We don't often hear about the original concept for a movie beyond a little concept art or a rumor. Why? Well, because scripts are generally mangled beyond recognition and later forgotten. Star Wars, for example, changed drastically from its original conception to what we later saw in A New Hope.
Interestingly, the original outright-bizarre screenplay for "The Star Wars" was immortalized by Dark Horse Comics and turned into a non-canon masterpiece.
Dare to read on and you'll find the weirdest shit from Dark Horse Comics's adaption of the original Star Wars concept. Let's start with the iconic characters...
1. Han Solo: Wookiee Hunter!
Do you recognize the most iconic character in the history of science fiction? No? I'll give you a hint: the big green guy who looks like a Trandoshan bodybuilder is Dark Horse Comics's take on the original concept of Han Solo.
The original Han Solo was Ureallian, a species known for being Wookiee hunters, not unlike the Transoshan slavers seen throughout the extended Star Wars universe.
Ultimately George Lucas decided the smuggler would be more well-received as a human, and over time the character became the cocky figure we know today. Moreover, instead of being of a wookiee-hunting species named "Ureallian," in the final draft Han Solo had a wookiee co-pilot and came from the planet Corellia.
2. Luke Skywalker... a grizzled general?
Okay, I suppose this doesn't seem so surreal now that we've seen Old Grizzles Skywalker in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, but apparently instead of our young farm boy we almost had General Luke Skywalker, who was more of an Obi-Wan Kenobi type character.
Also, apparently old Grizzles trained a young man named Anakin Starkiller, whose father was part machinei. Admittedly, you can see how this story evolved into Star Wars as we know it today; it seems Anakin was Luke, Luke was Obi-Wan and... well... take a guess at who the Cyborg was.
3. Darth Vader
Since his first appearance in 1977, Darth Vader has become a cultural icon and a symbol of all things dark, as he serves as the embodiment of pure evil. Darth Vader was always lined up to be the big bad of Star Wars, however, when originally conceived he was actually in the form of two separate characters: Vader and Kane Starkiller.
Interestingly, Vader was originally not a Sith Lord at all, simply a figure of great authority for the Empire. Only later — well after his original conception — did he get the full-body Vader-suit and his signature Force choke. Also, it was originally Kane Starkiller, father of young Anakin, who was more cyborg than man, with just a head and arm hinting at the human he once was.
After Star Wars went through a little re-shuffle, these two characters blended into one and we were left with Darth Vader, Lord of the Sith: part man, part Sith, part angry cybernetic microwave.
4. The Jedi and their vaunted Force
There were many differences between the original Star Wars concept and that which finally hit the screens: the Galactic Empire were benevolent victims of the brutal rebel uprising, which gave birth to the Sith. Moreover, had this connection come to be, we'd have had Jedi, or Jedi-Bindu, who were less like space monks and more like warriors — defenders of the Empire.
The original story of the Empire being toppled in order for the Sith to take over actually reads like Darth Sidious' rise to power; replace "Empire" with "Republic" and the story of the prequel trilogy starts to take shape.
5. The Knights of Sith
Followers of the wider Star Wars universe, especially anything focusing on the Old Republic, will know that before the rule of two there were many Sith. In games such as Star Wars: The Old Republic we have the chance to see Sith Empires with thousands of Force-wielding binary oppositions to the Jedi. Why is this relevant? Well, apparently the original Star Wars concept would have had the Jedi facing off against a Sith force as large as their own, on equal footing.
Personally, I like the thought of the multiple Jedi vs. an equal number of Sith... that would have made for a hell of a prequel trilogy.
Disney is flooding us with Star Wars movies over the next few years, beginning with Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, which premieres on December 16, 2016. Are you excited for the next stage of cinematic Star Wars?