Time again for Star Wars Weekly, the SYFY WIRE series that rounds up the most important news of the week from a galaxy far, far away. Think of us as your own personal Star Wars Holocron.
GALAXY OF ADVENTURES
Lucasfilm announced this week a brand new animated series of shorts aimed at kids called Star Wars: Galaxy of Adventures for its all-new Star Wars Kids YouTube channel. The series will offer stories based on the classic films in a new style — all in a bite-sized format.
Watch the trailer here:
Episodes begin today. According to Lucasfilm, this is to help parents introduce Star Wars to their kids in a format they know and love. I'm more excited to watch them myself.
More than anything, I’m fascinated to see how Jar Jar Binks is handled on this series. I think he’ll work for a much wider audience as a cartoon character and more people will understand why he’s so great. Subscribe to the Star Wars Kids YouTube channel for updates.
GLORIA KATZ PASSES AWAY
Gloria Katz passed away this week from ovarian cancer.
It’s widely known that she co-wrote American Graffiti with George Lucas and her husband Willard Huyck, and she wrote Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom with her husband as well, but what is less well-known is that the pair did a secret polish on the screenplay for Star Wars: A New Hope.
She’s estimated to have rewritten 30 percent of the dialogue for the film and took credit for Princess Leia’s take-charge nature.
She left an indelible mark on the world of Star Wars and the world is poorer for her loss.
LUKE IN THE FORCE AWAKENS
Christian Alzmann, an artist contracted in 2013 to make art for what would become Star Wars: The Force Awakens, posted his first piece of art from that era to Instagram this week.
If you dig deeper into the story and into the timeline, you'll realize that Luke Skywalker’s exile and being cut off from the Force was part of George Lucas’ blueprint. In 2013, Lucas was still around approving art like this. Reading Phil Szostak’s Art of books certainly brings to light information about how much these new films follow Lucas’ intentions, but it seems to get lost in debates about the movie.
There’s another bit of fascinating Force Awakens-era Luke Skywalker lore that hit the Internet this week, too.
We almost got Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back Luke in the film.
According to leaked sources (which, who knows, maybe it could still be bunk), actor Robert Boulter was cast in the part and even filmed scenes for Rey’s Force vision to recreate a moment from the iconic lightsaber duel in The Empire Strikes Back.
I hope one day we can get a definitive making-of book for The Force Awakens so we can learn more tidbits like this.
MARVEL DIRECTORS ON THE SET OF THE MANDALORIAN
Jon Favreau posted a tantalizing image from the set of The Mandalorian.
That's Peyton Reed, Taika Waititi, and the Russo Brothers with him, all visiting his Star Wars set. Waititi is involved with the production of The Mandalorian and even directing an episode. Will we see more Marvel talent crossover? Anything is possible.
MILLENNIUM FALCON OWNER’S MANUAL
The Millennium Falcon got a new owner’s manual this week, disguised as a legitimate Haynes Manual. A previous version had been out, but now it’s updated to reflect more recent modifications of the famous ship we’ve seen in the movies. One thing we learned? It’s a highly customizable ship with many, many different sorts of configurations.
These books are the right blend of in-universe fiction and Star Wars nerdery. It’s in stores now. It’s a perfect gift for the car nerd in your family as well as the Star Wars nerd.
ANAKIN HAS BEEN BUILDING C-3PO SINCE 1977!
Screenrant unearthed some very interesting transcripts this week that revealed C-3POs that we saw in The Phantom Menace had been percolating since 1977.
George Lucas, speaking with Carol Titelman, Lucasfilm’s then-director of publicity, spoke about Threepio’s background and dropped a tidbit in the middle of the recording. Speaking as Threepio, Lucas says: “I was lucky to be totally reassembled by a young boy working for a junk dealer. After several years I gained new coverings and became as good as new.”
It’s fascinating how many ideas that had been a part of Star Wars all along and we just didn’t know it until the prequels came out. There’s always something new to learn!
Until next week, May the Force Be With You!