Hardcore Star Wars fans will know that A New Hope went through many early drafts before it hit the big screen. George Lucas began writing in 1973, aiming to combine all the books, films, and comics he enjoyed as a child into one movie. By 1975 he had a script called ‘Adventures of the Starkiller, Episode One: The Star Wars‘, and famed concept artist Ralph McQuarrie was figuring out how it would look.
Many of McQuarrie’s designs ended up in the movie, albeit modified in minor ways. He can claim credit for various spacecraft, the look of lightsabers, the Stormtroopers, and—most famously—Darth Vader’s intimidating armor.
Now rumors are that Disney and Lucasfilm are working on an animated movie based on these early drafts, with the visual style emulating McQuarrie’s art. The story comes from That Hashtag Show, which says that “multiple sources” have told them the project is underway, with a team of writers currently deciding how this alternate Original Trilogy will work.
If they follow Lucas’ 1975 draft we’ll see the adventures of ‘Aquillian Ranger’ and Jedi Deak Starkiller, who is captured and needs to be rescued by his younger brother Luke. Many of the familiar A New Hope building blocks like Darth Vader, Han Solo, C-3PO, and R2D2 are present, though in slightly different forms.
If this story is confirmed, and they capture McQuarrie’s art in animation, it should be an absolutely beautiful set of movies. Lucasfilm has already demonstrated with Visions that they’re happy to explore non-canon stories, so fingers crossed this rumor pans out.
Word is this reimagining of Star Wars is penciled in for 2023, so watch this space.