The Deep Dark Secrets of Return of the Jedi

revenge-of-the-jedi

We mean “Return”…

Wired has a fun 30-point rundown of stuffs you didn’t know about the third installment of the original trilogy which preceded the first three films in the still-ongoing and now Disney-controlled saga. (The best film in the entire Star Wars series is, of course, the one I made in my mind: Kevin Skywalker: Bitter Spiteful Brother.)

Anyway, here are some of my favorite bits of hidden film history:

3. Speaking of connections to classic movies, Emperor Palpatine, making his first appearance in the flesh — he was just bits and bytes in that hologram in Empire, and was portrayed by a different actor — was at first named after a character in Taxi Driver, but his name was changed to avoid potential legal issues. …

14. Yoda was to sit this one out, but he was added after consultation with child psychologists made George Lucas decide he needed an independent character to confirm Darth Vader’s claim that he is Luke Skywalker’s father. Now you know why Yoda doesn’t do much for the rest of the movie. …

24. “It’s a trap,” which is arguably the most famous line in the movie, was, incredibly, not in the screenplay. The line was scripted as “Its a trick!” and was later changed post-filming after a test screening because, let’s face it, “it’s a trick” just doesn’t have the same ring to it. …

27. Harrison Ford wanted Han Solo to die in the movie, sacrificing himself to save his friends. George Lucas vetoed that idea even though co-writer Lawrence Kasdan supported it. Kasdan suggested that Solo not survive being thawed, in part to make the audience believe no one was safe in the final film.

Added bonus (as opposed to a subtracted bonus): excerpts from a rough draft of the original Lucas script, which includes a resurrected (or, more aptly, revitalized) Obi-Wan Kenobi:

68. INT. HOLD – SHUTTLE

Luke sits in a small metallic cell inside the hold of the shuttle. His head is in his hands.

LUKE
Ben, help me…come to me, please Ben. I’m not strong enough to face my father. Help me to resist the Dark Side of the Force. Ben, Ben, please…

Luke looks up to see a shimmering, translucent image of Yoda standing in the tiny cell with him. Leia is startled by the vision.

LUKE
Yoda?

YODA
Ben can no longer help you. His power to stay in the netherworld has been spent. He will soon be one with the Force. His identity lost forever.

LUKE
No, help him. Bring him back…

YODA
Only you can draw him back to the material world. Stop your anger.

LUKE
How, I can’t…

YODA
You can’t, because that is what you think. Have you learned nothing?

LUKE
Master, I…

YODA
You cannot help Obi-Wan! You cannot face your father! You cannot resist the Dark Side! The Emperor has already won.

LUKE
I’m sorry, I…

YODA
Sorry will not save you…or Obi-Wan…or your father destroy.

LUKE
I have no will to destroy my father…there must be some good in him, I can feel it.

YODA
Destroy you he will, as he destroyed himself…this you must face…

LUKE
I am not strong enough, I will fail.

YODA
If that is the way you feel…then I must turn to another for help.

LUKE
Another? Who?

YODA
The Force runs strong in the Skywalker line. If you will not destroy your father, there is only one other left who can…your sister.

88. HAD ABBADON – THE TOMB’S PRISON

Luke lies unconscious on a small island in the middle of a hot lava lake. A hot wind blows across his face and wakes him. He looks around at his hostile surroundings and suddenly becomes aware of another person sitting behind him. He turns on the intruder with Jedi speed. The shrouded figure doesn’t move or even look up.

LUKE
Ben…

Slowly, the hooded figure looks up, revealing his face. It is Ben Kenobi in the flesh.

BEN
I could no longer stay in the netherworld.

LUKE
But Yoda said…

BEN
…that I would become one with the Force and choose not to return to the material world? That your anger prevented me from…

LUKE
But I’m not angry…not anymore…I understand why you didn’t tell me about my father. I do.

BEN
I know. And I am here to help you destroy the Emperor, and…your father.

LUKE
I can’t.

Suddenly Yoda appears beside Ben.

YODA
You can and you will…I in the netherworld, and Obi-Wan at your side. Help you we will.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Read This Here. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s