‘Star Wars Episode VII’ Set 30 Years After ‘Return of The Jedi’

Published 7 months ago by , Updated March 19th, 2014 at 7:24 am,

Star Wars Episode 7 Mark Hamill Carrie Fisher Legacy of Force New Jedi Order Star Wars Episode VII Set 30 Years After Return of The Jedi

Judging by EU timelines, the thirty-year gap Iger laid out would land us somewhere around “The Dark Nest Crisis” (a.k.a. The Killik Expansion). In that saga, a psychic insect race known as the Killiks had disputes with the Galactic Alliance and Jedi Order that led to the brutal conflict known as “The Swarm War“.

The key things to note about this slice of EU, is that it features old players like Han Solo, Leia and Luke Skywalker, as well as pivotal points for their offspring. Jacen Solo (one half of Han and Leia’s twin babies) returns to the Jedi after a long absence (with new Dark Side tendencies in his heart). In that same era, Jacen also becomes Jedi Master to Luke’s son Ben Skywalker, a young boy who joins the Swarm War. Beyond that, this section of the EU continues to introduce and/or feature other elements of Star Wars lore that either have significance to the past films or subsequent EU stories.

The Solo Children Jacen Jaina Anakin  Star Wars Episode VII Set 30 Years After Return of The Jedi

Famous Children of the EU.

The fimmakers behind Episode VII maintained early on that they wouldn’t be beholden to the EU continuity, but lately rumors have pointed to EU characters indeed being mined for these new films. Based on the casting that is either confirmed, almost confirmed, or rumored to be happening, it’s not hard to see the EU connections.

When Girls star Adam Driver was cast in a “villain role” I immediately immediately thought he was good for Jacen Solo’s slow and painful turn to the Darkside; actors like Jesse Plemons (Breaking Bad) and Ed Speleers (Downton Abbey) are rumored for the lead actor shortlist, and fit the mold of Ben Skywalker (or Anakin Solo); before 2012 rounded out, it seemed like many young actresses were stepping up to audition for a role that could easily be Jaina Solo; and even recent casting news like Lupita Nyong’o being considered as a lead had me wondering about her playing Lumiya and/or Vergere, the female Sith Lords who convert Jacen Solo to the Dark Side.

Star Wars Swarm War Art Star Wars Episode VII Set 30 Years After Return of The Jedi

Artwork based on the Swarm War

It doesn’t stop there: The Swarm War involves the Chiss, the alien race that the infamous Admiral Thrawn came from; with a bit of reordering, one could fold the “Thrawn Saga” into the other elements of the Swarm War storyline (and wouldn’t Benedict Cumberbatch be a good Thrawn?). We could go further down this rabbit hole – Lando Calrissian and his YVH battle droids influencing the Swarm War, etc. –  but I’ll stop before we get too deep into nerd knowledge. Suffice to say: evidence of EU ties are piling up high. A year ago, I myself predicted Episode VII could adapt an EU storyline that soon follows The Swarm War so this evidence has been on the table for quite a while.

…And why not? The EU is considered lore by many hardcore Star Wars fans (often the harshest critics of the franchise) and even if the storylines aren’t fit for film, the characters certainly are good inspirations for cinematic character arcs. It’s also a built-in way to use Episode VII as a springboard, since the EU has a clear roadmap for transitioning focus from older characters like Luke, Leia and Han, to new characters like Jacen, Jaina and Ben. By Episode VIIIwe could truly be on to new things.

Admiral Thrawn Tie Fighter 1024x639 Star Wars Episode VII Set 30 Years After Return of The Jedi

Admiral Thrawn (from the Tie Fighter PC game)

With 30 years separating the Star Wars OT and this sequel trilogy, it will be interesting to see what this new era brings, EU-based or not.

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Star Wars: Episode VII is scheduled to open in U.S. theaters on December 18th, 2015.

Source: Ben Fritz (via Twitter) (via /Film)

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  1. Personally, I think the EU should be used sparingly. As a history buff I’d like to see it parallel the history of Rome somewhat. When Gauis Julius Caesar was murdered, it did not end the Roman Empire that he began by seizing power and making himself dictator. Palpatine ruled for about what, 20-25 years. The Republic is still the republic. How many citizens supported the Emperor? How many citizens were sick of the Jedi? How many citizens knew he was Sith?

    • But was there a large-scale armed rebellion precipitating Caesar’s death? I’m not enough of a history buff to be able to answer that, but Palpatine’s demise seems a bit different than Caesar’s. Maybe I’m wrong?

      • The short answer is yes. The Great Roman Civil War. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caesar's_Civil_War

        The Republic in SW is loosely based on Rome. It’s republican beginnings which eventually lead to the Roman Empire. Gaius Julius Caesar is a part of that story, but only part. It is a long story with many notables. The Gaius Julius, first Caesar is similar to Emperor Palpatine in SW. He claimed to be seizing power for the good of the people, but he was a tyrant. I’m using shorthand, the actual history is more complicated and subject to criticism due to limited records. Caesar knew how to wield propaganda, no doubt there.

        If Roman republicans(again small r, the idea not the political party) are the jedi, then Caesar is Sith.

        Just one take on it though, who knows what Lucas’s intent truly was, not sure he always knows anymore.

    • Also, on a realistic note. After 20+ years in power, the Emperor had many allies and people whose entire life/wealth/power were tied to him and the role of Emperor. It is one of the reasons there were many Caesars and later Tzars. Yup, Tzar/Czar comes from Caesar.

    • It was common knowledge that Palpatine was a Sith, but that really didn’t mean much to the average citizen. As long as the trains still run on time. :)

      I think there are better historical parallels than the fall of Rome. One would be the Whiskey Rebellion that took place after the American Revolution. Basically, America was seriously cash strapped in its early days, so several taxes were levied that were very unpopular. Tax collectors were often attacked and eventually Washington had to decide if he was going to send in the military to uphold the law. A serious moral conundrum. He was also battling political rivals that favored a more monarchistic government with close ties to the British Empire.

      And of course there’s WWII. After Hitler was defeated, Germany was divided between the East and the West and thus began the Cold War. I could see the Separatist wanting to get the band back together after the fall of the Empire. Perhaps this new trilogy ends with them rejoining the Republic.

      • I’d almost guarantee Lucas was not thinking of the Whiskey Rebellion when he was inventing galactic history in his SW universe.

        • Why not? If you’re going to look a real world examples of what happens post-rebellion it’s a pretty good one.

          • Like I said ” I don’t think Lucas…”

            I was not giving an option on your idea. But, if you want one then I would say stick to Roman history which few no anything about in detail and even fewer have any political beliefs tied to.

            • *know

            • Well first off, you just misquoted yourself. Secondly, Lucas doesn’t shy away from using the familiar in Star Wars. In the Making of RotJ, Lucas talks about Nixon being the inspiration for Palpatine. And look at all the parallels that the prequels had for what was going on at that point in history. President Bush was criticized for expanding executive powers and leading us into war after the crisis that was 9/11. Sounds a lot like AotC.

              • Should have left off the quotes, i was paraphrasing.

                Lucas had many influences and inspirations. Clearly one of those was the Roman Empire/Republic. I don’t count the prequels or anything said about them. Remember, Lucas made some changes to the original trilogy which made no sense.

                Little known fact, Lucas’s ex wife was a big part of the first trilogy. I always wonder if that is why he draws a blank on some stuff or says something which makes no sense. Han shot first, Greedo never fired; why did he change that scene years later. Im an OG Lucas fan.

                • Marcia really didn’t have much at all to do with Star Wars. And she had left Lucas before RotJ. It’s been speculated that Lucas decided to wrap up the saga prematurely because of his divorce and wanting to take time to raise his kids, which is why RotJ changed dramatically.

                  As for why Greedo shoots first, Lucas said that he didn’t think it was clear enough in the original version that Greedo intended to kill Han. If you already thought that Han was about to be killed then yes, the change is not necessary. I always thought that Greedo was just going to take Han to talk with Jabba, which meant that Han really didn’t need to kill Greedo. If that’s the case then Han will kill someone just because they piss him off. That’s not something that good guys do.

      • I don’t think it was common knowledge. Not heard that, do you have a source? Is it from the movies/Clone Wars or from EU?

        • The novelization for RotS makes it abundantly clear. And keep in mind that Lucas did work with the writers for the novelizations.

          Dave Filoni also talked about it in a Clone Wars featurette (can’t recall which one). It was with regard to what would have happened if Mace had actually killed Palpatine. What he said was that Mace would have been arrested and put on trial for murder. The fact that Palpatine was a Sith wouldn’t have mattered to anyone.

          • The thing is that the Sith were barely known to the Jedi. So, how would the average citizen know what a Sith is? Not like Palpatine went around zapping people. He was always cloaked in the shadows, literally.

            If the people were ok taking down the Jedi with no uprising then the Jedi could not have been very popular. I don’t think the average citizen had any idea that Palpatine was a force user.

            • If it is in the novelization then it is. The prequels were so poorly handled from an overall plot continuity standpoint, imo.

              • That’s really two different questions. Did everyone know Palpatine was a Sith? Yes. Did they know who/what the Sith were? Probably not. But more importantly, did they care? Apparently not.

                And yes, the Jedi were very unpopular. We saw anti-war protestors in front of the Jedi Temple in TCW and when Palpatine said that the remaining Jedi would be hunted down, he got a standing ovation.

            • That’s really two separate questions. Was it common knowledge that Palpatine was a Sith? Yes. Did the average person have any idea what that meant? Probably not.

              And yes, the Jedi were horribly unpopular. In the Clone Wars, you have anti-war protestors in front of the Jedi Temple. And when Palpatine says that the Jedi will be hunted down in RotS, he gets a standing ovation.

            • That’s really two different questions. Do they know he’s a Sith? Yes. Do they know who/what the Sith are? Probably not.

              And yes, the Jedi were not very popular. In The Clone Wars, you see anti-war protestors outside of the Jedi Temple. And in RotS, when Palpatine says that the remaining Jedi will be hunted down, he gets a standing ovation.

        • That’s really two different questions. Did everyone know Palpatine was a Sith? Yes. Did they know who/what the Sith were? Probably not. But more importantly, did they care? Doesn’t look like it.

          And yes, the Jedi were very unpopular. In TCW, you had anti-war protesters outside the Jedi Temple and in RotS, when Palpatine said that the remaining Jedi would be hunted down, he got a standing ovation.

  2. I hope they don’t have them fighting giant bugs I want to see Star Wars not Starship Troopers with lightsabers.

  3. What the hell does a year mean anyway in the Star Wars universe? Whose year are we using? This isn’t Star Trek where they could use an Earth (Terran) year to measure time.

    • Well, go by biological years of the cast.

    • A “Year” in Star Wars is based on a Coruscant year, which is 24 hours, and 368 days. The Galactic Standard Calender is based on an epoch of The Battle of Yavin, with things taking place before the Battle of Yavin (BBY) and After (ABY).

  4. 1) Yes expand the universe. Take a look at what the Clone Wars series has done. In my opinion, it’s the best Star Wars there is.

    2) 30 years?! Perfect! Mark Hamill has to play Luke. Psst Mark….get your ass in the gym.

  5. Mark Hamil and Carrie Fisher are nothing, they look exactly the same as they did during A New Hope!!! Two kids.

    Besides a few skin fluxes they are the same, go to a doctor for one stint Carrie and Mark and you guys fit the part perfectly. If anything the fans will complain they are way too young for this movie, given its 30 years later.

    Harrison Ford is a big question mark but only the most persnickity fan would even notice….the Indiana Jones 4 fanboys will be who say he’s an old man. Harrison Ford my answer is different here for you, buy some rogaine and extenze off the future techs in our modern Star Wars era. Then you’ll look exactly like Han Solo. Presto! Star Wars Episode 7 will be oscar worthy!

  6. This is what we’ve come to? A nameless, faceless Troll on twitter vomits out 90 characters and he becomes “A SOURCE”? Fine, The story will revolve around Lea and Chewbacca’s illegitimate children. Quote me. I’m A SOURCE. At least as reliable as “someone using the name Ben Fritz via twitter who, oddly, seems to have been the only person holding Disney shares that got the memo”. Especially since I hold Disney shares and did not get the memo.

  7. I think the main villain for the next Star Wars trilogy should be Darth Plagueis. He is referenced in Episode 3-Revenge of the Sith. He has survived all this time by swapping bodies. For instance, his apprentice didn’t kill him. He became the apprentice. And when that body got too old, he got a new, younger one. But not just anybody will do. He must seek out individuals with whom the force is strong. Now, he has his sight on Jacen Solo or Ben Skywalker.

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