The Star Wars saga is known for cutting or otherwise altering certain scenes in later editions – but what about the scenes that never made it to the screen in the first place, denied their place in movie history?
That was the status of the original introduction to Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker, cut from A New Hope (or just Star Wars, if you’re particular about titles) but now available to watch on Disney Plus.
And Hamill has revealed that the scene, which sees Luke watch Darth Vader’s attack on Princess Leia’s ship from Tatootine before heading to Tosche Station (you know, for the power converters) is one he was pretty gutted to lose when the film was first released.
“There a couple of things that are good for the character,” told Avengers directors Joe and Anthony Russo on their Instagram live series Russo Bros. Pizza Film School.
“No. 1, he is ridiculed roundly by his peers. So he’s not particularly cool or popular. Koo Stark is the only other female actor in the movie… and she calls me ‘Wormie’. So I am not popular.
“And then I bump into Biggs Darklighter, played by Garrick Hagon, and I go ‘Wow!’ You can see we’re good friends. He’s dressed in an Imperial uniform and I’m going, ‘Wow! That’s so great! I can’t wait until I can get off the dump of a planet and join with you.’
“And he takes me outside and says, ‘Luke, as soon as I get the chance, I am going to jump ship and join the Rebels.'”
In other words, yes, Luke was ready to go wings up in a TIE Fighter and barbecue some Rebel Scum if it meant getting off Tatooine, changing his mind when he saw the true evil of the Empire in action. Or at least that would have been the narrative, if the scene hadn’t been cut.
“The only reason that is interesting to me is that Luke has no political persuasion,” Hamill explained.
“He thinks it’s great he is in the Empire! Luke wants to be in the Empire if it will get him off the farm! So he is completely pure in that he is not politically motivated in any way, shape or form.”
In other words, Luke had to get woke or go broke – and now fans can see that struggle in all its undeleted glory.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is available on DVD, Blu-ray and 4K now, as well as on Disney Plus, Sky Cinema Premiere and NOW TV.
You can sign up to Disney Plus for £5.99 a month or £59.99 a year.