Rick McCallum Talks ‘Star Wars’ TV Series, Compares It to ‘The Godfather’

Published 4 years ago by , Updated August 13th, 2013 at 10:52 am,

After revealing that the Star Wars television series was sitting on a hefty backlog of scripts earlier in the month, George Lucas proceeded to tell fans that the proposed show would have to wait until technology (once again) caught up to the ambitious vision for his famed universe.

Now, Rick McCallum – producer on Star Wars: Episode I, II & III – gives a little more information on exactly what fans will have to wait to see.

Like news of the prequels more than a decade ago, curiosity has quickly built to a fever pitch after Lucas reignited fans’ interest in the long inactive series. After mentioning that work had not only begun on scripting the Star Wars television show, but that over 50 hours of said script already existed, questions were abound as to what, exactly, the series might entail.

According to an interview McCallum gave to Czech Position, the Star Wars television show may be looking to film in the Czech Republic – the same place that Red Tails, the George Lucas plotted and produced WWII film about the Tuskegee Airmen, was shot. [The Czech Republic] would be one of the primary places because of the talent.”

McCallum mostly reiterated much of what Lucas said was holding production on the series back. But bemoaning the lack of cost-effective technology wasn’t the only aspect of Lucas’ statement McCallum touched upon.

According to McCallum, the 50 hours of scripts are actually “50 hours of third-draft scripts,” which suggests that the series has progressed much further than anyone had originally anticipated. While McCallum failed to mention the name(s) of anyone responsible for the scripts, the news served to make the delay in the show’s arrival that much more frustrating.

However, the juiciest bit of information the producer dropped was an intriguing hint of what the show might actually be like – setting and theme-wise.

“It takes place between episodes three and four, when Luke Skywalker was growing up as a teenager, but it has nothing to do with Luke.”

“Basically, it is like ‘The Godfather’; it’s the Empire slowly building up its power base around the galaxy, what happens in Coruscant, which is the major capital, and it’s [about] a group of underground bosses who live there and control drugs, prostitution.”

McCallum’s comparison to such disparate works as the Francis Ford Coppola classic will likely serve to stir more debate and controversy  around the disputed quality of the most recent Star Wars films. What at first sounded  like a great exploration into a universe that had once brought a great sense of wonder and amazement, now sounds potentially off-track. Are drugs and prostitution the subjects fans hoping to rekindle their love for Star Wars are looking for?

McCallum went on to say that the recent state of the television industry may not welcome a weekly Star Wars program.

“Network television and cable television as we know it are completely imploding, so we’re not really sure that in five years’ time we can release a dramatic one-hour episode because it is all reality TV now.”

I’d be willing to give McCallum the benefit of the doubt (and in fact agree with him) if he’s saying he doesn’t see Star Wars fitting in with one of the big four networks. However, it’s hard to believe that an individual of McCallum’s position would gloss over the fine scripted programming on FX, AMC, HBO and Showtime – any of which would be a more than suitable home for the persistently on-hold series.

As more news drops on the Star Wars television show, we will be sure to keep you posted.

Source: Bleeding Cool, Czech Position

TAGS: Star wars
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  1. I’m a big as fan, but this sounds stupid!

  2. Oops, I mean Star Wars.

  3. wow does that mean we will see starfighters geting car bombed and shoot outs in the streets and darth vader seating in a chair petting a cat.

  4. I love how everyone completely misunderstood what he was saying! Did he say it was going to be based entirely on gangsters? No. He was merely explaining one element of what is going to be a huge project, considering Star Wars has always had a strong connection to criminality, Han Solo was a smuggler, Jabba was a pimp and drug dealer, the main heroes were rebels!

    • relax sam I was just kidding and if star wars is like the godfather then I guess star treks like m.a.s.h

    • Yeah Black Sun has existed for along time in the Expanded Universe and several of its characters have made it to G-Canon status.I.E. Appeared in movies or The CLone Wars CGI cartoon.
      This may be a chance to actually see Prince Xizor,so I’m all for it.

      • And Dash Rendar!

  5. Sorry McCallum, I can smell the BS all the way to my desk in KY. This is the same tired excuses Lucas gave for over 20 years before making the prequels, technology isnt there yet, scripts not finished, not the right atmosphere to release it in, etc. If Lucas has anything to do with the series personally you can expect it to be as inane as the prequels.

    • Actually, the scripts probably are finished. With CLone Wars they plotted out and scripted several seasons years in advance.

    • Yes!
      I so agree. I love what Uncle Geo did in the 70’s, but he won’t let go and let better writers, better production people hold his baby. The Clone Wars is a mess – it’s all over the place… simple kids stories (which is fine) to weird political story lines.
      Let it go Geo, to people who can write and trust in them.

  6. The sequels were actually better(except for empire stikes back).a continuation after episode 6 would be tthe best option.I think jedis make the movies.

  7. HBO likes to spend a lot of money on shows.

    • I’d prefer they spent it on Game of Thrones.

  8. Any thing with Dart Vader in it would be great with a more sleek retro suit surely he had lots of other adversaries before the SW a new hope, surely you could have a parallel universe where Star Wars come in contact with Humans by entering a worm hole .

  9. Hi can take the next two or three decades to develop the series. I don’t care about this anymore. This is not what I like to see.

  10. I actually want to see how this turns out.

  11. I think this is B.S. everything other than the fact that there’s a series in the works and there are scripts. Everything Rick Mcallum ever says is tempered with a degree of marketing B.S. After decades of getting softer, fluffier, lamer, suddenly Star Wars is gonna Do a 180 and go sex and violence!?!? Not buying it. It sure does sound like something to kindle the interest of all the disillusioned grown up fans though. Television is imploding!?!? Nonsense. It’s fractionalizing. While masses are contented with reality-themed scripted work/personality conflict dramas, scripted real family dramas, and contest shows, none of which represent anything about “reality”, there are also, by far and away, some of the best dramatic fictional TV series, ever, coming out season after season right now, thanks to the cable expansion. and they’re highly watched. Also, there’s tons uninspired, mediocre fictional series, most of which are on USA. There’s definitely a place for a crappy Star Wars live action series, and its most likely on Spike ,who already shows Star Wars movies most nights of the week. Rick probably doesn’t watch much TV, but feels qualified to talk about it, because,… i don’t know. He talks, thats what he does.

  12. that sounds horrible

  13. limitations? Battlestar Galactica was able to do an very impressive sci-fi TV show, on a budget small for a sci-fi show, and 6 years ago, ie production some where around 7-8 years ago.

    What limitations would a “main” broadcasting show now have in terms of technology and budget limits.
    BSG was on the Sy-Fy channel of places, not a prime channel.

  14. Drop the in between crap. A show series should be post Return of the Jedi or Knight of the Old Republic. Now that would make a killer series

    • Agreed. I’m a very big Star Wars fan, and while I’m enthusiastic for the television series.. One based off the Old Republic would be MUCH more interesting. Post ROTJ, however… not so much. I couldn’t stand to see a NEW Luke Skywalker… EVER.

  15. I hate to be Captain Bringdown.. but this all smacks of trouble. I get so tired of McCallum and his hyperbole in Star Wars announcements, he seems to have no sense of quality at all, just a little accountant for Lucas. This all smacks of the horrific “Young Indiana Jones Chronicles.” I am dumbfounded about McCallum’s ignorance of TV ! Some of the best ever writing is coming out of TV recently, has he even heard of JUSTIFIED or BOARDWALK EMPIRE?

  16. Are there gonna be episode 7, 8, and 9?