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Remake the Prequels — Page 2

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Isn't political dialogue one of the main gripes with the prequels? Politics should indeed be mentioned, but I would stress that the Republic is a bureaucracy, not something that needs to be particularly understood.

Remember that War is in the title. It should be about that above all else. Probably the Clone War. So what sides are there in this war? Are clones enemies or allies? Alternately, is it about a clone of an important person that the war is started?

On another note, something that should probably be addressed is the fact that practically everyone on Earth knows that the Republic becomes an Empire. This makes having heroes on the side of the Republic tragic by default, at least if we show the fall of the Republic, which is almost required so that the transition to the OT is not incredibly jarring and disorienting: "Evil Empire? What? I thought that we were winning the war?! Did the other side win?" Etc.

You probably don’t recognize me because of the red arm.
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"Femeret" sounds like the name of a furry mink-like creature, not the name of a Force religion (IMO).

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As for clones, I've floated the idea that there not be clones. That the war start between a few planets, fueled by rumors of a cloned army. Maybe there is cloning technology being used on a small scale or merely threatened to be used and it's deemed unethical/dangerous...but many planets see it as a way to become militarily powerful. Cloning becomes the battle cry in what was already an tense situation, thus the Clone Wars.

The blue elephant in the room.

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I started playing around with a Mulan-esque concept for the use of clones in the clone wars.  Republic becomes involved in a war threatening to destroy their way of life.  Palpatine, a high-ranking politician, demands each family residing in the Republic to offer up one healthy member of their family to fight in the war.  To stop their children from being sent off to war, many wealthy families have had clones of their children made to fight in their place, hence the Clone Wars.  Another idea I've played around with is that it has nothing to do with clones of people, but rather the wars themselves were clones.  One war comes to a close, but the Republic failed to learn from their mistakes, and due to the same set of circumstances as the first, another war breaks out.  Similar to how we refer to World War I & II together, even though they were separate affairs.  Calling them the "Clone Wars" is really more of a metaphor rather than a literal representation of who fought.

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Curious about this 'clone wars' concept. What would they be fighting about? What would make the wars stand out as clone wars, rather than trade wars or freedom wars? If there was no apparent connection or overall reason...just a mass uprising of wars, it could make sense....but how does it make sense to the viewer?

The blue elephant in the room.

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What's going on with the wars is critical as far as how it directly or indirectly it ties into the Empire's rise. At the moment I've been internally considering making Mandalorian invading force something so genuinely frightening and creepy that it would make as to why so many embraced someone like Palpatine and initially welcomed the initial militarization of the Republic. 

The enemy threat bringing about the war to me has to be largely external to differentiate it from the original trilogy, but also a touch internal to demonstrate how rotten much of the inside of the Republic has become over time. Hence the external threat of the Mandalorian invaders, and the internal threat of criminal Traezin Crayde selling out the galaxy in exchange for absolute power. Crayde, a man who might not have become so big a few centuries before when Repulic laws were better enforced, now powerful enough to be a partner with an invading horde.

Aesthetically I've been thinking about moving this Mandalorian Coalition into an image of cold, unnatural biology vs. the warm, plain humanity (for lack of a better term) of the Republic/Rebels vs. the Empire's cold technology. The clones themselves, falling into the uncanny valley, looking just too symmetric and always seeming off in contrast to all the various little flaws and quirks of real people. The Mandalorians, (as I've been considering) walking Frankenstein monsters of a sort, literally stitched together with their own parts and those of other races in the name of having better biology. Beings visually representing what they plan to do to the Republic once its conquered, taken apart and then put back together for its own good. 

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I had forgotten your use of the name "Traezin." It must have been in my mind as I was thinking of my Darth's name and settled on something similar. It is an apt name for such a character.

It is important to have the story not feel like a repeat of the OT.

The blue elephant in the room.

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Mrebo said:

It is important to have the story not feel like a repeat of the OT.

Yes, it is.  However, it also needs to feel similar to the OT and not be so different that it doesn't feel like the same universe, a lot of which could be done with the use of parallels and foreshadowing that enhance the OT.  Anakin would have to lose his hand at one point.  Mentors need to die.  Sketchy social settings (cantina, jabba's palace, etc.) that usually play a big role in Star Wars.  It needs to feel old and new.  To me, the 2009 Star Trek movie is the perfect example of that old and new feeling that has to happen when you revisit a franchise, although I do cringe mentioning Star Trek positively on a Star Wars forum.

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I assume that the Republic has been rotting for a long time, so it would make sense that the systems would be fighting for their political autonomy. The Republic could shut down communications across the galaxy in preparation for the transition into Galactic Empire, so each system would be very isolated. For these systems to then rise up against the Empire, even isolated and with no hope of success, may justify the term "clone wars".

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Given that this has kind of become a story discussion thread =P  I figured I would post this concept here.  Now I'm not 100% that this would work, and I'm kind of anticipating some negativity around it, but just hear me out.  What if "Skywalker" isn't Anakin's actual name?  What if, when you are sworn into the Jedi Order, you are given a "Jedi name" by your master, similar to what you see in native american culture where you earn a name based on feats you performed in war.  Anakin's actual name is "Anakin Lars."  Ben gives Anakin the name "Skywalker" when he joins the Jedi due to him being an excellent pilot.  Obi-Wan's actual name would be "Ben Kenobi."  Obi-Wan can mean something in Yoda's native language.  (Yoda's native language not being english would explain why he talks sort of strangely.  Like an accent.)  Being such close friends, though, they keep elements of their actual names when speaking to each other, saying "Anakin Skywalker" or "Obi-Wan Kenobi."  When Obi-Wan delivers Luke to the Lars farm, he gives him Skywalker as a surname to honor the good man his father once was.

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No need to add disclaimers to ideas here, Darth. It's actually similar to an idea I had at one time to have Skywalker be a name given to Anakin when he performed a "miracle" of piloting for a primitive species. Your idea is better though.

I got the feeling from watching Return of the Jedi that it was the Anakin part of Anakin Skywalker's name that evoked Vader's ire. "I know that you were once Anakin Skywalker, my father." Luke added emphasis to Anakin, not to Skywalker. So I think that it may be better to have Lars as the name that Owen and Beru took when they went into hiding, Owen's real name being Skywalker. Of course, the name Lars is never mentioned in the OT proper, so it can be assumed that their names are Skywalker, but it makes sense that they don't use those names in public. It wouldn't make sense for Luke to keep the name Skywalker if it was given to him by Obi-wan, for Owen would never tell him that it was his name, disliking Anakin as he did.

Nobody seems to recognize the name Skywalker in the OT. Even Leia, who knows the history of Obi-wan Kenobi, doesn't seem to understand the significance of Luke's name. Lando is totally ignorant of it as well, and he may have been around 20 years old at the time of Anakin's fall (though I think that the time of his fall should be pushed back at least ten to fifteen years in this rewrite). This seems to suggest that Skywalker was not a well-known name in the galaxy, or at least people didn't attach significance to it. I'm guessing that Anakin Skywalker is the name that his parents gave him, because I doubt that Anakin would be a name chosen by him as a Jedi title. Remember also that according to ANH, Anakin was not a Jedi when he left Obi-wan, so Obi-wan could not have given him any Jedi name.

I like the idea that Yoda gave Ben his Jedi name of Obi-wan. This makes sense in the context of the story. However, if we're examining all of the evidence, it suggests that Anakin Skywalker, the name given by his parents, was changed by Anakin himself to Darth Vader, going beyond the single first name change and creating a new identity, twisting the ways of the Jedi. Darth is not a title, it is his literal first name. "You can't win Darth."

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NeverarGreat said:

Nobody seems to recognize the name Skywalker in the OT. Even Leia, who knows the history of Obi-wan Kenobi, doesn't seem to understand the significance of Luke's name. Lando is totally ignorant of it as well, and he may have been around 20 years old at the time of Anakin's fall (though I think that the time of his fall should be pushed back at least ten to fifteen years in this rewrite). This seems to suggest that Skywalker was not a well-known name in the galaxy, or at least people didn't attach significance to it. I'm guessing that Anakin Skywalker is the name that his parents gave him, because I doubt that Anakin would be a name chosen by him as a Jedi title. Remember also that according to ANH, Anakin was not a Jedi when he left Obi-wan, so Obi-wan could not have given him any Jedi name.

Given that the Jedi themselves have slipped into myth, I think it would be safe to assume that the names of the Jedi themselves would also have fallen out of general knowledge.  Not to mention Vader himself would have wanted the name Anakin Skywalker to be eliminated from all knowledge.  And I'm not sure what you meant by Anakin not having been a Jedi when he left Obi-Wan.  Even though Darth Vader says "When I left you I was but the learner."  I don't think this negates the idea of him having a Jedi name.  Even if he wasn't considered a full Jedi at the time, he would still have been a member of the order.  Also, in ANH Obi-Wan, when telling Luke how his father died says, "A young Jedi named Darth Vader."  So, when Vader says "I was but the learner." I think he was just referring to him being less skilled than Obi-Wan at the time, but that now he was stronger.

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I'm liking the active idea thread and we should strive for constructive criticism only!

I too am having mixed feelings on the naming issue. We don't want to inject needless complications. That's something I'm grappling with in hiding Anakin's transformation into Vader....

Good things I see in the suggestion are giving Anakin roots and a tangible connection to Owen. Neverar makes a good point questioning if Owen would keep the Skywalker name for Luke. Though maybe he wouldn't change it back because  Luke Lars sounds silly :P Still, I don't think Owen disliked Anakin at all. He hated that he went away and became something terrible and/or died.

But if not brothers, what should the relationship be between Owen and Anakin? Do we care about Anakin's parentage? (not at all rhetorical, I'm wondering about how you all feel about it)

I agree that people don't attach significance to the name Skywalker. I don't envision Anakin as a savior of worlds.

I don't worry about Vader going to Tatooine to look up his old friend/brother Owen, or poking around there to see if that is where his son ended up. None of that has to be an issue.

Neverar, I'm not positive what you mean about when Anakin left Obi Wan? At least Obi Wan said "I was once a Jedi Knight the same as your father."

The blue elephant in the room.

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As for Anakin's parentage, I always imagined that Anakin and Owens' parents had died in some accident and they were left to fend for themselves.  They bought a moisture farm and Anakin bought a ship and got into the spice trade.  "He was a navigator on a spice freighter." being not a total lie, just not the whole truth.  I always figured Vader just wouldn't go back to Tatooine because it's a place of pain for him, a reminder of who he was before he became Vader, which is what he wants to forget.

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What of the notion that Beru is Anakin's sister? One potential issue I see is why Beru wouldn't have told Luke more about him, rather than leaving it to Owen to say he was a navigator, etc.

Should Anakin have his own ship? Or is it a ship he serves on?

The blue elephant in the room.

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Perhaps Anakin left Obi-wan after a period of training to become a full Jedi, like Luke did with Yoda. Everyone imagines the adventures of Anakin and Obi-wan, but it could be that Obi-wan fought in the first Clone War (whatever that is) and helped Bail Organa in that war, and then retired to train Jedi, like Yoda. He trained Anakin during the next outbreak of war, which threatened the Republic, and Anakin rushed off to become a Jedi while he stayed behind and assumed a mentor role, going to find Anakin only when it was clear that he was turning to the dark side, in an attempt to dissuade him from fighting. This is referenced in ROTJ:

"Come away with me."

"Obi-wan once thought as you do. You don't know the power of the Dark Side. I must obey my master."

The chancellor of course would have taken over Anakin's training at this point, and is sending him on dehumanizing missions and pushing him further than his physical body can take.

To the navigator idea, it would be good to reference this as Anakin's beginning. Obi-wan could have discovered Anakin when he was navigating a spice freighter, and it was there that he realized that Anakin was a great pilot.

Beru isn't really a presence in the OT, and I assume that the reason she isn't talked about was that Owen was the only one who knew Anakin before he left.

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Basically, here's how I see the beginning of Episode I:  Obi-Wan, on some sort of mission vital to the cause of the first Clone War, crash lands on Tatooine.  Ship ruined, he goes to the nearby town of Mos Eisley and enters the Cantina to look for a pilot who will transport him.  He meets Willhuff Tarkin who introduces him to Anakin Lars, who, needing money, agrees to transport him.  He takes Obi-Wan back to the moisture farm, where Owen talks Anakin out of it.  "Why on earth would you transport a crazy Jedi on some damn fool-idealistic crusade?"  However, he agrees to let Obi-Wan take shelter there for the night, but tomorrow he must go back into town and make other arrangements.   Staring out at the binary sunset, Obi-Wan tells Anakin of the Jedi, how his real name is Ben Kenobi, and that Obi-Wan was the name given to him by his master, a wise, centuries-old Jedi Master called Yoda (only mentioned, never seen).  Inspired by tales of adventure beyond the dusty plains of Tatooine, he sneaks off in the middle of the night with the Jedi, leaving nothing but a note for Owen promising to return, meets up with Tarkin (his first mate) and gets in his awesome ship to be named at a later date, heading off to go on adventures and awesomeness, ultimately joining the Jedi Order, getting the name Skywalker, betraying the Jedi, and becoming Darth Vader.

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That's a good beginning Darth, and if we had never seen Tatooine or the homestead or the binary sunset before, I would have no problem with it at all. Problem is, we see Tatooine twice in the OT, and three times in the Lucas Prequels. That's an awful lot of time to be spent on a planet where even Luke says there's nothing to see.

I think that if we are going to focus on Anakin as the protagonist of these movies, it should be after he becomes a Jedi, and even after he has been trained by Obi-wan. The reason is that the OT can be viewed as an exploration of Anakin's past. We begin on the planet of Anakin's birth, meet his brother, then meet the man who trained him, then travel to Alderaan like Obi-wan (and perhaps Anakin) did in the Clone Wars, and have Luke be trained as a Jedi, except that this time he is trained by Yoda, not Obi-wan, and this makes the difference in him not turning to the Dark Side. To repeat these beats in the prequels seems unnecessary. Of course, the only story left to tell at that point is how Anakin the Jedi became Darth Vader, and we don't really want to spoil the surprise, so we've brainstormed ourselves into a corner.

Alternately, as has been suggested, it could be about Obi-wan, and how he was a hotheaded Jedi who eventually cooled down and became the serene mentor we know in the OT. The trilogy could begin with the outbreak of the First Clone War, and could even end at the end of the First Clone War, when he is rescued by Anakin who is piloting a spice freighter and happens to be in the area. He is tired of war by this point, and Yoda has told him to pass on what he has learned, so he promises to train Anakin to take his place in the Jedi Order, and he is able to retire from war in peace.

OR DOES HE???? ;)

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You see, I personally don't have an issue with Luke and Anakin's journeys beginning the same way.  I'm torn on the whole protagonist issue.  On the one hand, Obi-Wan as the protagonist would better lead into the OT without ruining the mystery of Vader, however Anakin as a protagonist just seems more interesting to me.  I've pretty much decided I'm going to do a re-write, and I'm thinking right now that they would both kind of share the role of protagonist, but then that was a big problem of the Lucas prequels.  There wasn't a clear protagonist.  So I'm torn.   The idea of it ending with the meeting of Obi-Wan and Anakin intrigues me.  It could be a good story without ruining any of the key moments of the OT.  But, at the same time I can't help but feel like we'd be missing a huge part of the overall story.  I mean, when it all comes down to it, you should be able to go from one chapter of the story to the next without feeling like you've missed anything of major importance.  To have Obi-Wan be this triumphant hero and then all of a sudden he's some old hermit on Tatooine and the Jedi are extinct and there's some kid named Luke and Obi-Wan's new friend Anakin is nowhere to be found.  To me it just seems like it would be too jarring and take you out of the story.  In my mind it should just be assumed that people are watching them in release order and that anyone watching in chronological order has already seen the OT.  It's an interesting idea that I won't completely dismiss yet, but I'm not 100% on it.

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Here is the direction I'm taking: Obi Wan crashes on Tatooine as he is fleeing from his pursuers. He wants nothing to do with the politically-motivated wars. That is what he is running from, as Jedis are desirable fighters. After crashing in the desert at night, he makes his way toward civilization (either toward Mos Eisley or the Lars homestead) with adventure along the way. Either he rescues Anakin or Anakin rescues him from bandits,. Then they go to the homestead. Obi Wan's pursuers are still after him and with Anakin's help, they escape from the planet, having developed a new mission along the way...

The nighttime scenes are going to bring a new dimension, we may not even see much of Mos Eisley. I'm debating whether the cantina should play a role or not. Like ANH, the movie is going to be a robust and complete work on its own, with Anakin well on his way to Jedi-hood, so that in E2 it's something like Luke's appearance in ROTJ. I have "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" on the backburner of my brain in terms of the friendship and focus of the story.

The blue elephant in the room.

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To me, Mos Eisley has to play some kind of role in it.  In ANH Ben says "Mos Eisley space port.  You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy." and "Most of the best freighter pilots can be found here."  But it was also established that Ben couldn't get there on his ow.  He needed Luke to take him there in his speeder.  And once he arrived on Tatooine, he never left, so how did he know that you could find "the best freighter pilots" at the cantina? To me the only way he would know what Mos Eisley and the cantina was like in that amount of detail would be that he had been there years before.   Also, completely unrelated: I've been thinking about making Anakin's ship the Millenium Falcon.  Although, I'm not sure if that would be too "putting in references just because I can-ish."  In ANH Han says "You've never heard of the Millenium Falcon."  and it always seemed kind of tongue and cheek to me the way Ben says "Should I have?"  I don't know, I think it would be kind of cool.  What do you all think?

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You make a good argument about the cantina. My original thought was that Obi Wan stumbles into town at dawn after being out in the desert all night. A bandit demands his money, Obi Wan declines while reaching for his lightsaber to find it missing. Another bandit reveals the saber which he obviously pickpocketed when Kenobi first entered town. Not certain it's a good introduction for Anakin to rescue Obi Wan here. But perhaps he could then take him to get a drink and help him find a pilot. I thought it might be good to show why Obi Wan dislikes Mos Eisley so much...so violated as to have his lightsaber taken after a grueling hike in the desert, which to me corresponds well to his body language when talking about it in ANH. Thoughts?

I know you just want to make lots of money by selling Falcon toys! ;)

I think it's too much to have the Falcon. Otherwise I think Vader should have given the Falcon a fond pat, maybe sat in the cockpit to relive old memories in ANH, or something. I think it's better for Han (and Chewy) to have his own story.

The blue elephant in the room.

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Ah, this Falcon talk is bringing me back. If the Falcon is in it, it could be that Anakin made the Kessel run in it during the Clone Wars, and nobody has ever beaten his time. At the time, you see, he was a navigator on a spice freighter out of Kessel. Of course, it wasn't named the Millennium Falcon back then, and it had a different owner. But Obi-wan puts this info together in the cantina in ANH, and his knowing smiles upon hearing this information and seeing the ship that Anakin flew before he knew him tell us all we need to know.

That's the Star Trek Into Darkness approach to writing the movie, I guess.

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