How The Force Unleashed Nearly Became Star Wars Canon

Star Wars Force Unleashed Canon
(Image credit: Disney)

One of the most promising Star Wars games to come out last generation was LucasArts' Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, a tech-heavy take on the lore featuring the character Starkiller. Well, one of the writers and the voice actor for the character, explained that Force Unleashed almost became canon.

The news comes from a live-stream that actor Sam Witwer had over on, where he played several hours of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed and talked about the development of the game alongside LucasArts voice director and voice actor David W. Collins. They talked extensively about the development of the game, the characters and the story; including how there were talks with Star Wars: Rebels animation director, Dave Filoni, on possibly turning Galen "Starkiller" Marek from Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, into a canon character in the Star Wars: Rebels universe. According to Witwer...

Dave [Filoni] did share with me, by the way, he considered making Starkiller an Inquisitor in Star Wars Rebels. It didn't quite fit the story that they were telling, but he did think about it because he thought that would be interesting.

That would have been an interesting take, given that Galen "Starkiller" Marek's whole story arc was like a whirlwind of emotion, and his relationship with the Emperor and Darth Vader was like a constant tempest in a soup bowl on a table made of jello on a rocky boat during a sea storm.

It seems difficult to imagine Galen in any story outside of the Force Unleashed games. He was an extremely powerful Force user with the ability to bring down Star Destroyers. It's a little hard to keep a character like that contained to the background.

Within the story arc for the character everything played out as Marek and Darth Vader having this secret apprenticeship that was supposed to be unbeknown to the Emperor. The story didn't make all that much sense, given that the Emperor could sense Luke Skywalker but couldn't sense Marek, the latter of whom was far more powerful than Luke. It definitely broke immersion.

However, LucasArts wasn't necessarily as concerned with story for The Force Unleashed as it was concerned with technology. While Sam Witwer -- of Being Human and Smallville fame -- came in to voice and help write The Force Unleashed games, the major focus wasn't on star power or a deep story.

LucasArts was working with NaturalMotion's Euphoria in order to build and advance physics-based technology that operated in similar fashion to the way physically-based light rendering works now. Unfortunately, the limitations of the PS3 and Xbox 360 greatly limited what was possible with the Force Unleashed, and it certainly made the shortcomings in the story stand out more than they otherwise might have.

Even still, had Disney not bought LucasArts and had The Force Unleashed series sold slightly better, maybe Starkiller could have ended up in Star Wars Rebels and maybe the whole thing could have become canon. It's a fascinating bit of "what if?" to ponder over for fans of the series and for those who really enjoyed Witwer's turn as Starkiller.

Will Usher

Staff Writer at CinemaBlend.