By the time the events of George Lucas’ original Star Wars movie roll around, the Jedi are all but extinct. Only a handful of Jedi and Force-sensitive individuals, such as Yoda and Obi-Wan Kenobi, have survived. At this point, clearly evident by Han Solo’s reaction, the vast majority of the galaxy were unaware the Jedi existed at all — and that’s all thanks to Emperor Palpatine, aka Darth Sidious, and his conniving plot to eradicate all memory of the Jedi and their renowned Order.
As all Star Wars fans know, in Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, Palpatine turned the galaxy against the Jedi by reorganizing the Galactic Republic into the First Galactic Empire, and subsequently initiating Order 66, an order implanted into the clone trooper’s minds using inhibitor chips that designated the Jedi as enemies of the Republic. In doing so, the clones were compelled to turn on their Jedi brethren and kill them by any means necessary, and what followed was known as the Great Jedi Purge.
The thing is, not everyone died. Some heroes managed to survive the Empire’s treacherous act. Here are 9 Jedi (And 6 Force-Sensitive Good Guys) Who Survived Order 66.
15. Obi-Wan Kenobi
Most of the Jedi weren’t on Coruscant when the Chancellor created the First Galactic Empire, including Obi-Wan Kenobi. So when the newly self-appointed Emperor enacted Order 66, Commander Cody unwillingly betrayed Obi-Wan and attempted to kill him on Utapau. But since Obi-Wan needed to survive in order to set Luke Skywalker on his path to becoming a Jedi Knight (as seen in the original Star Wars movie), Master Kenobi kept on plugging after a clone trooper miraculously missed his shot.
After going to Coruscant with Yoda, Obi-Wan fought his former apprentice on Mustafar, where he left Darth Vader burned, scarred, and dying. Shortly thereafter, Padme gave birth to Anakin Skywalker’s twins, and upon delivering Luke to Owen and Beru Lars, Obi-Wan went into hiding in the sand dunes of Tatooine. He remained there until the events of the original Star Wars movie, though thanks to the recent Star Wars Rebels midseason trailer, we know he had an adventure or two in between.
Yoda was, for all intents and purposes, the head of the Jedi Order. He was the oldest Jedi Master on the Council and, therefore, he’d been appointed to be the Jedi Grand Master. With all his years of experience and wisdom, Yoda knew something was afoot during the Clone Wars.
In Revenge of the Sith, when the clone troopers carried out Order 66, Yoda clearly felt the loss of each and every Jedi the clones killed. When it came time for them to kill him, he reacted swiftly and took them out first. (You’d think the Empire would have sent in the big guns to take out someone as powerful as Yoda.) Thanks to Tarfful and Chewbacca, the little green engine that could managed to escape Kashyyyk and join Senator Bail Organa and Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Then, after failing to defeat the Emperor and Dark Lord of the Sith on Coruscant, Yoda went into hiding on Dagobah, where he remained for more than 20 years until Luke arrived and requested to be trained in the ways of the Force.
13. Ahsoka Tano
The vast majority of Star Wars fans have only watched the movies, which means there is a whole galaxy of characters and stories they aren’t aware of, and one of those characters is Ahsoka Tano. A former padawan of future Darth Vader Anakin Skywalker, Ahsoka was training to become a Jedi Knight during the Clone Wars when she was falsely accused of bombing the Jedi Temple. Then, when the Jedi Council admitted their mistake (though only barely) she opted not to rejoin the order, for she could no longer trust their judgment.
Aside from Obi-Wan Kenobi, the one person who we would assume Vader would have the Emperor instruct the clones to kill would be Ahsoka, his former apprentice. Of course, fans of Star Wars Rebels know the two eventually meet again in the second season on the planet Malachor. While we know Vader survives the battle, we don’t know Ahsoka’s fate. Still, no matter the outcome of that fateful duel with her former master, Ahsoka managed to evade the clones for years.
12. Kanan Jarrus (Caleb Dume)
Much like the situation with Ahsoka Tano, Caleb Dume was a padawan during the Clone Wars. He became Master Depa Billiba’s apprentice when she fought with the clones as a Jedi General. Shortly before the fall of the Jedi Order, Caleb successfully passed the trials and became a full-on Jedi Knight, one of the Order’s last inductees before its collapse. And mere moments prior to the Emperor initiating Order 66, Caleb trained with his master on Kaller, learning Form III.
Billaba sacrificed herself to save Caleb shortly after the conclusion of the Battle of Kaller, one of the final conflicts of the Clone Wars, when the clones turned on them. Caleb then changed his name to Kanan Jarrus and went into hiding (the Jedi have a proclivity for this) before joining up with Phoenix Squadron and the Rebel Alliance. Though he is currently leading the crew of the Ghost on Star Wars Rebels, he will, presumably, die sometime before the Battle of Yavin.
In the short story Star Wars: The End of History, it’s revealed that Master Uvell, one of the Jedi Generals who fought during the Clone Wars, survived Order 66. Despite the Empire’s blatant attempt to destroy the Jedi, including any memory of their existence (as explained by Director Krennic in Rogue One), Uvell took it upon himself to preserve the history and artifacts of the Order, fearing that one day the Empire would truly eradicate the Jedi.
After surviving the initial wave of Jedi killings, Uvell spent his remaining years scouring the galaxy and collecting any and all artifacts he could find. He then entrusted them with the antiques dealer Antron Bach, who took them to an abandoned Geonosian colony. Although it’s known that Uvell survived Order 66, we don’t know how long he lasted, or who ultimately killed him. Furthermore, there is no known photo of Uvell, so, unfortunately, we don’t really know what he looks like either.
Upon the conclusion of the Clone Wars and the initiation of Order 66, several Jedi went into hiding, fearing they would be executed by either clone troopers or Darth Vader himself. One of those Jedi was Khandra, who served in the waning years of the Republic.
She and a few other Jedi fled to the Outer Rim Territories at the onset of the Great Jedi Purge. She stayed on the planet Anoat, a remote system that remained independent from the Galactic Republic and, therefore, far from the Empire’s reach. She survived for some time on that planet, only to be pursued by one of the Emperor’s Inquisitors. She then fled the planet but was ultimately taken down by the Inquisitor on the planet Burnin Konn.
If she weren’t tracked by the Inquisitor, she would have stayed on Anoat and eventually been killed by the Empire, seeing as they took control of the planet and gassed its citizens with poisons that turned them into feral people, known as Lurkers.
Mususiel is another Jedi who fled with Khandra to Anoat in order to escape the Jedi Purge. There, they hunkered down inside in ancient Jedi shrine and only left to hunt for food. Unfortunately, it was only a matter of time before the Empire discovered them. Interestingly, they managed to survive on the planet for over 20 years following the formation of the Galactic Empire. The Empire only found them after they lost the Battle of Endor.
It’s unclear, though, if Mususiel became disillusioned with the Jedi Order the same way Khandra did. Still, no matter what each Jedi thought of one another, Mususiel still sacrificed herself for her friends when the Empire came calling. She fought the Empire, and possibly an Inquisitor, so that Khandra and Nuhj could escape Anoat and flee to Burnin Konn. Sadly, she didn’t last very long. She was eventually killed, and an Inquisitor was dispatched after her companions.
8. Zubain Ankonori
The story of the four surviving Jedi — Khandra, Mususiel, Nuhj, and Zubain Ankonori — debuted in the mobile game Star Wars: Uprising, the first canon mobile game set between the events of Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi and Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens. The story takes place in the Anoat sector, where the Empire has implemented an iron blockade. It’s in this game that the Jedi’s stories are revealed in a hologram recording.
When the Empire finally came to the remote system, Mususiel bought them all time to flee Anoat. As previously mentioned, Khandra and Nuhj fled to Burnin Konn, while Zubian, on the other hand, went to the planet Mataou. It was there that the Inquisitor the Empire ordered to hunt down Mususiel’s friends fought and killed Zubain (he was a busy guy). Unfortunately, Zubain was the unidentified Inquisitor’s first target. It’s unclear, though, how long Zubain survived following his escape from Anoat.
After the Inquisitor arrived on Anoat and killed Zubain, the rest of the three Jedi attempted to flee, but were trapped by the dark warrior. So, Mususiel sacrified herself, as previously mentioned, thus allowing Khandra and Nuhj to escape. They fled to the planet Burnin Konn, a chromium mining colony on the outskirts of the Anoat sector. They managed to survive there only for a short amount of time before the Inquisitor found them and slayed them both in battle.
Even if they did endure and kill the Inquisitor, in the end, it would have been futile. The remnants of the Empire raided the planet not three months after the Battle of Endor, as depicted in the Shattered Empire comic series. Interestingly, the Inquisitor who killed Khandra and Nuhj took all of their belongings back to the Anoat system and placed their stuff, including their lightsabers, in the Imperial vault on Nar Hypa.
6. Chirrut Imwe
Gareth Edwards’ Rogue One: A Star Wars Story incorporated several elements from both the Star Wars animated shows and Star Wars Legends into the main, cinematic saga. Much like The Force Awakens, Rogue One takes elements from George Lucas’ original Star Wars drafts and brings them into the fold, such as the Guardians of the Whills. Chirrut Imwe, played by Donnie Yen, is one of those Guardians, who, thanks to the Empire, no longer has a purpose.
Considering that the Guardians of the Whills were not only followers of the Force but also protectors of the Temple of the Kyber on Jedha, the same temple that the Empire raided, it’s a wonder why they weren’t hunted by the Empire just like the Jedi were. Still, Chirrut managed to stay alive and fight the Empire head-on despite being blind. As a staunch believer in the Jedi Order, Chirrut openly followed the ways of the Force even though he wasn’t an actual Jedi, and that, presumably, would have made him a target for the Empire.
Bendu is a unique character compared to everyone else on this list. He’s not a Jedi, nor is he a Sith; he’s a Force-sensitive individual who claims to be a representation of the balance of the Force, the sweet spot between the light and dark sides of the Force. And when the Rebels erected a base on the planet Atollon, Bendu awoke from his deep slumber after sensing Kanan Jarrus’ imbalance in the Force.
Although he is not a Jedi, early drafts of George Lucas’ original Star Wars movie contained the name Jedi Bendu. Still, Bendu knows the ways of the Force enough to mentor both Kanan and Ezra Bridger, which would make him a target for the Empire. But his ability to blend in with the environment of Atollon and mask his Force abilities allows him to protect himself. Plus, being able to disappear at will must surely help.
4. Lor San Tekka
An original character created for J.J. Abrams’ The Force Awakens, Lor San Tekka, played by the legendary Max Von Sydow, is a former member of the Church of the Force who happened to come across the missing piece of the map needed to find Luke Skywalker. (The hero of the original trilogy apparently went searching for the first Jedi temple on Ahch-To after his apprentice, Ben Solo/Kylo Ren, went to the dark side.)
Although he is not a Jedi, San Tekka is well aware of their existence as well as the power of the Force. He is a believer through and through, a man who studied the ways of the Force as an underground faith during the reign of the Empire. He did this despite not being known to be Force-sensitive himself, which makes him a notable exception on this list.
Since he was born around the start of the Clone Wars, he is one of the oldest people to survive Order 66, second only to Maz Kanata. But since he wasn’t Force-sensitive, one would wonder if he was even a target at all. Considering his knowledge of the Force and his forbidden study of it, we would be inclined to assume he was a target.
3. Maz Kanata
As previously mentioned, Lor San Tekka is one of the oldest people to survive Order 66, second only to Maz Kanata, who seems to have lived longer than Yoda ever did. Born over a thousand years prior to the rise of the First Order, Maz is a pirate queen who maintains a castle on the planet of Takodana, where acting on intergalactic politics is forbidden. Despite that, she really hates the First Order.
In The Force Awakens, Maz tells Rey that she is no Jedi, but she knows the Force. After all, according to Lucasfilm, Maz “protects objects that speak to her through the Force, certain that one day the Force will, in turn, guide other seekers to find these relics” (just as Anakin’s lightsaber called to Rey). According to the movie’s visual guide, after the Emperor enacted Order 66, Maz kept her Force abilities a secret, presumably fearing that the Empire would come for her one day.
2. Star Wars Legends Characters
Canonically, only a handful of Jedi survived Order 66 and the Great Jedi Purge that followed, and only a handful more of Force-sensitive good guys also survived, though they weren’t hunted like the Jedi were. But if we take a look into Star Wars Legends, we see that many more Jedi did, indeed, survive. However, it’s worth noting that while many Jedi in Legends survived Order 66, most of them eventually perished at the hands of the Empire.
Among the Jedi who survived (at least initially) are: Klossi Anno, Siadem Forte, Iwo Kulka, Maris Brood, Falon Grey, Aqinos, Geith Eris, Callista Ming, Plett, Qu Rahn, Tyneir Renz, Drun Cairnwick, and Kento Marek (father of The Force Unleashed‘s Galen Marek), among countless others. Many of the surviving Jedi either hid on deserted planets, joined the Rebel Alliance, or even fell to the dark side. Eventually, the vast majority of them would be killed either by an Inquisitor or Darth Vader himself
1. Luke, Leia, and Maul
Luke and Leia were both born shortly after the formation of the Galactic Empire and execution of Order 66. Considering that they are the offspring of Anakin Skywalker and without a doubt Force-sensitive individuals, it’s a wonder why the Empire didn’t hunt them down, at least in Luke’s case. Leia became a senator. Then again, Darth Vader likely never knew he had children, let alone twins, since Palpatine had told him that he’d killed Padme on Mustafar.
Then there’s Darth Sidious’ former apprentice, Maul, who went into hiding following his defeat on Naboo. He spent the greater part of the Clone Wars plotting his revenge against both the Jedi and the Sith, though he eventually failed in his endeavor. Then, during the time between the prequel and original trilogies, Maul occasionally allied himself with the Jedi, only to later betray them. In all likelihood, being a former Sith Lord and strong Force-sensitive warrior, he would’ve been a prime target for the Empire, yet he still managed to survive over and over again.
What other force-sensitive good guys managed to survive the Great Jedi Purge? Let us know in the comments.