Before George Lucas sold Lucasfilm to The Walt Disney Company for billions of dollars, the creator of Star Wars was slowly developing what would have been a sequel trilogy to follow the events of Return of the Jedi. However, once Lucasfilm came under the Disney banner, they chose not to move forward with any of the ideas he put forth, and instead The Force Awakens began the new story arc for the Star Wars saga, albeit with some elements borrowed from George Lucas’ original plans.
For fans who are still wondering what a George Lucas Star Wars sequel trilogy would have looked like, we now have some insight into what the filmmaker had planned. Speaking with James Cameron as part of a companion book for the AMC series James Cameron’s Story of Science Fiction, George Lucas offered up some details on where he intended to take the Star Wars saga next. However, unless you were a fan of the introduction of midi-chlorians in the Star Wars prequels, you’ll probably be disappointed.
While addressing the creation of mythology, ecosystem and religion to flesh out a cinematic world, George Lucas teased part of his plan for the Star Wars sequel trilogy he never got to make:
“[The next three Star Wars films] were going to get into a microbiotic world. But there’s this world of creatures that operate different than we do. I call them the Whills. And the Whills are the ones who actually control the universe. They feed off the Force.”
For those who don’t know, the idea of the Whills is something George Lucas had always intended to be a larger part of Star Wars. Initially, Star Wars was meant to be a story that was told as if it was contained in a collection of stories called The Journal of the Whills. At one point, that was even the working title for Star Wars (you can find out more about that over here). So in George Lucas’ mind, the stories of Star Wars have always been tales relayed to us by these creatures called the Whills. Lucas continued in the book:
“Back in the day, I used to say ultimately what this means is we were just cars, vehicles, for the Whills to travel around in…We’re vessels for them. And the conduit is the midi-chlorians. The midi-chlorians are the ones that communicate with the Whills. The Whills, in a general sense, they are the Force.”
This sounds like the kind of detail that would be fascinating in some kind of epic novel series, but would it have been the right direction for the Star Wars universe? This almost feels like a direction similar to what Ridley Scott did with Prometheus and Alien: Covenant (for better or worse). He’s attempting to explain the origins and purpose of the sci-fi world he created by giving the universe its own creation myth.
Honestly, that doesn’t sound all that compelling. Giving the events trajectory of the Star Wars saga over to the Whills as something they control through midi-chlorians and the Force doesn’t seem to add much significance to the proceedings. As it stands, the Force being something more of a spiritual plane where a being can get in touch with the living world around them and learn to manipulate it and become one with it is much more in tune with the mysticism established in the original trilogy. Adding the idea of microbiology and these creatures we don’t understand or know anything about just feels like one step too far.
For Lucas’ part, it sounds like he laments not being able to finish his plan for Star Wars:
“All the way back to – with the Force and the Jedi and everything – the whole concept of how things happen was laid out completely from [the beginning] to the end. But I never got to finish. I never got to tell people about it. If I held onto the company, I could have done it, and then it would have been done. Of course, a lot of the fans would have hated it, just like they did Phantom Menace and everything, but at least the whole story from beginning to end would be told.”
For all the fans out there who have been calling on Disney to bring George Lucas in to “fix” Star Wars after The Last Jedi took us in a direction that left some fans disappointed, it doesn’t sound like the filmmaker would have done much to ease their pain.
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