deals have been struck. And anyway, I’m dead… but I could be resurrected. Yes, I’ve heard of ghosts, I’ve heard of clones. There’s all sorts of possibilities. But until I get that phone call, like the one I had before, I won’t believe I’m in it.”
The all-but-confirmed to return Carrie Fisher was also at the con, where she hinted about getting in trouble over some of her previous comments… And talking to J.J. Abrams!
This mashup replaces Palpatine’s vocals with those of Hamill’s animated/video game Joker – and swaps Darth Vader’s dialouge for Tom Hardy’s Bane from The Dark Knight Rises. It’s a little weird and a little hilarious. (via)
Latino Review is furthering the rumor from earlier this week about Ian McDiarmid’s return. They say the Emperor won’t be resurrected (sorry, Dark Empire fans) but will be appearing as a Force Ghost. And he had taken a new apprentice – who will presumably be film’s primary antagonist – before he was killed in Return of the Jedi.
What else do they say? ” Not one thing they have in the script is from a book,” (or a comic?) so count out the usual suspects… If you believe this, anyway.
There are a couple other rumors floating around today as well. One, from Episode 7 News echoes something we heard in May, that Abrams may have his hands in far more than just the actual movie. This one calls him “the creative core” of everything surrounding the new films. The other, from The Daily Superhero, says that the secrecy mandates “pretty much sounds to me like armed guards are near certain important people who are working on this movie, 24/7.”
The armed guard thing sounds like something we’ll be looking back and laughing at in 2015, but hey. Sure. Why not.
Jedi News is reporting that Ian McDiarmid will be returning in Episode VII. Emperor Palpatine reborn? Undead? A relative? A Holocron? Or simply in a dream or vision? Naturally this is completely unconfirmed, but there are any number of possibilities…
But if I was betting? Holocron, ghost or vision. By a mile.
SciFiNow talked to Ian McDiarmid on his Star Wars character. He talks about Palpatine’s spinoff potential and even calls the Darth Palgueis novel ‘fascinating.’
But the highlight is perhaps his own thoughts on the character, and the possibilities going forward:
“I thought Sith were just somehow born evil, that’s what they were. But I’ve… with reference to a few things that George has said, I realised that that’s not true. He might well have a tragic arc too, but I don’t know. And even if he does I’m not sure we’ll ever see it. But obviously, if we did and if it happened it would be something that would be completely fascinating to do and it would be like building a Shakespearean character.
“Also the great thing about these movies is that George doesn’t give much away in advance to anybody,” McDiarmid continues, “which is good because that’s what a good storyteller should do, you should really want to know what’s going to happen next or how it all started.”
“And that’s all there in George’s head, and he’s released it, I suppose, in one way or another over the last few years. And although, of course, Disney now owns the franchise, George is there very much as a creative consultant and I’m sure they’ll be very grateful for that. And those storylines will still continue to emerge from that sort of databank, that extraordinary databank which is his brain.
For all the squee over Plagueis, I never really felt that it revealed much about Palpatine’s own motivation: The character himself is still very much a mystery, and I can how exploring that could be more fruitful with all the EU’s restraints removed. But somehow, I doubt that spinoff is very high on the list…
Chancellor Palpatine returns to The Clone Wars in the final episode of the season with Tim Curry taking the role over after the passing of Ian Abercrombie. Bryan at Big Shiny Robot has the scoop on how Dave Filoni selected Tim Curry and has an exclusive preview clip that has Palpatine presiding over the trial of Ahsoka Tano, with Admiral Tarkin as prosecutor, and Padme as defense counsel. Apparently, there aren’t any trial lawyers in The Clone Wars.
Tim Curry is probably known best for his role of Dr. Frank-N-Furter from The Rocky Horror Picture Show, but has been doing a lot of voice work in the past twenty years, including on The Wild Thornberrys and Young Justice.
The info was first revealed at the Lucasfilm screening of the season five finale last Friday, but was one of those secrets asked to be kept. We’ll have more tidbits from the screening Q&A after ‘The Wrong Jedi’ airs on Saturday, wrapping up the finale story arc.
May is still showering, but in the land of Hallmark, spring means only one thing: The 2010 Dreambook is out. There are several Star Wars selections: One set of Yoda and Captain Rex (page 56) and several Empire Strikes Back-themed ornaments (pages 60-61) that you can check out below the cut. Luke in flight gear, a snowspeeder, and Vader chatting with holo Palpy are full size, while the mini set is Boba Fett and Han in Carbonite. Continue reading →