Star Wars: What is Canon?
There have been a great number of arguments over what is official canon in the always popular Star Wars franchise ever since the prequels were released into theaters. Those dedicated fans who have been faithful to the franchise since its inception have stuck by the original films, citing them as the true history of the franchise. Many would agree that George Lucas’s vision should in fact be kept as the basis behind the Star Wars universe, no matter how expansive it might be.
However, there are those who have transcended the movie by reading the books, the comics, and the graphic novels, absorbing what many upon many authors and artists have added to the story. The prequels did a fairly reasonable job of explaining a number of questions that were presented in the original trilogy, but the schism thrust between fans who are loyal to the original trilogy and those who were awaiting a new spin on the Star Wars universe was made noticeable after “The Phantom Menace”.
From that point on the rift between fans only grew wider as the prequels continually changed the universe and answered more questions than had originally been asked. As the Star Wars universe continued to expand, the ideals and expectations of Lucas’ creation began to shift. The books that were written after the initial trilogy, masterfully written and detailing a story for the original characters that was compelling and even pleasing to the readers, became moot. Even a galaxy-wide invasion by a marauding alien species that could not be stopped by the vaunted and revived Jedi Order was scrapped when Lucas sold his creation to Disney. From that point on, the canon of Star Wars shifted for good.
While it can be said that the direction the franchise has taken is in fact quite interesting and engaging, it is also a very hard slap in the face to the literary fans of the story. Just imagine if Disney had picked up a series of books that came after the original trilogy, just to see what readers had become enamored of, they might have had a far easier time moving forward. Just imagine if the story in the books had been unveiled, such facts as these would have garnered far more films than have already been conceived. Here are just a few bits of information from the books:
1) Han and Lei married and had three children. Jaina, Jacen, and Anakin Solo all became powerful Jedi, and eventually would reshape the Order.
2) Luke Skywalker married an assassin, Mara Jade, formerly the Hand of the Emperor. They had a son named Ben Skywalker.
3) Chewbacca died saving Anakin Solo’s life. He was crushed, along with the planet he was on, by a falling moon.
4) The entire Yuuzhan Vong invasion could have spanned another trilogy if not more, as these fierce, warrior-aliens were more than adept at destroying planets. They could even fight the Jedi to a standstill.
5) The Jedi Order is renewed under Jedi Grandmaster Luke Skywalker, and includes many talented Jedi of all species.