It's official: Disney is making stand alone Star Wars movies, based on existing characters from the franchise, but unrelated to the upcoming trilogy from J.J. Abrams. They're being written by Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back) and Simon Kinberg (X-Men: Days of Future Past). And while Disney hasn't made an official announcement yet, we're hearing rumors that Yoda is first.
Not who we would have picked. Well, not by his lonesome. (See #5 on the list for details.)
Few franchises are as densely populated as the Star Wars movies, and that's before you factor in all the novels, comic books, TV series and video games elaborating on the original storyline. Every character from the original trilogy had their own action figure, and their own backstory. The world of Star Wars has more tales than anyone could ever read, let alone write, and certainly more than they could possibly make movies about. But do they all deserve their own movie? No. Of course not. We like Lobot as much as the next guy, but watching a whole movie of him getting an endorsement deal with Skull Candy is completely unnecessary.
So we've put together a list of Nine Star Wars Characters Who Deserve Their Own Movie (well, eleven if you're getting technical), and even pitching some ideas for what we'd like to see on-screen, and which directors we'd like to make them. We're establishing a few rules as we go along, just so we're all on the same page: since Disney isn't taking the ancillary materials as gospel, so only characters who have appeared in the actual Star Wars movies can make the cut. We're also ignoring out of hand any major character whose original actor has sufficiently aged out of the part, since recasting Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Leia Organa or Lando Calrissian would just be too damned distracting.
Let's start by thinking outside the box with…
Dexter Jettster’s led an interesting life, supplying weapons to bounty hunters and mining on the planet of Subterrel before finally settling down to a cozy life running the aptly named “Dexter’s Diner” on the planet of Coruscant. Never really “out of the game,” he’s been known to traffic in information, like the origins of Jango Fett’s weapons, to Jedi like Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones. After the rise of the Galactic Empire, he supposedly became one of “the erased,” a group who eliminated all trace of their identities to avoid the whole kerfuffle.
CraveOnline’s Pitch: This might seem like a weird one to you, but think about it… a well-connected hero trying to stay out of conflict whilst still doing the right thing whenever possible? If that sounds like Casablanca to you, then you probably understand why we think Everybody Comes to Dexter’s is a pretty good idea. Throwing Dexter Jettster into a tale of espionage and intrigue during the changeover between the democratically elected regime and Emperor Palpatine’s tyrannical rule would be an excellent opportunity to explore just how the day-to-day life in the galaxy was affected by the Empire (something, it must be noted, that they’ve never really tackled so far in any of the movies). He’s not much of a looker, that Dexter Jettster, so we imagine he’d be the emotional crux of the film, but technically the third or fourth lead to a newer cast of human rebels, imperial generals and maybe even a runaway Jedi youngling or two trying to escape Coruscant before their execution.
Proposed Director: Shawn Levy (Real Steel)
Captain Raymus Antilles dates back to the very first scene of Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope, when R2-D2 and C-3PO were passengers on his ship, the Tantive IV, during an assault by the Empire. A prominent figure on the late planet Alderaan, he was a key figure during The Clone Wars and a member of the Rebel Alliance until his murder by Darth Vader, and the owner of the franchise’s famous droids between the prequel trilogy and original, “classic” trilogy. Captain Antilles’ history has been spotted with inconsistencies, having been apparently cast too old during The Revenge of the Sith to plausibly be the same character in A New Hope, and according to the expanded universe he may have actually been separated from the popular droid characters for most of the 19 years between the trilogies.
[Editor's Note: No, we really couldn't find a more heroic picture. Sorry.]
CraveOnline’s Pitch: Screw the expanded universe. We say Captain Antilles had those droids on him the whole time. R2-D2 and C-3PO aren’t quite proactive enough to warrant an entire feature film of their own, but as sidekick characters to a heroic starship captain, they could return to their original popularity, commenting on the life-or-death situations that arise from rebelling against the Empire decades before it became popular. The story of Raymus Antilles would be free to go in any exciting direction, perhaps a Das Boot-inspired space war drama or even a rip-snorting Master & Commander adventure, provided those droids are allowed to do their thing opposite a hero on a new, epic mission.
Proposed Director: Justin Lin (Fast Five)
Everyone loves Darth Maul, but that must be because he looks cool and does backflips because we know jack squat about this particular Dark Lord of the Sith. His storyline was expanded in the books and comics, but not very much. He was Emperor Palpatine’s first apprentice, and he got killed off in the first movie, but we assume he did some cool stuff before that.
CraveOnline’s Pitch: We prefer keeping Darth Maul an intergalactic man of mystery, so we think he’d be best suited for a balls-to-the-wall, action-packed, mission-centric action movie in which Emperor Palpatine assigns him a seemingly impossible task to prove himself. Darth Maul cuts a swath through armies of alien opponents – each of whom seem, at least, to be worse villains than Maul himself – in a pulse-pounding, highly choreographed thriller nestled snugly in the galaxy’s greyest moral areas.
Proposed Director: Gareth Evans (The Raid: Redemption)
Wedge Antilles (no relation to Raymus) was the only X-wing pilot to survive the original Star Wars trilogy, besides Luke Skywalker of course. As such, he’s earned a pretty legendary status amongst fans of the franchise, a badass whose story has never been told… on film. In the expanded universe, we’ve learned that Wedge Antilles went on to many other wars after the Rebellion, and only joined in the first place after the Empire killed his girlfriend, prompting him to steal a starfighter and exact revenge on her murderers.
CraveOnline’s Pitch: Well, that’s two movies right there, isn’t it? A post-trilogy war story about an ace pilot accepting greater responsibility in the war effort against a mighty foe sounds not unpleasingly like Rick Hunter’s storyline in “Robotech,” and could work out just as well. But then there’s Wedge Antilles’ origin story, a darker, action-packed vengeance film about a rebel pilot using a stolen Headhunter-class starship and taking the fight to the Empire solo. Frankly, either would work, but it might be stronger to do both at the same time, with the darker flashbacks informing a larger-scale war film in which Wedge does battle with the remnants of the Empire, one of whom turns out to have been actually involved in his true love’s death years before.
Proposed Director: Gore Verbinski (The Pirates of the Caribbean)
Mace Windu and Yoda
The former Master of the Jedi Order Mace Windu was played in the prequel trilogy by Samuel L. Jackson, and was a prominent figure in the Clone Wars until his apparent death at the hands of Emperor Palpatine, aka Darth Sidious. We’ve seen him in action at the Battle of Geonosis, but his cinematic adventures to date have been limited to a supporting role as a Jedi General, offering advice but generally staying off the front lines of combat.
And Yoda is a Yoda. He's old and good with the Force and kinda talks weird. Everyone loves him because he's awesome and stuff.
CraveOnline’s Pitch: Samuel L. Jackson has already said he wants to come back to the franchise, hypothesizing that Mace Windu survived the murder attempt and gone into hiding, much like Yoda. That’s all well and good, but we think Mace Windu is better suited for yet another prequel – this time to the entire prequel trilogy – showing the Jedi at the height of his powers. We also think this would be the perfect vehicle for Yoda’s return as well, even though he’s supposedly getting his own solo movie (if the rumors are to believed). Mace Windu and Yoda as young(-er) Jedi, taking on the galaxy for the first time, together at least, as a mismatched buddy cop movie against the backdrop of Star Wars is the perfect opportunity to expand on both of their characters, and the history of the Republic, without incorporating any of the troublesome prequel trilogy content.
Proposed Director: David Koepp (Premium Rush)
You guys know Chewbacca, right? This Wookiee was Han Solo’s stalwart hetero-lifemate throughout the original Star Wars trilogy, proving himself in friendship and battle time and again. Though a beloved character, and the recipient of a prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award from MTV (back when that meant something), Chewbacca hasn’t been at the center of a live-action Star Wars story since the atrocious “Star Wars Holiday Special.” The time has come to correct that.
CraveOnline’s Pitch: Yes, he’s a member of the core cast, but unlike Luke, Leia and Han, if they had to recast Chewbacca you’d probably never even know it until the credits rolled. He was active in the original Clone Wars (Wookiees live a very, very long time), but more interestingly, he was supposedly enslaved between the two cinematic trilogies before leading an uprising that would eventually tie into his introduction to Han Solo. We like the idea of Chewbacca as a prisoner leading a rebellion against the Empire, with great potential for intriguing supporting cast members and a story that combines Gladiator with Cool Hand Chewie. Triumph over adversity, Star Wars-style.
Proposed Director: Rupert Wyatt (Rise of the Planet of the Apes)
Tag & Bink
Tag Greenley and Bink Otauna were untalented Jedi younglings whose attempt to fix their grades accidentally erased the planet Kamino from the Jedi Archives. They ran away, bumped into Anakin Skywalker, and fed him all those crappy pick-up lines in Attack of the Clones to help him score with Padme. Their misadventures from found them taking various important, but previously unseen, roles in the original Star Wars trilogy, filling in a bunch of plot holes along the way.
CraveOnline’s Pitch: We’ve been sticking to characters already introduced in the Star Wars movies so far, but Tag & Bink were technically always there, even if we never knew their names before. The original comic book, written by Kevin Rubio (who also created the popular Star Wars/”COPS” parody Troops), was a takeoff on Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, which showed how two normal guys wove in and out of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, and we think doing the same thing with the original trilogy – Forrest Gump-ing two new, hilarious and affable new characters into the mix – is a great idea.
Proposed Director: Kevin Rubio (Troops)
You know who he is.
CraveOnline’s Pitch: Darth Vader is one of the greatest movie villains of all time… in the original Star Wars trilogy. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, the prequel trilogy diminished Vader’s villainy by making him a relatable, if whiny, pop culture figure. A film set between Episodes III and IV, showing Darth Vader once again as a dangerous, faceless villain throughout the galaxy, navigating politics and black ops missions for Emperor Palpatine and succumbing to the absolute depths of the Dark Side is just what we need to restore the character to his former glory as one of cinema’s great all-time badasses.
Proposed Director: Pete Travis (Dredd)
The greatest bounty hunter in the galaxy, the most popular bounty hunter on Earth. Always a figure of intense mystery before the prequel trilogy told us he’s a clone of another bounty hunter, Jango Fett, who – like his progeny – died anticlimactically.
CraveOnline’s Pitch: Captain America: The First Avenger director Joe Johnston has publicly stated that he wants to make a Boba Fett movie. We say just let him do whatever he wants, but really, we just want a Luc Besson-style solo adventure with Boba Fett taking a case, kicking ass at it, and eventually revealing via flashback that he crawled out of that stupid Sarlacc Pit from Return of the Jedi. Dude got knocked in there BY ACCIDENT. The Fett deserved better…
UPDATE: …and it looks like he might get it. Apparently, Fett — owner of the galaxy's coolest Vette — is getting one of the first two Star Wars spin-off films, along with his Empire prey Han Solo. Well, that didn't take long, did it?
Proposed Director: Joe Johnston (Captain America: The First Avenger)
What Star Wars character do you want to get their own spin-off? And doing what? Drop us a comment below.