Star Wars Scum and Villainy

Star Wars: George Lucas’ Prequel Plans

Anakin’s betrayal was planned from the very beginning

'Star Wars' creator George Lucas had a grand vision for his all-new sci-fi epic… but it turns out that he'd meticulously planned the prequel trilogy as early as 1981.

A long time ago in a galaxy not so far away, George Lucas had an idea for a sci-fi franchise, the likes of which the world had never seen before. Since its inception, George had planned a multi-part series - eventually settling on the six episodes that we know and (mostly) love. But while he decided to start with 'Episode IV: A New Hope' it seems that George Lucas already had some rather detailed plans for the prequel trilogy…

Celebrating 30 years since the release of 'Return of the Jedi', J.W Rinzler's 'The Making of Star Wars: Return of the Jedi' explores the film's origins… and details one very important meeting between George Lucas, Richard Marquand and Lawrence Kasdan.

The folks over at The Huffington Post have revealed some rather interesting excerpts and I have to admit - it makes for some compelling reading.

Detailing the backstory of Darth Vader, Lucas explained that "Anakin Skywalker starting hanging out with the Emperor, who at this point nobody knew was that bad, because he was an elected official."

"Was he a Jedi?" asked Kasdan.

"No, he was a politician. Richard M. Nixon was his name. He subverted the senate and finally took over and became an imperial guy and he was really evil. But he pretended to be a really nice guy. He sucked Luke's father into the dark side."

And it seems that George Lucas' plans didn't stop there. The meeting carried on to detail Anakin's fate with incredible accuracy… and although one or two minor plot points have differed, the overall story seems to have remained the same.

"Anakin gets worse and worse," Lucas explains. "And finally Ben has to fight him and he throws him down into a volcano and Vader is all beat up. Now, when he falls into the pit, his other arm goes and his leg and there is hardly anything left of him by the time the Emperor's troops fish him out of the drink. Then when Ben finds out that Vader has been fished out and is in the hands of the Empire, he is worried about it."

So it seems that George Lucas already had a fairly good idea of what would happen in the prequel trilogy… but it wasn't entirely perfected. For one thing, he decided very early-on that Jedi Master Yoda would never actually fight.

"Another misconception," Lucas reveals, "is that Yoda teaches Jedi, but he is like a guru; he doesn't go out and fight anybody."

But Lawrence Kasdan was quick to questions this. "You mean he wouldn't be any good in a fight?"

"Not with Darth Vader he wouldn't," replied Lucas.

Of course, after that rather epic lightsaber battle in 'Episode II: Attack of the Clones' we know that Yoda is more than capable when it comes to duelling. And with changes to Padmé Amidala's backstory, it seems the prequels went through some inevitable revisions before they hit the big screens. But I have to admit - having the story pinned down so early on is rather impressive… and has certainly shed new light on the prequel trilogy.

What do you think of the George Lucas' grand plan? Does this make you think about the prequel trilogy any differently?