Did you know that Boba Fett originally had a much larger role in the over all Star Wars universe? But something in the game plan changed that regulated him to the sidelines fairly quickly. There are countless stories about how iconic plot points in the original Star Wars trilogy changed over the years, like how Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) was originally named Luke Starkiller in early drafts of George Lucas' script, and Obi-Wan Kenobi even lived through his climactic duel with Darh Vader. But the evolving story of bounty hunter Boba Fett might be most interesting of all.
While the original trilogy was certainly a success, with the first Star Wars movie holding the record for the highest grossing movie ever for 20 years, until Titanic came around, interest in the franchise is easily at an all-time high, following the massive blockbuster hit Star Wars: The Force Awakens. In honor of Star Wars Day yesterday, LucasFilm's first "fan relations officer," Craig Miller shed some light on plans for the original trilogy, specifically Return of the Jedi, which are quite surprising.
Craig Miller became an early adviser in 1976, and later became LucasFilm's first "fan relations officer," who was responsible for creating buzz for the trilogy, decades before the Internet even existed. His job ranged from writing fake rumors that were leaked to the press, including one Starlog column from 1979, before the release of Empire Strikes Back. That movie featured the debut of the iconic bounty hunter Boba Fett, who was originally being set up to be the main villain in Return of the Jedi, and in George Lucas' proposed third trilogy. Here's what Craig Miller had to say in an interview with Inverse.
"Originally Boba Fett was set up in Empire as a character, and the third movie's plot was going to be more about Boba Fett rescuing Han Solo and all of that. Boba was gonna be the main villain... That was set up, why he was taking Han Solo away, why there was a thing with him in the Christmas special. When George decided not to make a third trilogy, he completely jettisoned that story line, which is why in the first ten minutes, Boba Fett gets bumped into and falls into the mouth of a giant monster. So he took what was planned for the third trilogy, which was the confrontation between Luke and Darth Vader, and the battle with the Emperor, and that got squished down from three movies to one movie. And that became the plot of Jedi."
After Return of the Jedi hit theaters, there had long been rumors of a second and third trilogy. Back in 2014, an old 1983 interview with Mark Hamill resurfaced, where he revealed that George Lucas approached him to come back and play an Obi-Wan type character, which George Lucas said would happen around 2011. Ironically enough, George Lucas ended up selling LucasFilm to Disney in the fall of 2012, when Star Wars: The Force Awakens was first announced. Here's what Craig Miller had to say about George Lucas' initial Star Wars plans.
"At first there was one film, and then George originally announced that it was one of 12, and there were going to be 12, and then that changed to, oh there was never 12, there was only 9, and he was going to make 9. And then during all of it, George kind of lost interest in continuing it. While we were working on The Empire Strikes Back, George decided he was going to complete the first film trilogy and that would be it. And I remember sitting in a mixing room with George, working on Empire, and he told me he was just going to make the third movie, which didn't have a title at that point, and then stop. He was going to retire from making big movies and make experimental movies. And that's why the whole plot of the third movie, what became Return of the Jedi, completely changed."
Of course George Lucas did eventually return to direct the Star Wars prequel trilogy, which fared well at the box office but weren't received terribly well by fans and critics alike. As for Boba Fett, it has long been rumored that the third Star Wars spinoff, rumored to hit theaters in 2020, will provide an origin story for this beloved bounty hunter, but that project doesn't even have a writer or director attached at this time. There are also presistent rumors that Boba will show up in this Christmas' Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, but he didn't appear in the first trailer. We'll continue to keep you posted on all things Star Wars, so stay tuned.