In my recent articles I attempted to cover just how much the prequels made Star Wars a better saga; how the backstory George Lucas gave us deepened our understanding of the Star Wars galaxy, how his expansion on certain elements helped us to see more into certain key elements within the original trilogy and how the knock on effects of Anakin Skywalker’s turn to the dark side were resolved with Luke’s journey in Return of the Jedi. You guys all threw in your thoughts and opinions and it made for quite a great discussion on all things Star Wars as it currently stands.
In this next article, I want to look at how that might inform the all new sequel trilogy (and potentially beyond). What might be on the cards for Episode 7 and just how difficult Disney’s re-launch of the Star Wars Saga might be. I am going to ignore the expanded universe because I don’t want to see the new films tied to that history, the same way that Lucas was never tied to them for the prequels. I want to see if natural cycles and story themes within the existing six films can enable us to deduce what comes next.
The more I think about this, the more problems grow out of the idea of a direct sequel to the Star Wars saga but I think we have enough in the first six episodes to form some sort of structure of where this might go. Remember none of this is based on facts, because frankly beyond J.J. Abram directing and Kathleen Kennedy producing we have no real facts. All we know is George Lucas provided a treatment for the sequels and it will be Episode 7, implying we are carrying on from Episode 6, from back in 1983…
10. 30 Years
1983. Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi ends. Luke Skywalker with the help of his dear old dad and his rebel friends have defeated the Empire. The Jedi have gained the ability to project themselves as blue ghosts to aid young Luke. Over in Coruscant, the people revolt against the dictatorship that has ruled them for the past couple of decades. All is right with the galaxy and it seems everybody wants to party because of it.
Now if this was 1987, you could probably predict that Star Wars Episode 7 would have Mark Hamill a few years older pushing his Jedi skills on as the rebellion form a new republic and go about cleaning up the mess the Empire left. Civil wars, getting the people back on side, all that stuff. But it’s not 1987, it’s 2013 (and it will be 2015 when the film actually hits) and because of that it presents the first problem for Disney – when to set this new episode.
I see the options as either:
- Straight after Episode 6 with a complete recast of the core characters (or maybe some Jeff Bridges Tron style CGI trickery).
- 30 Years after Episode 6 with the same actors.
Or hidden option No.3
- Straight after Episode 6 with a whole new group of characters somewhere else in the galaxy who sooner or later will catch up with our old characters after 30 years has passed over three films.
Now if rumours are to be believed Disney are actively pursuing Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford and all three are keen to get involved. This makes me think we’re hitting Episode 7 with option 2: 30 years after Episode 6 with the same actors. This is the choice that makes my little fanboy heart flutter the most even if it the one choice that proves the most problematic storywise for the project. I mean after all, a lot could have changed in 30 years. Which in turn means we are going to miss a lot of good stuff in the 30 years of Star Wars galaxy action we won’t get to see. It will be great to see Luke, Han and Leia again but questions over what happened with them for three decades that led them to wherever they are now will no doubt be raised. Which brings us to section 2, what will be the setting for Episode 7?
This article was first posted on March 5, 2013