Strange Details of Failed Star Wars TV Show Emerge

/ 4 years ago

star wars emperor

Before George Lucas sold his film and game production companies – Lucasfilm and Lucasarts, respectively – it was well-known that a Star Wars TV show was in the works. Called Star Wars Underworld, the show was intended to take place between Episodes III and IV of Star Wars, though little was known about its potential content, and it was delayed for budgetary issues even before the buy-out.

Now that the Star Wars universe is owned by Disney, Underworld is effectively dead. One man who worked on it, though, has teased a particularly strange conceit of the canned show: Emperor Palpatine, über-villain of the series, was to be turned into a sympathetic character. Y’know, the evil guy with the creepy monster face:

In an interview with VentureBeat, Cory Barlog, director of the new God of War game, discussed how the latest entry will work to soften series protagonist Kratos. In that context, Barlog revealed that, when he worked at Lucasarts, he was allowed to read some of the scripts for Star Wars Underworld, and was inspired by their handling of the Emperor.

Barlog said:

“Probably the really small beginnings of this idea, the germination of this — when I was working at Lucas, I was allowed to go up to the ranch and read the scripts for the TV show. It was the most mind-blowing thing I’d ever experienced. I cared about the Emperor. They made the Emperor a sympathetic figure who was wronged by this fucking 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. That’s something magical. The writers who worked on that, guys from The Shield and 24, these were excellent writers.”

It sounds like Underworld had the potential to be a more nuanced and mature entry in the Star Wars canon than the risible prequels were. Since the show hasn’t been officially cancelled by Disney, would you be excited to see Star Wars Underworld hit the small screen?

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