REVEALED: Transcript of Lucas' 1981 Star Wars prequels story conference

Contributed by
May 23, 2013

Want to read George Lucas’ original plan for the Star Wars prequels, circa 1981?

The prequels we got weren’t exactly the ones we were looking for — but Lucas apparently had some different plans in the early days. A transcript of Lucas’ early 1980s story conference with Star Wars alums Richard Marquand, Lawrence Kasdan and Howard Kazanjian has been released as part of an upcoming book promo for J.W. Rinzler's The Making of Star Wars: Return of the Jedi.

In it, Lucas and Kasdan break down the overall story beats of what they wanted from a prequel, and there are some similarities (and differences) to what would eventually make it to the big screen almost two decades later.

It’s interesting to think how the prequels might’ve turned out if Lucas had made them on the heels of the original trilogy all those years ago — using more practical effects and some of the sets and style that would’ve flowed into the other films.

Sadly, we’ll never know, but we at least have Lucas’ thoughts at the time. Check out an excerpt from the book below, and head over to the Huffington Post for a little more (including a pretty great exchange about Yoda):

“Well, anyway, Luke’s father gets subverted by the Emperor. He gets a little weird at home and his wife begins to figure out that things are going wrong and she confides in Ben, who is his mentor. On his missions through the galaxies, Anakin has been going off doing his Jedi thing and a lot of Jedi have been getting killed—and it’s because they turn their back on him and he cuts them down. The president is turning into an Emperor and Luke’s mother suspects that something has happened to her husband. She is pregnant. Anakin gets worse and worse, 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. He goes back to Vader’s wife and explains that Anakin is the bad guy, the one killing all the Jedi.

When he goes back his wife, Mrs. Skywalker has had the kids, the twins, so she has these two little babies who are six months old or so. So everybody has to go into hiding. The Skywalker line is very strong with the Force, so Ben says, ‘I think we should protect the kids, because they may be able to help us right the wrong that your husband has created in the universe.’ And so Ben takes one and gives him to a couple out there on Tatooine and he gets his little hideout in the hills and he watches him grow. Ben can’t raise Luke himself, because he’s a wanted man. Leia and Luke’s mother go to Alderaan and are taken in by the king there, who is a friend of Ben’s. She dies shortly thereafter and Leia is brought up by her foster parents. She knows that her real mother died.”

So what do you think? Would these movies have turned out better if Lucas had made them with his original vision?

(Via Huffington Post)

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