Guillermo del Toro‘s Jabba the Hutt?
Yes, it could have happened.
The filmmaker confirmed during a Q&A presented by Collider that he was at one time working on a Star Wars movie that would center on the notorious crime lord, who lived on the planet Tatooine (where Luke Skywalker was raised, and his father before him). Del Toro was working on the project with screenwriter David S. Goyer, who first teased the news last month on the Happy, Sad, Confused podcast.
“There was just a lot of behind [the scenes] stuff going on at Lucasfilm at the time,” Goyer said on the podcast. “But it’s a cool script.”
In response, Del Toro tweeted at the time: “True. Can’t say much. Maybe two letters ‘J’ and ‘BB’ is that three letters?”
Now, Del Toro has confirmed that the project did, in fact, revolve around Jabba.
“We had the rise and fall of Jabba the Hutt, so I was super happy,” he said during the recent Collider event. “We were doing a lot of stuff, and then it’s not my property, it’s not my money, and then it’s one of those 30 screenplays that goes away. Sometimes I’m bitter, sometimes I’m not. I always turn to my team and say, ‘Good practice, guys. Good practice. We designed a great world. We designed great stuff. We learned.’”
But, alas, it wasn’t meant to be. Lucasfilm didn’t move forward with the project. Del Toro, though, has no hard feelings.
“You can never be ungrateful with life,” he said. “Whatever life sends you, there’s something to be learned from it. So, you know, I trust the universe, I do. When something doesn’t happen, I go, ‘Why?’ I try to have a dialogue with myself. ‘Why didn’t it happen?’ And the more you swim upstream with the universe, the less you’re gonna realize where you’re going.”
While it’s unclear exactly how long ago Del Toro and Goyer were working on the project, not getting a chance to direct a Star Wars movie obviously hasn’t hindered Del Toro’s career: He’s won three Oscars, two for The Shape of Water (best picture and best director) and one for Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio (best animated feature). For his part, Goyer has been involved with numerous superhero films, including The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises, Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice along with Terminator: Dark Fate.
Jabba, meanwhile, has appeared in several Star Wars movies and on TV. He was first introduced in 1983’s Star Wars: Episode VI — Return of the Jedi. He also was later added to Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope when the film was rereleased for its 20th anniversary in 1997, via a previously unfinished scene. The character appeared again in 1999’s Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace.
Jabba also is a key part of the storyline for the animated film Star Wars: The Clone Wars and appears in several episodes of the TV series that followed.
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