~ see things before they happen :: ~ Nathaniel Reed's Virtual Edition ~ :: see things before they happen ~
Episode I

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Episode II
Attack of the Clones
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Episode III
Revenge of the Sith
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Episode VII
Plague of Doom
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Episode VIII
The Darkness Within
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Episode IX
Duel of the Fates
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Map of the Star Wars
Galaxy Click to go to the Virtual Map of the Star Wars Galaxy
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by Nathaniel Reed,  9/2005

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The Prophecy
And in time of greatest despair, there shall come a savior, and he shall be known as : THE SON OF THE SUN.
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"Journal of the Whills, 3:12"
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Nathaniel Reed's Virtual Edition ~ see things before they happen ~ original logo art by Scott Swearingin and Nat Reed
:: A trilogy of fan-fic set after Episode VI Return of the Jedi, and inspired by George Lucas' historical draft concepts ::
August 2015
Mini teaser trailer released for TFA !
31st August 2015
In late August, with no warning and "112 days to go", the Official Site released a 15-second teaser trailer on the social networking platform Instagram. We see the parade ground of the First Order ; then we see Rey tending to the new droid BB-8 against a verdant forest background, then glance up to the sky in surprise ; we cut to Kylo Ren moving through the snow-smattered trees, his red lightsabre drawn ; finally we cut to Finn, poised and determined within the same snowy environment, gripping high the blue lightsabre of Anakin and Luke. What was most exciting was hearing new John Williams' music, namely a 'riff' of sorts off Darth Vader's Imperial March Theme.

A new fuller trailer is promised for the autumn !!
The poster - or "teaser poster" - for The Force Awakens was revealed in mid August..... and it was created by the legendary artist Drew Struzan ! The poster shows Rey positioned between the dark and light halves, Finn holding Anakin's ignited lightsabre, Kylo Ren holding his red lightsabre, three suns over a moisture vaporator, and a hint of the Cloud City decor in the bottom right corner ! Fansite SW7News reports on a great interview with the artist too, who enthusiastically came out of retirement for the project. Drew Struzan poster for The Force Awakens
In related Sequel Trilogy news, the Offical Site announced that Colin Trevorrow will helm Episode IX ! The creator of Safety Not Guaranteed and the 2015 hit Jurassic World, will "head to Lucasfilm this year to begin working with artists and his fellow Star Wars directors".
In early August, the Entertainment magazine 'EW' ran a series of articles and pictures promoting The Force Awakens. Some insightful interviews were present, including comments from Abrams and Kasdan. Along with Kennedy's 'hook' of "Who is Luke Skywalker ??" to JJ Abrams, and the director's revelation that Kylo Ren is part of The Knights of Ren, and Snokes is definately a Dark Side user, Kasdan confirmed some details about the second Anthology film regarding the Young Han Solo ! Clearly the Captain is a favourite of Kasdan's, and it's likely we'll see Han in his 20s, and probably with the Millennium Falcon ! Might this mean we will also see Chewbacca, Lando Calrissian, and even Boba Fett and Jabba the Hutt ??!
It's Official ! Star Wars will be represented at the Disney parks in the USA, and hopefully rolled out internationally ! It appears there will be a 'Star Wars Land' that the visitor can literally enter into : at the locations of California and Florida will be two main focal points at the parks, including a mock-up of the Falcon's cockpit for a "secret attack mission" !
With a mere 3 and a half months to go until the release of the start of the official Sequel Trilogy, Star Wars Episode VII : The Force Awakens, I have been mulling over what we might expect to see, and what the audience reaction to that imagery might be. I have been following most of the spoilers for the last few years, and, assuming they're correct, at least in the general gist if not the detail, then predicting our reaction in December has become uppermost in my mind. Furthermore, such spoilers have made me deliberate over the creative decision-making that the film-makers, and the LFL 'Story Group' in particular, have had to make. By its very nature, this article will reference plot points that are spoilers to the majority of the audience.
George Lucas has always said his six part Saga was part of a mirroring symphonic pattern, deliberately presenting the same or similar moral choices before his familial characters to see how their decisions lead to different paths. What we have been learning about TFA is that it closely echoes Episode IV : A New Hope - we have the lonely desert dweller, repairing machinery, caught up in someone else's adventure, who also may hold a secret past and a secret ability ; a runaway droid who finds a new owner ; the hotshot pilot ; a new companion who is anxious and questions everything and is out of their depth ; a dark-clad helmet-wearing villain with a red lightsabre, again who may hold a secret past and a secret ability ; a fascist military commander focused unflinchingly on achieving his goals ; a shadowy puppet-master foe who has a greater agenda. And then we have the older generation, the 'OT Heroes', Leia leading the rebellious 'Resistance' against the Imperial 'First Order' ; reckless pirate captain Han, older, sagely experienced, but probably not wiser, with loyal shadow-companion, Chewbacca ; the wise old Jedi Warrior Luke Skywalker, destined to pass on the sword of knowledge and power to the next generation ; the droids Artoo-Detoo and See-Threepio, who, as espoused by Lucas, act as silent witnesses to the unfolding events, much like a traditional 'greek chorus'. Plot-wise, we have super-weapons, and infiltration, and revelations, and heroic deaths.
Now this could be applauded as clever story-telling, continuing with Lucas' aims of illustrating how "history repeats itself" ; the 'loose' echoing of the plot of ANH provides a familiar, almost comforting, embrace as we return to that much-loved universe.
Equally, critics could deride this new instalment as a "cheap copy" or even a "parody" on a beloved classic. The death of a Hero will shock and sadden many, they might question the necessity and efficacy of it, even those who know that this plot twist had been mooted for Episode VI. Furthermore, there is the 'external knowledge' that if Han Solo is to die before he meets Luke Skywalker, then the audience would know and understand that the 'classic heroes of the OT' will never share screentime together in Episode VII. Perhaps, even more shocking, if we are to believe the spoilers, will be the reaction to the appearance of the Master Jedi only at the end of the film. We know that Luke's role, like Old Ben's, is to act as a bridge carrying us over to the new generation, so we hope we will see much more of him ; but if we are to get bare glimpses through the duration, and a reveal only at the climax, might the audience feel cheated, feel confused ? I fear a 'backlash' following solely a 'Luke cameo'.
All the actors and visitors to the production have remarked how amazing, how clever, how dramatic, how funny, how sad The Force Awakens will be. Of course, one could argue that they would say that, that they would hardly warn us that this sequel will be a disaster. But if we are to believe them, then all the concerns outlined above must surely have been considered by the writers..... and presumably bravely and boldly addressed.
When Kathleen Kennedy was inviting the writer-director JJ Abrams to helm Episode VII, she asked him the hook of a question, "Who is Luke Skywalker ??". And that set off enough questions in Abrams' mind and everyone else's, for the production team to assemble. Such a question begs a much greater role for Luke Skywalker, even if he only has a cameo appearance in the first sequel film !
The LFL 'Story Group' has apparently brain-stormed plot ideas and outlined a story arc for not only the three Sequel episodes, but also the 'Anthology' stand-alone stories, and the time-frames in any supplementary material like novels and games. According to Kennedy, the writers/directors for the remaining sequel episodes have free rein to take the plot and the characters where they feel they need to go, but broadly-speaking they are to remain within this pre-determined story arc. There are rumours that Lucas' original notes for the Sequel Trilogy which had been handed over to Kennedy might have been discarded wholly or partially in favour of an original story treatment : I fear this might lose the spirit and essence of Lucas' vision of his Star Wars, but we won't know how much source material went into the genesis of the Sequel Trilogy until some time down the line with the release of the definitive 'Making Of' books.
But if you imagine yourself as part of the early days of the 'Story Group', making those creative decisions and outlining the future for our Heroes, it may very well be the case that they can confidently hold certain characters back in a cameo, kill off some characters, and perhaps even keep others temporarily absent, precisely because they know where those plots are leading : the death of one will propel another, while the cameo here in Episode VII might mean a much larger role in Episode VIII ; re-uniting certain characters now will pay dividends in the next episodes.
Where I'm both excited and concerned by what we will receive in December, I'm equally anxious - loyally - by how the audience might react. Regardless of the quality of the product, I know I will enjoy it and defend it ; having attempted my own story-writing, and done so within this universe, I know that creative decision making does not come easily, more so when one is trying to follow the tone of existing characters or place.
In my illustrated Episode VII : Plague of Doom Leia Solo dives her coraller towards the canyon floor and the newly erupting geysers ! Guided by the Force, she hopes to shake off some of the pursuing TIE fighters !
Guided by the Force, Leia dives towards the canyon florr and the newly erupting geysers to shake off the pursuing TIEs !
Having successfully drawn most of the TIE fighters into the destructive geysers, in an incredible move, Leia slams on the air-brakes, cuts her engines, flips her ship around, and blasts one of the two remaining TIEs into pieces !
Leia flips her ship around and blasts one of the two remaining TIE fighters !
Looking over her shoulder, Leia sees the canyon opening out towards the Imperial complex, and spots the aura gas factory nestled not too far away !
Leia spots the Imperial gas factory just beyond the end of the canyon !
On a related note, I belatedly spotted that my A-Wing cockpits were not preserving continuity. The screenshots of A-Wings that I had lifted from Episode VI proceeded from an exterior shot of the ILM spacecraft model to a side-profile view of the pilot, and this always showed a horizontal canopy bar just behind the pilot's head ! Cross-referencing in my recently purchased 'SW Costume' books, it appeared that the A-Wing pilot was dressed in green (with the B-Wing pilot in red and the Y-Wing pilot in cream). Re-checking the movie, it turns out that the shots indeed move from a Y-Wing to a cream-dressed pilot.... though there is one such shot that then cuts to an A-Wing ! So I spent a little while this month re-creating the A-Wing canopies with a vertically curving canopy bar in the handful of side views I had previously created ; here's one of Master Jedi Elder Dree Tan in his A-Wing cockpit.....
Adjusted artwork showing the new style of cockpit canopy.
You can see the VE artwork in the 'Kessel' art gallery as well as in the online illustrated story, and you can discuss this in the forum here !
Nathaniel Reed, 31st August 2015
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spoilers within some threads
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