When images of the female Mandalorian came out of New York Toy Fair, revealed later as Sabine, there was plenty of speculation about who she might be. I was more focused on what her role could suggest happened to Mandalore following the Darth Maul story arc in season five of The Clone Wars.
The fallout of Darth Maul’s hostile takeover of planet Mandalore has consumed most of my thoughts on the show’s last season. When we left, the planet was in Civil War. Bo-Katan’s splinter group, the Nite Owls, was in heated battle to regain control from Maul’s Shadow Collective, including Death Watch.
Although the pacifistic government was overthrown, the planet’s neutral siding would mean there’d be no intervention by the Jedi or the Republic. If the Nite Owls were defeated, this would mean the planet would remain controlled by organized crime – right? It may not be that clean cut.
While the audience is aware Darth Maul was usurped by Sidious, nobody else survived the encounter that could enlighten either side of the conflict. Of course, Sidious wouldn’t advertise his victory; in fact, he’d use it to his advantage – the natural puppet master that he is. If he left Maul on the planet, but under his thumb, he could now influence the happenings of a planet previously outside his influence.
Through controlling the figure head of Mandalore, it would provide an emerging Empire with two advantages. The first, it neutralizes one of the most threatening warrior classes; and second, it allows the existence of Imperial outposts with no resistance when the Empire expands.
Of course, there would be Nite Owl members who survive the clash and either continue to fight, or go underground. Either way, their children would be raised to distrust and hate the Empire that controls their planet – sending their planet into depression as its resources and industry is taken over and used to pump out weapons and items for Imperial forces.
Sabine’s bucket is very similar to the design of the Nite Owls, which leads me to speculate she could be an offspring of one of the members. Also, her artistic tendencies could be a product of being a youth during the pacifistic regime, where arts could have been pushed more over the older roots of being warriors.
This past December, my brother and I were Christmas shopping when we strolled past the video game section at Walmart. We had just left the toy aisle, but when we came upon a shelf with pegs filled with Disney Infinity and Skylanders products – he asked why these action figures weren’t kept with the others in the toy aisle.
I tried my best to explain to him that the figures he was admiring – ranging from Pixar favorites to Captain Hook – were more than action figures, but actually components to a video game. While I’ve never played either platforms, I understand the basics behind it and told him users purchase figures of the characters they wish to play in the game.
It’s a brilliant evolution in toys and a concept I believe we’ll see more in coming years, perhaps the most promising strategy to breathe new life into action figure sales. I imagine this concept was the inspiration behind Telepods – although stripped down and much less sophisticated, tech wise.
While Skylanders was the first to really corner this marriage between video games and toys, Disney launched Infinity August of last year and sold more than three million copies of its toys and video game products. That’s a huge success and encouraged them to expand the line.
Disney officials announced they’re working on Disney Infinity 2, which will expand the character roster to include Marvel and Star Wars. As information comes forward in coming months, I have to imagine Boba Fett is high up on the list of characters to roll out.
Last August, Disney asked fans to vote for what characters they want to be included in the game via a hashtag campaign. I wouldn’t be surprised if they do a similar prompt during development of the sequel – and when this happens, you can bet we’ll be pushing to get Boba Fett well represented and push to have him a part of the expansion.
We’re less than a month into the New Year and a number of Boba Fett products have already hit the market – and have sold out.
Unless you’re lucky enough to make it out to Disney World or Disneyland this year, you can still order these exclusive Star Wars emblem pins at Disneystore.com. The set includes seven pins including symbols for the Jedi, Rebel Alliance, Confederacy of Independent Systems, Galactic Senate, Galactic Empire, Open Circle Fleet and the Mandalorian icon of the Mythosaur. Each pin is about 1.5 inches in height and has glitter accents. The online price is $34.95.
Japan-based F-TOYS is accepting pre-orders for its seven piece Star Wars vehicles series, which includes 1:350 scale models of the AT-AT, Sandcrawler, Imperial Shuttle and Slave I in Jango Fett’s colors. It also includes a 1:144 scale B-Wing Fighter. Items are scheduled to ship out in March and the online price is about $47.66 USD.
Hasbro’s new wave of Saga Legends action figures is now available, but the Boba Fett is already out of stock – no surprise there. The Boba Fett figure began popping up overseas earlier this summer, but they should start being seen in the states now – although I’ve yet to see any of the new figures in any of my local stores. The Boba Fett action figure has 5-points of articulation, but is beautifully sculpted from what I see online. The Jango Fett Mission Series figure was a favorite last year, and I expect this sculpt to be just as impressive in person.
United Kingdom’s Debenhams came out with a Boba Fett onesie as an online exclusive, which quickly sold out. The one-piece jumpsuit is made from 65 percent polyester and 35 percent cotton, but before you kick yourself for missing this one – it also featured a warning that the material is very flammable – therefore, keep away from fire. That’s not really something I’d want to deal with.
About 16,000 participated in an online poll at IGN.com on who they most want to see return in Episode VII. The results were a near landslide, with Boba Fett receiving nearly a quarter of the votes. Twenty-three percent of the people polled voted for Boba Fett.
The best way to illustrate the scale of these results, the runner up was Darth Maul with 12 percent and Chewbacca with 11 percent. IGN.com included 20 characters in the poll, excluding “obvious” choices like Luke Skywalker, Han Solo and Darth Vader.
Earlier this year, StarWars.com came up with similar results during their March Madness Character Tournament. If you take the same characters out, that IGN omitted, and you’d be left also with Boba Fett as the top choice – note, he did make the semi-finals during that tourney.
While I was excited to learn these results, the result articles made my teeth grind – the writer commenting that Boba Fett is dead, a fact we all know is false. Even if you’re only considering G-Level canon, you cannot conclude Boba died.
A rule of thumb for genre television and movies has always been – if you don’t see a body, you can’t know 100 percent they’re fate is sealed. That being said, this story has been making the rounds and I must imagine has come to the attention of Lucasfilm officials.
Let’s continue to cross our fingers that we’ll see the “resurrection” of Boba Fett in the sequel trilogy.
We’re in high anticipation for the Star Wars Rebels presentation coming next month to the New York Comic Con, but earlier this month we got one of our first big pieces of casting rumors – word spread that actors David Oyelowo, Freddie Prinze Jr, Vanessa Marshall, Taylor Gray and Steve Blum were being brought on to voice characters.
This rumor holds some weight in my opinion, because a few of these performers have past histories with Star Wars properties. Some have even commented about it since the rumor hit the Internet.
In an interview with RebelForce Radio a few weeks ago, voice actor Tom Kane, best known for his role as Yoda in The Clone Wars, disclosed that he landed the job due to previously working with Lucasfilm, voicing some early Star Wars games. So it’s no surprise two of these individuals come from this arena.
Of the names mentioned, Steve Blum has the longest relationship with Star Wars projects – having provided voices for nearly a dozen Star Wars video games – including such recent titles as The Old Republic, The Force Unleashed II, and games as old as 1996’s X-Wing vs. TIE Fighters.
Vanessa Marshall is also part of the Star Wars family, having voiced characters in The Old Republic, Knights of the Old Republic and Jedi Knights II – like Blum, she has been in the folds for more than a decade. Both of them also have working relationships with producer Greg Weisman.
Most of the roles Blum played has been Imperial troopers, whether AT-ST drivers, Infantry, or Imperial officers. Marshall has played Force users, whether Sith or Jedi. Could these hint at what parts they’ll play in the show?
Some of the other actors are a little harder to tie to the project. This is Taylor Gray’s first major voice work job, previously best known for a Nickelodeon show, Bucket and Skinner’s Epic Adventures.
However, odds are strong he landed a lead role – and it’s a Jedi – source? – Well, an article from Hollywood Reporter, announcing Gray’s been cast in a lead role was posted as news on Gray’s official website. Gray also tweeted the following four days ago, dropping a bomb: “Cool article that came out today. Always wanted to be a Jedi!”
David Oyelowo is one of the most exciting names attached to this rumor, because earlier this month it was reported he may be the first actor casted for Episode VII and that he’d also play a role in Rebels that would lead way to the film performance. The exciting part of this rumor is Simon Kinsberg is working with Rebel producers to create continuity between the two projects.
However, this is no surprise, Weisman has mentioned on Twitter, on multiple occasions, he’s talked story with Kinsberg. Like most actors who’ve been onscreen for a while, he’s been quiet.
Hollywood Reporter also broke that Freddie Prinze Jr was being sought to voice a role. Prinze has done voice work before, in video games like Mass Effects and television shows like Kim Possible and Robot Chicken.
It’s no surprise that so far evidence points to Jedi being around in Rebels. The premise of the show, as stated by Lucasfilm, is the Empire hunting down the remains of the Jedi Order. That would be a little hard to do – with no Jedi characters.
Last April, a rumor followed the news of the LucasArts shut down, concerning the much anticipated game, 1313. It was reported by insiders multiple changes during development led to Boba Fett being the central figure of the game.
This led to plenty of conversation on forums and social media platforms. Some fans casted doubt on these rumors, citing early concepts shown at E3. Other fans totally believed the rumors and voiced disappointment – nonetheless, when IGN.com shots of the game – confirming Boba Fett’s role – a delayed rage finally showed its face on the Internet.
IGN received a look at a 15 minute demo of 1313, which they report would have debuted at this year’s E3. The footage fully confirmed the rumors heard earlier this year. According to IGN, the game followed a young Boba Fett, working for Jabba the Hutt. Other bounty hunters were featured and they worked for other crime bosses. The game traced Boba Fett’s evolution from the prequels to the Original Trilogy.
IGN’s source also revealed the game would tie into Star Wars Underworld, a live-action television show that never got off the ground. I’m very disappointed this game was canceled, although I’m surprised fans didn’t voice their anger about its plug being pulled until now – other than now they can see actual screen grabs – but I’ve seen the Internet go running with much more vague rumors in the past.
Although this game is canceled, I have faith it will be show up as another project in the future. While the franchise now belongs to Disney, I don’t think the good people at Lucasfilm will suddenly abandon their trait of never throwing anything out. Kathleen Kennedy and other officials studied under George Lucas, and he was the biggest proponent of archiving concepts and finding the right time to reintroduce them in new ways.
I’ve worked in journalism for about eight years. One disappointing trend I’ve noticed is people seldom read an entire news piece before drawing their conclusions – society is being conditioned to ignoring anything longer than a Twitter post. I sometimes want to remind people to read more than the headline, there’s more words under the byline.
Last week the Internet swarmed with news that Boba Fett and Han Solo spin-offs were confirmed by Disney’s Bob Iger and they’d be origin stories. As our friends at BobaFett.com pointed out, while Disney confirmed last February they were developing two spin-off movies, he did not actually mention any specific premises or characters – only that there indeed were films on the horizon, and they’d be written by Star Wars veterans Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg.
The aside that Boba Fett, Han Solo and Yoda were characters being tossed around were only rumors – not sourced, vetted or officially confirmed. The website NukeTheFridge.com reported the Boba Fett spin-off being confirmed by citing a story from Movieweb.com.
According to Movieweb, Disney CFO Jay Rasulo announced the spin-off films would be origin stories during an entertainment conference in Beverly Hills. However, with no direct quotes provided, I have skeptical whether the report from this even was a case of misunderstanding or taking what Rasulo said out of context.
BobaFett.com shared this Twitter post from official Star Wars writer Bryan Young: “People need to learn how to properly source, provide links, and learn the definition of ‘confirmed.’”
Lucasfilm and Disney have had ample opportunity to make announcements regarding upcoming films – ranging from San Diego Comic Con to Celebration Europe and more. An announcement of this weight would be made with greater fanfare and through wider channels than a convention in Beverly Hills to a select inner circle. Unless, Rasulo spoke out of turn. I find that unlikely for someone in his position and for such a major company.
This is a good lesson in critical thinking, especially when it comes to rumors. Development is still underway for not only Episode VII, but also for Star Wars Rebels. While a general story for the first season of Rebels has been outlined, Star Wars officials have said writing is still underway. The biggest red flag about the “confirmation” of the spin-offs, is that origin stories would directly conflict with the timeline being fleshed out in Rebels.
Disney is a smart company and would not write itself into a corner, one of the main reasons it will not comment on whether or not the Big Three will appear in Episode VII. Therefore, it’s highly unlikely they would commit the spin-offs to a timeline that is would create continuity dilemmas in the official canon.
Over the last couple months we’ve posted a number of speculative stories about how Boba Fett could be reintroduced in Star Wars Rebels, along with numerous other pieces on how writers could approach the show. As we launch our #BringBackBoba Campaign Challenge, we are now asking you all to chime in for our first prompt.
The first campaign challenge is for fans to use the hashtag, #BringBackBoba, on a social networking platform, with an explanation as to why you’d personally like to see Boba Fett return to Star Wars Rebels. Whether it’s on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or another site – we invite you to participate, hopefully catching the attention of the “powers-that-be” over at Lucasfilm and Disney.
Also, join the ongoing conversations over at the #BringBackBoba Campaign page on Facebook. Don’t forget to “Like” us and don’t hesitate to post on our wall.
Since last year’s announcement of the sequel trilogy, many fans have debated whether the Expanded Universe would be discarded to allow new continuity. The relationship between G-Level and T-Level canon has always been blurry, but EU characters crossing over isn’t unprecedented.
The most recent example of EU canon being carried over was the inclusion of The Black Sun during the Darth Maul arc in The Clone Wars final season. Lucasfilm officials have tried to not step on the toes of expanded stories and characters, but prior to Disney’s acquisition, there was no major conflicts of interest that would jeopardize both venues working in harmony.
Most likely, Disney will not want to be restricted in creating original stories. The question arises, will the Expanded Universe be discarded, will it become a separate universe or some type of compromise? With Star Wars Rebels debuting next year, we’ll soon get that answer – and to examine this issue, we can hone in on one particular Expanded Universe story that involves Boba Fett.
Dark Horse’s popular comic book, Agent of the Empire: Hard Targets, takes place about 3 years before the Battle of Yavin in Episode IV. This is the era Rebels will take place in, although the exact date has not yet been announced, and could happen years earlier than this, but still within the same decade.
Hard Targets also dealt with similar issues as the Rebels premise puts forth – powerful families, cunning underdogs and other individuals looking to shape a rising empire. Obviously, they won’t reproduce the exact storylines from Hard Targets, but unless EU in entirety is tossed, this comic could hint at some elements we might see in Rebels.
The biggest prospective are Imperial Agents, like Johan Cross – side note, with the popularity of this book, could they officially canonize Cross as a new character in the series? Either way, with rumblings of a rebellion, we could see spies as a major role, like Clone Troopers were in the prequel era and Stormtroopers were in the Original Trilogy.
Hard Targets also illustrated the affects of power hungry families of means, families with names like Dooku. The front line is no longer on the ground, but behind closed doors. To ensure the right families gain power, the Empire uses bounty hunters as tools – in terms of assassinations or kidnappings. This is how characters like Cad Bane, Aurra Sing and others could be utilized in Rebels.
This also brings us to Boba Fett – a favorite used by the Empire. But this also brings us to the point where conflicts arise within continuity. Hard Targets establishes that Boba Fett, by 3 BBY, has been used regularly by the Empire. It’s alluded that he’s worked missions with Cross in the past, and we also see him recruited by Darth Vader in The Force Unleashed II, a video game/comic book also taking place in the time range of Rebels.
In Hard Targets, Boba Fett fits what we see not too far after in the original films. To not disrupt canon established in the Expanded Universe, then Star Wars Rebels must hit certain markers to match up with what we see later, especially if the show takes place closer to A New Hope than Episode III.
Boba Fett needs to have settled affairs with Hondo Ohnaka and retrieve Slave I. He’s got to be wearing his classic Mandalorian armor. Have produced a working relationship with the Empire and hooked up with Jabba the Hutt, as we see him as an escort in the Special Edition.
Lucasfilm should want to connect each era with few loose ends, at least in major character development aspects. Especially if the EU is erased, I should think they’d not want to leave popular characters like Boba Fett, a major moneymaker for the franchise, in the wind. It’s just bad storytelling to have a character like Boba Fett last seen in The Clone Wars with “starter set” armor, his flagship hidden in a pirate’s lair and no reputation of his own – to just show up years later with all those things with no explanation as to why.
They need to either provide that string of character development in Rebels or embrace the Expanded Universe to explain the happenings. Of course, they could simply reboot the Expanded Universe, but that would just tie their hands with future films just as equally as keeping the current comics and novels in the canon.
Mandalore had fallen into schism the last we visited it in The Clone Wars, and its leadership virtually dismantled. The premise of Disney’s new animated series deals with the rise of the rebellion, so is there room for a return to Mandalore?
Through the Expanded Universe we learn the Empire catches Mandalore in its crosshairs, due to an interest in its natural resources. In addition to harvesting the planet’s Mandalorian Iron, the Empire also see’s the planet as a convenient outpost to the expansion of its power. What other reason would they set base on a planet in the Outer Rim?
Whether or not this concept will be explored in Star Wars Rebels, perhaps in later seasons, there’s another reason we may return to Mandalore. The generation that grew up with The Clone Wars has become endeared to the clones.
The clone troopers are beloved, and would Disney simply discard these characters completely? I doubt this, especially since Dave Filoni is personally attached to these characters, and he would know some continuity in characters is essential to keeping audiences watching each episode.
The problem then becomes, how do you include clones – who are aging aggressively, and according to present canon, are not around in the era right before Episode IV. The answer could come from what we read in Expanded Universe novels, like the Republic Commando books by Karen Traviss.
In Traviss’ novels we learn that Mandalore becomes a sanctuary for clones, especially those under the command of Skirata – a Mandalorian who assisted Jango Fett in the training of early clones. Of course, there’s no guarantee that they’d introduce characters like Fenn Shysa, Spar, Skirata, etc. But, they could carry over popular troopers from The Clone Wars and put them on Mandalore.
Mandalore could be the only safe place for former clone troopers, and the story could still fit within the stories premise. Are we assuming that in the title “Rebels,” the show is only referring to the Rebel Alliance?
Wouldn’t a faction of ex-clone troopers, discarded by their government, dealing with betraying their Jedi commanders, who are fighting against the occupation of their adoptive planet, Mandalore, be considered rebels?
Would you like to see clones featured in Star Wars Rebels? If so, in what capacity? Share your thoughts by clicking through to our #BringBackBoba Campaign page on Facebook.