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Felicity Warner / HCM
Culture > Entertainment

Everything the Star Wars Sequels Could Have Been Part I.

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UW Lax chapter.

The Star Wars Sequels are not good. I don’t really think that’s a controversial statement, they’re not just bad according to hard-core fans, they’re bad because the writing is so bad even the casual movie-goer is having problems following a plot.

           However, I am not going to go through why, in my opinion, were not good because: 1) Everything that I could say about them has already been said, 2) I don’t have the energy anymore to be negative about them, and 3) I want to respect everyone involved in the making of the sequels (the cast, the crew, the writers/directors, etc) because taking on a sequel series to Star Wars was not an easy task in itself, let alone having to work within the confines of what limitations were put on them. It’s also difficult to maintain a constant three-movie story arc when writers are fired after the first movie is released, all their work rewritten for the second movie, and, when the second movie tanks, are re-hired to try to clean up that mess. How could anyone succeed under those conditions?

            So, in honor of the Star Wars trilogy system when it comes to releasing movies, I’ll be releasing three blog posts. The last two posts are going to be variations of what I would do if I were writing sequel movies, but this first one here is all about what George Lucas wanted to do (or what we know George wanted to do).

            George, from the beginning, planned for nine episodes. During the first trilogy, he would ask Mark Hamill if he would like to reprise his role of Luke Skywalker for a sequel series… which would come out circa 2011. He was planning that far ahead.

            There’s also evidence that he had planned for 10-12 movies. This included three whole trilogies and a solo prequel, which would function as an introduction to the entire Star Wars universe, and a final solo sequel, which would wrap everything up.

            So even though sometimes he denied it, he always had a plan and those plans included Luke Skywalker as a possible leading character or recurring character in the sequel trilogy.

            Basically, George’s idea was for a scavenger chick named Kira to find Luke’s first lightsaber/his father’s on a a marshy, waterlogged planet. So she goes to find Luke and he’s in exile in the first Jedi Temple. There’s also this guy, Sam, and it’s been debated that they are Leia and Han’s children because they look so much like them. Yeah, that’s totally Rey (and later Finn) and the basic plot of The Force Awakens. We didn’t get any solid plans for Han or Leia or Luke (who was just written to be in exile) or any other familiar characters fans would know from the Extended Universe (but more on that in Part III). In fact, it seems like George was focusing on all new characters. Or trying to, anyway. 

            The bad guy was supposed to be this Darth Talon chick, who looks pretty cool, but I guess he wanted to talk more about midichlorians… a lot more (ugh) and “the whills” (double ugh). He was also going to kill off Luke and have Kira and Leia (now a Jedi herself) beat both Darth Talon and Luke’s Jedi apprentice that killed him in the finale (episode 9).

            This is where I’m torn.

(*Kylo Ren voice* I’m being torn apart)

            I don’t really know if having a trilogy where the Skywalkers weren’t main characters would have pleased the fans any more than the Prequels did. At least the prequels had a link to the Originals. If the sequel characters were written well it might have turned out okay, but I just think it’d be really difficult to get people to come around to completely new characters.

            The Mandalorian is very successful and it doesn’t have any Skywalkers in it, but it’s also not trying to fill the shoes of a Star Wars trilogy. It’s its own thing and it’s doing really well at it. However, there’s just different expectations for the movies. It’s a family thing.

            That’s especially exemplified when Rey’s parentage is directly put into question in The Force Awakens. Damn, I remember people thinking she was everything from a Solo to a Skywalker to a Kenobi to a Jinn. I also remember people thinking Jyn Erso and Cassian Andor from Rogue One were going to be revealed to be her parents… that was until we saw them blow up. I’m sorry, but it’s a family series at this point and I don’t think having Ben Solo/Kylo Ren was enough to fill that. Ever since the Empire Strikes Back, there’s been this reveal of parentage/relation, who cares if it’s “fan service”. I hate that term, by the way. The initial movies wouldn’t have been successful if it weren’t for fans so you should be making movies for the fans. That’s not fan service, that’s delivering a product for the people whose opinions you should care about when making a sequel/prequel/whatever.

            Rant aside, I think that it’s super hard not to think George’s ideas are super important, important enough to obliterate any ideas I or anybody else would have had on the Star Wars sequels. He is the creator, after all. I’m a writer, I get it. I would want to do what I had envisioned too.

            But I’m also a fan. And not just of Star Wars, but of a lot of things. Any fan knows that there are some things authors/writers/directors do sometimes that just don’t make a whole lot of sense (midichlorians ugh). Being both a fan and a writer, I’ve realized that you can be the creator and you can hold weight being the creator, but once you put something out there, it doesn’t just belong to you anymore. That doesn’t mean that you should ever put out a product that you don’t like or that you’re not proud of just to appease fans, but that doesn’t mean you can’t bend (get rid of the freaking midichlorians).

           That being said, I, like the initial writers, would still have tried to adapt his sequel ideas into movies. However, while these plans were initially followed, they were soon forgotten and that’s where it all went wrong. I’m looking at you, The Last Jedi.

            The Force Awakens, though, was actually good. Yeah, it was based a little too heavily on A New Hope, but I had fun watching it and it got everyone excited for the next installment. Most importantly, the characters were fun. Its predictability totally didn’t warrant getting its writers fired over, but here we are.

            George’s original ideas for a sequel trilogy which starred Kira were solid, but coming up with a direction to take them seems difficult. What kind of three movie plot-arc could come from that? (Say what you will about George’s dialogue from Attack of the Clones, but he’s good at big-picture, three movie arcs. Like how Palpatine becoming the Emperor literally started off with him tricking Padme Amidala into voting for him as chancellor? Magnificent.)

            There’s a few things George didn’t like about the Extended Universe (and this first post is all about trying to figure out the Sequels in a way George would be okay with), but there’s plenty of little things they could have borrowed without dashing George’s ideas. I mean, they did that. Kylo Ren/Ben Solo is based on Darth Caedus/Jacen Solo from the Extended Universe.

            There’s really no avoiding the Extended Universe either. Lots of writers worked really hard over the years on those stories too and lots of fans, the ones that grew up in between the Originals and the Prequels, got really invested in the hundreds of novels (155~) that were made. Waving goodbye to them without a care was kind of a slap in the face. Can you imagine the outrage if one day Disney was like, “Yeah, the Clone Wars? Not about it.”

             Like, okay, the Clone Wars is on another level but my point still stands. 

             To kind of wrap this up, I know it’s a lot- oops-, I basically think there’s no pleasing Star Wars fans indefinitely, but there were ways to make the Sequels work. In the next two posts, I’m just going to give my opinion on how I would have written the Star Wars Sequels. The first one is going to be talking about if we had followed kind of what George wanted to do mixed with the Sequels we actually got and the second one is going to be just straight up what I would have done if I had full control of everything that happened in the sequels. This is all just for fun and I’m going to really try not to be negative about the Sequels we got, but it’ll probably come out in some instances.

             I’m also not trying to say I’m an expert on Star Wars, because I’m totally not, I’m just writing these “What If” stories for myself because I was so disappointed with the product we got. This is totally just for my own closure. No hate goes out to the directors/writers/cast/crew. 


Here’s the YouTube videos where I got most of my information from (I knew some of it, but this was very insightful and eye-opening). They include so much stuff that I didn’t cover, so I would definitely check them out if you want some more in-depth information. Plus some really cool fun facts like in very early drafts of Star Wars, Leia was not going to be Luke’s sister… it was going to be somebody totally not in the movies at all and a sequel series was going to be all about Luke searching the galaxy for her? Totally rad.

STAR WARS: The Original Plans for the Sequel Trilogy by Owen Likes Comics


STAR WARS: George Lucas’ Original Sequel Trilogy Plans Explained | Breakdown Of Episode 7, 8 & 9 by Heavy Spoilers


Star Wars Would Have Been Totally Different If George Lucas Had His Way by CBR


There’s also so many other videos out there like this, along with other videos that talk about what other people would have done if they had written the sequel series. If I watch any of them, I will link them below in my following articles and credit them in the text. 

Also the header image is bananas. I have a limited image bank, so we get bananas. I tried to find some sand because… anakin… but oh well. Let’s settle with bananas because I went bananas trying to follow the plot of The Rise of Skywalker.