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Thread: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

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    Default BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    Anyone ever read it? I read it quite awhile ago and then again recently. It is quite extensive and shoots down George's claims that it's always been Anakin/Vader's story which I agree and never believed anyway. It was Luke's story. It only changed when GL rewrote ESB and fused Vader and Father Skywalker together. Even thjough this is not really what the book is really about it just lays out the genesis and changes it all went through and how it all came about. Pretty good history book.

    Anyway they lay out everything of how it all came together and where the PT came from, etc. You can buy it from Amazon which is expensive or I have the PDF if anyone is interested.


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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    I'd definitely be up for reading that.

    I'm also on board with the idea of it not being Vader's story. Never was. Lucas tried to make it that to make money. At least that's my pessimistic take on it.
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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Javen View Post
    Anyone ever read it? I read it quite awhile ago and then again recently. It is quite extensive and shoots down George's claims that it's always been Anakin/Vader's story which I agree and never believed anyway. It was Luke's story. It only changed when GL rewrote ESB and fused Vader and Father Skywalker together. Even thjough this is not really what the book is really about it just lays out the genesis and changes it all went through and how it all came about. Pretty good history book.
    I read it when it was freely available as a PDF. It's a good read it places, but I don't think the author shoots down much of anything and the early drafts are not good indicators of anything but the evolution of the story as Lucas wrote a ton of notes in his binder. Sure, Lucas didn't have everything planned from the start, but this guy isn't privy to Lucas's personal notes (heck, I remember that he even questioned the existence of Journal of the Whills until parts of it were published in The Making of Star Wars). My belief is that Lucas toyed with ideas of Vader's nature as early as during late pre-production/production phase of the original Star Wars. Also, the memories aren't perfect after thirty years. Lucas might actually believe that it was more or less planned from the start.

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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    Vader was one person and Luke's father was one person. It was the adventures of Luke. I don't really just base that on this book. I've never believed it was about Anakin/Vader no matter what GL states. He made them one person for ESB which was a grand idea. In Star Wars Vader wasn't really even the main villain, imo. Even in the next installments Vader still wans't. The Emperor was. This is neither bad or good. It's what worked.

    Also I never stated this author was some midn reader. He brings up great points but the wholoe thing really isn't about that GL was a liar. His whole point is that the story constantly evolved into what it became.


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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Master Magnus View Post
    I read it when it was freely available as a PDF.
    I think this is the book Rolla was really promoting some years back. Read at that point. Did have a lot of interesting stuff in it, though I recall not caring for the author's tone.

    Regardless of what the original ideas were, the series did become very much about Vader with ESB. I think too much gets made of "Lucas said this then and is saying this now." Who cares. So things changed over time.

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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Javen View Post
    Vader was one person and Luke's father was one person. It was the adventures of Luke. I don't really just base that on this book. I've never believed it was about Anakin/Vader no matter what GL states. He made them one person for ESB which was a grand idea.
    While you're absolutely right that Vader and Luke's father were two separate characters, it's pretty clear that as Vader's character evolved from having been insignificant to important for the story, Lucas began to toy with ideas for the character. Another very interesting thing is that Vader inherited some of Kane Starkiller's characteristics (the Jedi father of the protagonist Annikin [sic] Starkiller in the rough draft for Star Wars), namely that he was in part "mechanical" (with only his head and one of his arms being organic). I think McQuarrie's concept art of masked Vader could've sparked some ideas (at least it would've for me).

    In the published transcripts of the story conferences Lucas held with among others Leigh Brackett, Lucas was vague regarding Vader's nature though he said to the effect that Vader's interest in Luke was personal. Brackett's script wasn't used and in Lucas own second draft, Vader was firmly established as Luke's father though it stands to reason that his nature had been established by Lucas before he started on TESB.

    Quote Originally Posted by Javen
    In Star Wars Vader wasn't really even the main villain, imo. Even in the next installments Vader still wans't. The Emperor was. This is neither bad or good. It's what worked.
    That's absolutely true. Lucas said as much already in the aforementioned story conferences.

    Quote Originally Posted by Javen
    Also I never stated this author was some midn reader. He brings up great points but the wholoe thing really isn't about that GL was a liar. His whole point is that the story constantly evolved into what it became.
    Yes, he does bring up some good points, but many of his claims are unverifiable. He had no insight into LFL and he hasn't spoken with George Lucas or had access to his notes. This is evident as it contains errors (such as the one I mentioned earlier and the claim that George Lucas made up midichlorians for TPM while tape transcripts published in The Making of Star Wars shows that Lucas had come up with the concept as early as 1977. However, to his credit, he did acknowledge that in his later editions.).

    We will never learn the truth and my guess is that it's somewhere along the middle.

    Oh, another unofficial book I'd like to read is A Brief Guide to Star Wars. I saw it in the local bookstore's English-section and looked it up on the 'Net. Unfortunately, the remaining copy had been sold when I returned to buy it.

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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    I read a really awesome "warts and all" book called "Empire Building" about Star Wars that had a lot of similar stuff in it back in the 90s. I believe it was before the Special Editions.

    I hate to say this but I think George Lucas may be a bit of a pathological liar, and I think he really does believe the things he's made up to make himself sound smarter (for whatever reason he feels that's necessary).

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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    I've read "Empire building" and it was interesting. I have the pdf of "The secret history" but is in my to read pile.
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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    GL is somewhat of a liar especially when it comes to it being Vader's story. But why isn't he smart? If you are talking writing well he hates writing and has always said it was painful for him to do. He cares more about just writing a story than doing any kind of character development. He's just as smart as anyone can be he just loves to change things so much its become far beyond OCD.


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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    I don't believe GL is an outright liar (I believe that he wants to believe some things), but one thing he said in an interview a few years back to the effect that he had always planned for Han to shoot Greedo first but that it was flubbed in post-production did struck me as blatantly untrue (considering there were even dialogue written for Han as a follow-up to the shooting but that was trimmed or not filmed).

    EDIT: The interview was actually from last year (in the Hollywood Reporter) and this is what he said:

    "The controversy over who shot first, Greedo or Han Solo, in Episode IV, what I did was try to clean up the confusion, but obviously it upset people because they wanted Solo to be a cold-blooded killer, but he actually isnít. It had been done in all close-ups and it was confusing about who did what to whom. I put a little wider shot in there that made it clear that Greedo is the one who shot first, but everyone wanted to think that Han shot first, because they wanted to think that he actually just gunned him down."
    Source: Hollywood Reporter

    Oh yeah...

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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Master Magnus View Post
    I don't believe GL is an outright liar (I believe that he wants to believe some things), but one thing he said in an interview a few years back to the effect that he had always planned for Han to shoot Greedo first but that it was flubbed in post-production did struck me as blatantly untrue (considering there were even dialogue written for Han as a follow-up to the shooting but that was trimmed or not filmed).

    EDIT: The interview was actually from last year (in the Hollywood Reporter) and this is what he said:


    Source: Hollywood Reporter

    Oh yeah...
    He says all kinds of things that aren't true in order to revise history in his favor. I cracked open my hard-back novelization of the original trilogy that was released as one volume before work began on the prequels, and in the introduction he says he always envisioned the saga as the six-part story of Anakin and Luke Skywalker, which is not true. He says stuff like that all the time and has been for years. I've known pathological liars, and that's their thing - they make stuff up or revise history to make themselves sound better and they believe their own stories.

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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Javen View Post
    GL is somewhat of a liar especially when it comes to it being Vader's story. But why isn't he smart? If you are talking writing well he hates writing and has always said it was painful for him to do. He cares more about just writing a story than doing any kind of character development. He's just as smart as anyone can be he just loves to change things so much its become far beyond OCD.
    I never said he wasn't smart, I think he is tremendously intelligent and savvy. That's why I said "for whatever reason he feels it's necessary" to try to make himself sound smarter, because no one doubts his intelligence.

    I think he's a bit narcissistic (especially with all of the praise that's been heaped on him over the last 30+ years) and needs to believe he is infallible and has made no mistakes.

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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    Who gives a fuck that Lucas is a revisionist of his history, rather he believes it or just to shill his new product? Lucas is a human being. Too many people operate under the false belief that successful artists = moral human beings. Lucas has never slept with Thai child prostitutes or throw rocks at homeless hobos to know my knowledge.

    More than likely the reality falls far from pop psychology claims of nefarious manipulation of the public record. Star Wars is a brand, and the brand needs to appeal so children and other devotees can continually purchase the product. A statement that Star Wars is a preordained epic planned from the start sounds sexy. Look at J.K. Rowling scribbling quidditch matches on napkins while on welfare or Stephen King's near death precipitating the conclusion of The Dark Tower. Who knows?

    Secret History of Star Wars posits a divergent view on the official canon showned by LucasFilm. Interesting read, but nothing causing me to set my digital video discs on fire.

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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Ripley View Post
    Who gives a fuck that Lucas is a revisionist of his history, rather he believes it or just to shill his new product? Lucas is a human being. Too many people operate under the false belief that successful artists = moral human beings. Lucas has never slept with Thai child prostitutes or throw rocks at homeless hobos to know my knowledge.
    I'm not sure what your point is...?

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    Default Re: BOOK:The Secret History of Star Wars

    Quote Originally Posted by Ripley View Post
    Who gives a fuck that Lucas is a revisionist of his history, rather he believes it or just to shill his new product? Lucas is a human being. Too many people operate under the false belief that successful artists = moral human beings. Lucas has never slept with Thai child prostitutes or throw rocks at homeless hobos to know my knowledge.

    More than likely the reality falls far from pop psychology claims of nefarious manipulation of the public record. Star Wars is a brand, and the brand needs to appeal so children and other devotees can continually purchase the product. A statement that Star Wars is a preordained epic planned from the start sounds sexy. Look at J.K. Rowling scribbling quidditch matches on napkins while on welfare or Stephen King's near death precipitating the conclusion of The Dark Tower. Who knows?

    Secret History of Star Wars posits a divergent view on the official canon showned by LucasFilm. Interesting read, but nothing causing me to set my digital video discs on fire.
    So no one is allowed an opinion then? We all should just worship at the Lucas alter and never discuss anything at all and become monks with vows of silence then?

    If you read it then you would know that the book isn't really anything but a kind of history book. It's not putting him down really and that's not what it is about.

    But to answer your first question. I give a fuck because it gives me something to talk about.


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