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Ji'dai
04-16-2005, 03:52 PM
Just how long ago was "a long time ago?" Millennia? Aeons?

I read somewhere a long time ago that the events in Star Wars are based on the passive observations of C-3PO and R2-D2, who just happened to be there doing the jobs they do while galactic events unfolded around them. The stories we know from this time period are really historical accounts recorded by these two droids.

Based on that idea, I thought a long time ago that R2 and 3PO had been built and were in service for years prior to the Clone Wars. So the fall of the Old Republic, the tragic tale of its Jedi Knight protectors, the story of the Skywalker family, and the rise and fall of the Empire were taken from the memory banks of R2 and 3PO at the time of or after their eventual deactivation.

Alas, we learned, not such a long time ago, that Anakin Skywalker constructed the protocol droid C-3PO for his mother Shmi. And R2-D2 was just another anonymous astromech in the service of a peaceful monarch on an outlying world. So much for the romanticized view of R2 and 3PO plying the galaxy together for a millennia.

I think it would have been neat had Lucas begun Episode I with a prologue that the sheds light on the time frame of "a long time ago," or at least the sources of the historical events we bear witness on screen. I’ve never considered Star Wars to be even remotely connected with Earth, unless the films were set eons in our own future, long after humans could be found throughout the galaxy and not confined to just one planet. Of course, "in a galaxy far, far away" precludes any Earth connection to the events of Star Wars anyway.

A possible prologue to Episode I could have been set in the "present day" at an archaeological dig on some desolate planet. At the site, two rusted-out husks that we barely recognize as R2 & 3PO are unearthed. The two ancient droids are carefully recovered and removed to a field laboratory. A dusty, scruffy, bearded academic in fedora and leather jacket carefully reactivates them in an attempt to access their memory banks. Eureka! Although much of the data is corrupted or lost, enough information can be retrieved to reconstruct this ancient period of a long time ago.

Rocketboy
04-16-2005, 05:35 PM
The "A Long Time Ago..." thing was only to give the saga a fairy tale type of feel.
There has never been (or ever will, I assume) an answer to when the films take place.

Ji'dai
04-16-2005, 09:35 PM
Well yeah, I realize "a long time ago" is the modern equivalent to "once upon a time," but have you never speculated on just exactly when a long time ago really was? :D

Slicker
04-16-2005, 09:45 PM
I think I heard somewhere that "Along time ago" takes place millions of years before our present time. Or at least something to that effect.

Kidhuman
04-16-2005, 11:57 PM
Its in the past, let it be...

eshulmire
04-17-2005, 04:19 AM
I think it would be before Christ .Wait no Jesus is a lone Jedi from another galaxy. yes master Jesus of the Jedi order came to earth looking to find force sensitive children to steal and make them Jedi's. :D

Turambar
04-17-2005, 01:56 PM
[QUOTE=Ji'dai]Just how long ago was "a long time ago?" Millennia? Aeons?

I read somewhere a long time ago that the events in Star Wars are based on the passive observations of C-3PO and R2-D2, who just happened to be there doing the jobs they do while galactic events unfolded around them. The stories we know from this time period are really historical accounts recorded by these two droids.

Based on that idea, I thought a long time ago that R2 and 3PO had been built and were in service for years prior to the Clone Wars. So the fall of the Old Republic, the tragic tale of its Jedi Knight protectors, the story of the Skywalker family, and the rise and fall of the Empire were taken from the memory banks of R2 and 3PO at the time of or after their eventual deactivation.
QUOTE]

Yeah, the droids were supposed to be like the passive narrators of the saga. Another alteration of the story we see in the prequels. Another reason the prequels never felt right. It really would have been neat if they'd stuck to that. At least don't make 3PO the work of Anakin! Although unrelated, one burning question I've always had is when exactly does 3PO learn all these millions of forms of communication. He is built out of junk by a 7 year old and never showcases any functionality at all throughout episodes I or II. Instead of being a completely worthless prop shoehorned in to remind us that it is a star wars movie. It would have been neat to see the droid pair serve some function for diplomats (perhaps the Organa family) of the republic. I figured 3PO's translating skills would have really been vert helpful somewhere in the senate.

Imperial Monarche
04-17-2005, 02:18 PM
Yeah, the droids were supposed to be like the passive narrators of the saga. Another alteration of the story we see in the prequels. Another reason the prequels never felt right. It really would have been neat if they'd stuck to that.

Not really. The only time during the OT that we are seeing the story through the eyes of the droids is the first half of ANH. After they go to Mos Eisley, it's no longer told through their eyes.


Although unrelated, one burning question I've always had is when exactly does 3PO learn all these millions of forms of communication. He is built out of junk by a 7 year old and never showcases any functionality at all throughout episodes I or II. Instead of being a completely worthless prop shoehorned in to remind us that it is a star wars movie. It would have been neat to see the droid pair serve some function for diplomats (perhaps the Organa family) of the republic. I figured 3PO's translating skills would have really been vert helpful somewhere in the senate.

As seen in the newest season of the Clone Wars, Threepio is of the service of Padme so that seems to be a good place for him to be downloaded with the 6 million forms of communications.

Ji'dai
04-17-2005, 03:05 PM
Not really. The only time during the OT that we are seeing the story through the eyes of the droids is the first half of ANH. After they go to Mos Eisley, it's no longer told through their eyes.

In Return of the Jedi, 3PO, with a little help from R2, briefs the Ewoks on the struggle against the Empire. So the droids were aware of the adventures of their human companions if they weren't always around them. The droids may not always be on screen or a part of the central narrative, but the narrative itself comes from them.

This idea that the droids were the central characters of the story comes from Lucas himself. I knew I had read this interpretation somewhere and I found it last night. There's an interview with Lucas in the Empire Strikes Back theatre program guide where he states this.


"I love machines. I love Gadgets. It's fun to be able to make little gadgets that work. I think part of it with Star Wars was that robots had always been bad and I decided to make them good and make them the main characters of the film. When I started it was an outrageous idea. Everybody thought that I was crazy because in the beginning the robots were really much more central characters than they are now.

All my friends said, 'Oh boy, cold robots. You're never going to get any emotion,' all that kind of thing. So I was eventually intimidated into putting them further into the background, but still making them central characters.

Ultimately, in the complete saga, they're really the only characters that follow all the way through because it's really their adventure in the end - though most people don't know that yet. They will find out eventually but it will take a number of years before it finally becomes evident that the story is from their point of view."

Rocketboy
04-17-2005, 05:32 PM
Don't forget, Lucas also once said that Star Wars is a nine part saga.

Like many writers, his story and ideas change as they progress.

Mr. JabbaJohnL
04-17-2005, 05:55 PM
Yeah, the droids were supposed to be like the passive narrators of the saga. Another alteration of the story we see in the prequels. Another reason the prequels never felt right. It really would have been neat if they'd stuck to that. At least don't make 3PO the work of Anakin! Although unrelated, one burning question I've always had is when exactly does 3PO learn all these millions of forms of communication. He is built out of junk by a 7 year old and never showcases any functionality at all throughout episodes I or II. Instead of being a completely worthless prop shoehorned in to remind us that it is a star wars movie. It would have been neat to see the droid pair serve some function for diplomats (perhaps the Organa family) of the republic. I figured 3PO's translating skills would have really been vert helpful somewhere in the senate.
SPOILERS - For the extremely weak at heart

I don't ever remember it being mentioned in the films that the droids were telling the story. Ideas change over time - there is no Journal of the Whills (unless it's mentioned in ROTS), and things like that. In ROTS, C-3PO is in the service of the Republic, I guess similar to what TC-14 was to the Trade Federation in TPM or something like that. I'd assume that he translates languages and whatnot. But in the Senate, from what we've seen anyway, most species' delegates speak Basic, when in a Senate session at least. If they needed translators, there are likely computer programs in the pods, the same things they vote on (not shown in the films).


A possible prologue to Episode I could have been set in the "present day" at an archaeological dig on some desolate planet. At the site, two rusted-out husks that we barely recognize as R2 & 3PO are unearthed. The two ancient droids are carefully recovered and removed to a field laboratory. A dusty, scruffy, bearded academic in fedora and leather jacket carefully reactivates them in an attempt to access their memory banks. Eureka! Although much of the data is corrupted or lost, enough information can be retrieved to reconstruct this ancient period of a long time ago.
This idea is very cool! However, I think it'd work better in comics or books, and not in the films themselves.

Grif
04-18-2005, 03:41 PM
According to starwars.com:


Unlike hard science fiction such as Star Trek, where the action clearly stems from a civilization on our own planet and takes place in a definable future, Star Wars is a fantasy. As such, it doesnít have to obey any of the laws of physics, of space, or time. George Lucas deliberately left it vague and open to fan speculation--thatís part of the fun of Star Wars. Itís other-worldly, yet somehow familiar. Itís futuristic, yet somehow anachronistic.

http://www.starwars.com/community/askjc/steve/askjc20000515.html

Ji'dai
04-18-2005, 08:54 PM
Don't forget, Lucas also once said that Star Wars is a nine part saga.

Like many writers, his story and ideas change as they progress.

Yep, good point. I don’t think Lucas had the familial relationships nailed down from the beginning as he’d like us to believe. I think he made up a lot of stuff as he went along. But there’s a lot to be said for consistency. I wish Lucas had stuck to his guns on some of his previously stated ideas and had later resisted the urge to change elements in the original trilogy.

Grif, I’m glad Star Wars is more science fantasy than science fiction. The technology is futuristic but it’s not really necessary that we have a complete understanding on how and why it works. I think it would actually detract from the adventure if the dialogue delved too deeply into the technical workings of the technology. We know that hyperdrives allow faster than light travel. Does it really matter how? They are temperamental and fail at inopportune times, but that's good enough for me. I don’t want to see Han and Chewie pull out the schematics and debate the physics behind the system.

If I want science fiction, I’ll watch Star Trek. Since Trek is set in Earth’s future the technology used is based on current scientific ideas and/or theories. So to maintain a sense of continuity with past scientific progress Star Trek usually emphasizes science over fantasy. And by the time you get to the 24th century, ships are even swarming with psychiatric counselors. So if quantum and theoretical physics ain’t your thing, then you can always get a dose of futuristic psycho-babble :D

Imagine this scene if Star Wars was more like Star Trek:


INT - (Millennium Falcon) Han, Chewbacca, Leia, & C-3PO are in the Falcon, which is being pursued by TIE Fighters and an Imperial Star Destroyer. The ship is rocked by blaster fire. Han & Chewie are manning the cockpit controls. The Falcon’s hyperdrive is malfunctioning. Leia & 3PO are in the rear cabin racing to effect repairs so the ship can escape into hyperspace.

C-3PO: The hyperdrive motivator is shot! Oh, we’ll never make the jump to light-speed!
HAN: Computer! What is the status of the hyperdrive motivator?
COMPUTER: The hyperdrive motivator is off-line. Hyperdrive back-up systems are not responding.
LEIA: Breach! I’ve a got a hyperdrive breach! We’re venting drive plasma! I’m sealing off the engineering module!
COMPUTER: Warning. Hyperdrive core meltdown in one minute.
CHEWBACCA: Gruwwwal!
HAN: I know, I know! Leia, get out of there! That’s an order! Computer! Status of defensive shields!
COMPUTER: Primary defensive shields are inoperable. Secondary defensive shields are at five percent.

LEIA races into the cockpit and straps herself into a chair. She is followed by C-3PO. The ship is rocked by multiple blaster concussions.

COMPUTER: Secondary defensive shields are off-line. Alluvial dampers failing.
C-3PO: Sir! Sir! I’ve re-routed the hyperdrive’s coolant system! Drive plasma will be vented to the sub-light engines. When ignited, we should generate the 1.21 gigawatts needed to attain light-speed!
COMPUTER: Warning. Hyperdrive core meltdown imminent. Radiation detected in rear cabin.
HAN: You heard Goldenrod, Chewie! Feed in the jump coordinates!
CHEWBACCA: Raaarrr!
C-3PO: But sir! The odds of successfully surviving a drive plasma ignition are 725 to 1! We’ll be vaporized!
HAN: Never tell me the odds! Chewie, maximum warp! ENGAGE!
CHEWBACCA: Aroo?
HAN: PUNCH IT, Chewie!
CHEWBACCA: Roworr!

The ship is rocked as the engines ignite the plasma. Starlight streams by the cockpit window as the Falcon accelerates to light speed.

INT: (STAR DESTROYER BRIDGE) In a brilliant flash of light, the Falcon disappears into hyperspace.

Grif
04-19-2005, 04:16 PM
Grif, Iím glad Star Wars is more science fantasy than science fiction. The technology is futuristic but itís not really necessary that we have a complete understanding on how and why it works. I think it would actually detract from the adventure if the dialogue delved too deeply into the technical workings of the technology. We know that hyperdrives allow faster than light travel. Does it really matter how? They are temperamental and fail at inopportune times, but that's good enough for me. I donít want to see Han and Chewie pull out the schematics and debate the physics behind the system.

If I want science fiction, Iíll watch Star Trek. Since Trek is set in Earthís future the technology used is based on current scientific ideas and/or theories. So to maintain a sense of continuity with past scientific progress Star Trek usually emphasizes science over fantasy. And by the time you get to the 24th century, ships are even swarming with psychiatric counselors. So if quantum and theoretical physics ainít your thing, then you can always get a dose of futuristic psycho-babble :D


Hey man I agree with you. That's part of the greatness of Star Wars, almost anything is possible. I was just saying that nobody can really say exactly when all this took place and to me it doesn't really matter that much when it took place.

Von-El
04-19-2005, 08:02 PM
I posted this topic asking of when Star Wars takes place in relation to Earth since it was a long time ago in a far off galaxy. I posted this question on the official SW message board site a few years ago and didn't get many responses or anything worth mentioning.

Although this is science fantasy, a galaxy far far away and a long time ago says that it takes place in the same universe as Earth, but we are unheard of to the SW universe.

What one person said on another board was that Stephen Spielberg actually met ET's people and they told him of where they come from and the history.
Remember ET's people had a cameo in the Senate scene in EP I (as a heads up to Spielberg).

Sometime later Spielberg decided to make a movie on one of ET's people.

It was said that George Lucas being a good friend of his decided to do a Star Wars movie based on ETs people--a get rich movie.


Now seriously, I was thinking Star Wars takes place thousands, hundreds of thousands or perhaps almost millions of years ago according to Earth timeline. This is not to say Earth was involved but clearly was not.


Recently I had this theory that perhaps the Jedi are the Ancients, and off-shoot of the Ancients or direct descendants of the Ancients from Stargate & Stargate Atlantis to explain their vast power and technology.

I read on a website that the Star Wars galaxy is much, farther than the
Pegasus Galaxy in which Stargate Atlantis takes place--where Atlantis exists. I read that SW is 850 trillion light years away from Earth.

Time and space is a funny thing because something 850 trillion years ago is so far away it actually takes place in either the past or future.

Off topic, I've concluded a long time ago that Thundercats takes place in Earth's far future in which Earth is called Third Earth.