The “mind-blowing” Star Wars TV show you’ll never get to see

Star Wars: Underworld could've been incredible.

Carrie Fisher as Star Wars legend Princess Leia in Star Wars
Gold bikini Princess Leia Image Picture Lucasfilm

You may not know it, but Star Wars almost became a TV series.

After releasing final prequel Revenge of the Sith in 2005, George Lucas began developing a small screen show called Star Wars: Underworld.

Emboldened by the success of the noughties reboot of Battlestar Galactica, Lucas put together a writing team including Battlestar’s Ronald D Moore and Life on Mars creator Matthew Graham to map out a sprawling storyline to bridge the gap between Sith and A New Hope.

More than 50 scripts were written and tonnes of artwork produced, but sky-high budget projections meant that it had to be axed in 2010. When Lucasfilm sold to Disney two years later the project was iced faster than Han Solo in carbonite.

Little has been revealed about Star Wars: Underworld – that is until now.

Star Wars Emperor Palpatine
Dark Side Star Wars' intergalactic maniac Emperor Palpatine. Image Picture Lucasfilm

God of War video game director Cory Barlog told Venture Beat that during a stint working for Lucas he saw scripts for Underworld, and walked away with his mind blown.

“It was the most mind-blowing thing I’d ever experienced.”

“When I was working at Lucas, I was allowed to go up to the ranch and read the scripts for the [live-action Star Wars] TV show,” he said.

“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 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.”

So there you have it.

The lost Star Wars TV show would’ve turned back the clock to uncover just what turned Palpatine from an idealistic politician into an intergalactic d*ck head.

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Loaded digital media manager Simon Reynolds has written about film and entertainment for various leading websites since 2008. Follow Simon at @simonreyn

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