Rogue One: A Star Wars Story recently passed Finding Dory at the domestic box office to officially claim the title of highest grossing domestic film of 2016. As the movie inches toward the $500 million domestic mark and $1 billion international mark, it’s fair to say the first Star Wars spin-off film has proven people are interested in non-episodic trips to a galaxy far, far away.
Now all eyes are on Episode VIII and the next spin-off movie, Han Solo, but there’s lots of chatter over the potential for Ewan McGregor to return to the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi in his own standalone installment. Taking it a generation further, a new fan-made trailer highlights yet another option: Qui-Gon: A Star Wars Story.
Combining audio and video from a variety of sources, including Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Episode I: The Phantom Menace, Martin Scorsese's Silence, and a Darth Maul fan film, YouTube user filminick put together a trailer for a more emotional and intimate story of the most cinematically underserved Jedi Master. The elements of the story portrayed in this trailer may not fit cleanly into current Star Wars canon, but as a proof of concept for a closer look at Qui-Gon Jinn, it does its job. It also proves that Andrew Garfield needs to be in a Star Wars movie.
The master of Obi-Wan Kenobi was featured prominently in The Phantom Menace, unfortunately dying prematurely at the hand of Darth Maul, but his impact on the Star Wars saga stretches all the way to the second to last shot of Return of the Jedi when we see Anakin join Yoda and Obi-Wan as a Force spirit - a technique passed to the other Jedi by Qui-Gon.
As revealed through The Clone Wars animated series, it was Qui-Gon Jinn who was first approached by the mysterious Force Priestesses to learn how to manifest his consciousness after death. He passed that knowledge on to Yoda, who passed it to Obi-Wan, enabling him to communicate with Luke after his death, guiding him to destroy the Death Star and train with Yoda, making it possible for him to eventually become a Jedi and defeat the Emperor.
It’s Qui-Gon’s willingness to go against the dogma of the Jedi Order that makes him such a compelling character. In The Phantom Menace, Obi-Wan even tells him: “If you would just follow the code, you would be on the council.” To which Qui-Gon simply responds: “You still have much to learn my young apprentice.” It's very clear that there's something wrong with the institution of the Jedi Order at this era of Star Wars, but with so much story being crammed into just three prequel films, far too much of the Jedi's fall is left to be inferred by fans who read between the lines.
A movie about Qui-Gon Jinn's journey as a Jedi with a much younger Obi-Wan, or even before he took him on as an apprentice, could help shed light on the failings of the Jedi during their waning years. Obi-Wan was a great Jedi, but if Anakin had received his training from Qui-Gon as intended, he may have learned to challenge the Jedi Council without feeling rejected or pushed away entirely, making him feel like Darth Sidious was the only person willing to help him save his loved ones.
The big question is Liam Neeson’s age. At 64-years-old, he’d be hard pressed to fill the robes of a younger Qui-Gon Jinn, especially when he first played the role almost 17 years ago. However, he’s still pumping out Taken movies that can make him seem ageless - even if it does take some clever editing. They could also re-cast the role or digitally de-age him, but both those methods are already hot button issues for the Star Wars franchise.
What do you think? Would you like to see a Qui-Gon standalone Star Wars movie? Let us hear about it in the comments!
- Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: Episode IX (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019