‘Star Wars’ Images Reveal Female Fighter Pilots Cut from ‘Return of the Jedi’

2 years ago by  

The combined price for Disney’s Marvel acquisition and Lucafilm purchase totals over $8 billion. Studio executives face a similar hefty payout, assuming they move forward with (for now, rumored) plans to absorb Hasbro next. Obviously, these decisions are motivated by a desire for more profit – be it in terms of actual movie ticket sales or merchandising tie-ins – but why, exactly, is Disney gobbling up such properties as The Avengers and Star Wars in particular?

Well, the company aims to better appeal to the young male demographic – seeing how it has no problem targeting young girls, thanks to its Princess movie and toy line – and thus, is busy amassing boy-friendly comic book and/or sci-fi franchises to accomplish that end. Star Wars is, after all, an essential part of our pop culture heritage, but there’s no denying: in terms of the films’ casting, it’s a bit of a boys-only club.

Case in point: rarely-seen photos from Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi have emerged online, revealing what would’ve been the first three female fighter pilots in the franchise’s history. Instead, that honor eventually went to Celia Imrie, who appeared as ‘Fighter Pilot Bravo 5′ during the space battle climax of Episode I – The Phantom Menace – assuming you choose to not count the green-clad female pilot (featured in the galleries above and below), whose voice was dubbed over with a man’s during post-production.

Meanwhile, the other fighters pictured in our galleries (including, French actress Vivienne Chandler) either ended up on the cutting room floor or never made it past the pre-viz stage; that’s despite Chandler’s X-Wing pilot having over a substantial amount of dialogue (supposedly over a page in a certain script draft). It has been speculated they were abandoned over concerns that audiences wouldn’t take well to watching women in serious peril or being blown to smithereens (back in 1983, that is).


Of course, over the three decade that’ve passed since then, female characters are becoming more and more commonplace in the sci-fi “workplace” – be it in terms of cult television series (Battlestar Galactica, The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Firefly), film franchises (Resident Evil) or mainstream blockbusters (The Hunger Games). Hence, it’s a great time for Episode VII screenwriter Michael Arndt – and the person who walks away with the Episode VII directing job – to create some kick-ass female pilots and warriors alike for a new generation of Star Wars fans to enjoy (and older ones too).

It also makes sense from a business perspective, in terms of reaching out more to young women who aren’t Star Wars fans; not to mention, holding onto many who already adore George Lucas’ fantastical sci-fi universe. That’s all the more difficult to pull off, when you keep on giving just one female character significant screen time per trilogy (ie. Padme in Episodes I-III, Leia in Episodes IV-VI).

You can find out more about the lost female fighter pilots in Return of the Jedi by checking out the Star Wars ‘Original Trilogy’ Blu-ray.

Meanwhile, Star Wars: Episode VII is arriving Summer 2015.

Source: Buzzfeed



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  1. Is that second picture the chick from “Murder She Wrote”?

    • You’re thinking of Angela Lansbury – and no, it’s definitely not.

      • Looks somewhat like her though.

  2. I think I remember seeing those somewhere in the extras of the Blu-ray set.

    • Yeah, they’re apparently in the Blu-ray extras for Jedi.

    • I am sure that, eventually, Lucas will re-re-release yet another version of the films, with the female Jedi included, especially now that someone has made an issue of it.

      • Not to mention an homage to the Tuskegee Airmen with the Star Wars Red Tails X Wing edition with added ethnic pilots, Cuba Gooding Jr would make a quality Y Wing pilot, Yyyyyyyyy is your career so bad?!

  3. That green/A-Wing pilot in the first photo looks like the one who crashed into the bridge of the super star destroyer – Arvel Crnyd? Maybe I’m wrong about that.

    • jerryofthewest,

      I thought so too. If that’s the same person I always thought he/she had a very feminine look, but they die so fast I couldn’t be sure.

  4. Disney…if buying Hasbro, pllease seriously consider re-releasing the original figures (not re-designs) in the original packaging! Sales would go through the roof, and you’d make millions of fans very happy indeed!


  5. Wasn’t there supposedly more footage of the Calamari-piloted B Wing fighters that was going to be included on the special edition of ‘Return of the Jedi’ but was held back for a future release… or so says the Wikipedia page, anyone here confirm or deny?

  6. Lucas is not only a racist but also a sexist it seems. I always found it odd that there were barely any women in star wars. Now we all know why. ALL UF US AGREE!!!!!

  7. As if a women could fly an X-wing.

  8. I don’t know why this has been posted. The Blu-ray set, which is the worst travesty to the Original Trilogy EVER, was released last year and these pictures are old news. With all of the Episode VII news lately, why the hell would you dig this up? The pictures did not “just appear” online as you make it sound.

  9. How is Lucas a racist?

    Also, if you are trying to say that I share your opinion by saying “ALL UF US AGREE!”, then you’re dead wrong.

    Also, check your spelling before you go on an angry troll tirade. It’s “Of” not “Uf”. Thank you.

  10. Lucas: “Woman, you’re doing it wrong, unless you can make me a sandwich while you’re playing with the steering wheel, get ur but back in the kitchen!”

  11. I’m sorry, but I’ve seen all 3 of those women in RotJ. It must have been in a cut of the movie somewhere. TV version perhaps? Seriously, I’ve seen those scenes.

  12. Get real.
    The female in the first row far right is
    too OLD and decrepit for the cockpit
    AND BTW by the time a male hits that age he is either retired or riding a desk NOT in a fighter
    One more time la la land does not get it right, but what else is new?
    Even media has no clue……..e.g.
    I just heard an anchor refer to the SEAL who was killed in a rescue attempt on behalf of the American referred to as a ‘soldier’

  13. I think the first one is Michael J Fox

  14. Enough with the globalist feminist agenda already! It’s nothing to do with equality and everything to do with subjugating men and empowering women as much as possible, The reason for this is the following:

    The Central banking globalists implementing the world government need to first destroy resistance.
    Men are physically more dangerous, more likely to challenge authority (Men are more inclined to view totalitarian Government as an alpha male threat, women view it as a protector). Men also have slightly higher IQ by 5 points on average as confirmed by countless major studies, which is neither here nor there, but the important characteristic is the relative distributions, men’s IQs are more spread across the spectrum whereas women’s are more grouped around the middle. This makes evolutionary sense, the bigger the difference between men’s abilities the more easy it is for women to select the fittest mates, also the best of a diverse group of men is going to be much more intelligent than the best selected of a group of average men. Thus humanity’s intellectual evolution advances more rapidly. Thus there are more stupid men than women but many more genius level men than women, and highly intelligent, critically thinking, physically strong, able to fight males is not what they want.

    The Govt-controlled media has been engaging in an anti male campaign, portraying men as incompetent, lying, dumb, untrustworthy, sports-obsessed buffoons to subjugate men and give more power to women, to make society more controllable and easier to manipulate. The majority of movies now routinely portray women as kung fu expert kick-ass type traditionally masculine roles (nothing wrong with a bit of that but the prevalence and obvious overarching trend is unmistakeable) So some people are going to respond negatively to my post from a stance of cognitive dissonance and emotional investment, especially women but I’m right, to be honest it’s fairly obvious to anyone that’s done any research into globalism and their social engineering methods.