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May The Force Be With You

Back To Basics: Dark Horse Publishing The Original Star Wars Screenplay As A Comic Book

Not an April Fool’s joke, Dark Horse said so specifically. The comic publisher is readying a new series titled The Star Wars which follows George Lucas’ early Star Wars screenplay. We’ve got details and a full page of preview art from the series after the jump. 

Earlier today, Dark Horse Comics sent out a press release announcing J.W. Rinzler, executive editor at LucasBooks, and artist Mike Mayhew would be adapting a rough-draft original screenplay of Star Wars from Lucas.

Three years before his 1977 film, George Lucas put down on paper his first story set in a galaxy far, far away—a tale of fantastic adventures, daring escapes, “lazer swords,” romance, and monsters. A story of Jedi Annikin Starkiller and General Luke Skywalker, an alien named Han Solo, and evil Sith Knights. The screenplay was titled The Star Wars!

“I’m not sure where I first read about The Star Wars—it was years and years ago—but the idea of Luke Skywalker being an older Jedi General, and Han Solo being a six-foot-tall lizard, turned my Star Wars fan brain on its side,” said longtime Star Wars editor Randy Stradley. “I always assumed this would be one of those stories that would be ‘lost to history,’ so getting to work on bringing it to life is kinda like a dream come true.”

“While researching in the Lucasfilm Archives I’ve found many treasures—but one which truly astounded me was George’s rough draft for The Star Wars. His first complete imaginings were hallucinating to read—mind blowing,” said writer J.W. Rinzler. “While working with George on another book project, I once asked if we could adapt his rough draft. He was hesitant. Years later, with Dark Horse’s invaluable help, we showed him a few drawn and colored pages of what it might look like. He gave us the okay.”

“I thought I knew a lot about Star Wars, but I had no idea,” Mayhew tweeted. “We are been totally faithful to George’s script, which is incredibly action packed with complex characters we’ve never met before!”

The series will be eight issues long and you can get your hands on #1 this September. Here’s the full page of art:

Are you willing to accept a different kind of Star Wars?

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  • Christopher LaHaise

    I’m actually very, very interested in seeing this. I hope they sell it as a collection, too. Most likely, knowing Dark Horse. A shame they’re losing the franchise.

  • Jeff L. Crowder

    I would LOVE this… Much more than any of the prequel crap Lucas shoveled down our throats!

  • Anonymous

    This interest more then the sequel.

  • Paul Smokey D

    I can’t tell you enough how insanely more interested I am in this than any current continuation that is happening.

  • Joel Emmett

    Simply thrilled to hear about this.

  • Abhinav Jain

    Dark Horse losing the franchise has been nothing more than a rumour.

  • Anonymous

    Totally agreed. “Are you willing to accept a different kind of Star Wars?” – Considering what currently passes for actual Star Wars, it’s difficult for me to be MORE enthusiastic for a different kind.

  • Kris Loy

    Abhinav is correct. Neither Dark Horse, nor Disney has confirmed that Star Wars is leaving. And I mean the announcement of this pretty much seals the deal that it isn’t. Using simply logic, you can see that they state it starts in September, but runs 8 issues. Therefore, it will run until at least April 2014. Also Dark Horse usually has to go through other Star Wars publishers to talk about stuff like this. I imagine that this is an attempt by Dark Horse to show Disney that Star Wars is in the right hands, and there was probably a deal cut so that Disney gets a fair share of the profits from Dark Horse from now on.

  • Jill Pantozzi

    They still have the license, and it seems this was in the works for a while, but this doesn’t mean they aren’t loosing the franchise after their contract runs out, just that they can still publish something already set in motion.

  • Anonymous

    To my knowledge there’ve been multiple early versions of “Star Wars”. One version had Luke’s sister (before Leia) as a brave teenaged hero, and Luke as the timid tagalong brother. I’d be interested in seeing that one adapted.

  • Mr The Batman

    Most definitely interested!

  • Aaron

    This sounds great!

  • Alyson L

    What I see here looks pretty damned cool… I can’t wait!