Palpatine’s Love Life In Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker Was George Lucas’ Idea


The revelation that Rey was Palpatine’s granddaughter in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker was surprising for many reasons. For one, it suggested that the Emperor, the most evil being in the galaxy known for his gruesome appearance, had actually had a love life. You might wonder what drove J.J. Abrams and writer Chris Terrio to come up with that idea, but in actual fact, it wasn’t them who came up with it. George Lucas did.

Test footage recently surfaced online for the abandoned Star Wars: Underworld TV series, which was a big pet project of Lucas’ that he developed for years before Disney’s purchase of Lucasfilm. The sprawling show would have taken place prior to the Original Trilogy, following various characters from the movies. One of these was Palpatine himself, whose storyline would’ve seen him fall in love with a woman and have his heart broken.

God of War creator Cory Barlog spilled the beans on this a while back. Upon visiting Skywalker Ranch several years ago, he got to read a few of the unmade scripts for Underworld. And he was surprised by how much he cared about the Emperor.

“I cared about the Emperor. They made the Emperor a sympathetic figure who was wronged by this f****** heartless woman. She’s this hardcore gangster, and she just totally destroyed him as a person. I almost cried while reading this. This is the Emperor, the lightning out of the fingers Emperor.”

Though Underworld itself appears to be dead for good, some of its concepts have ended up being reutilized elsewhere. The show would’ve featured a younger Han Solo embarking on the Kessel Run, for example, which we later saw in Solo. Likewise, Abrams and Terrio picked up this Palpatine thread and unravelled it further: if Palpatine had a partner, then maybe he had a kid, too. And maybe his kid had a kid, etc.

Presumably, in time we’ll get comics, novels and more filling in this massive gap in Palpatine’s life, so it’ll be interesting to see whether Underworld‘s tragic, sympathetic portrayal of the Emperor will be brought into canon. Either way, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker has already adapted one of Lucas’ more bizarre ideas to the screen.

Source: ScreenRant