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Tie Fighter Pilot in Star Wars

People love a good underdog story, and with the exception of the Star Wars prequels, typically the heroes in the Star Wars movies are the underdogs. Whether it’s the Empire or the First Order, the bad guys tend to have the upper hand, but in the end, that never really works out too well for them.

However, in anticipation of the new EA game Star Wars: Squadrons, a new short film has been released online on EA Star Wars YouTube channel, turning the Empire into underdogs. Take a look:

Well, well, how the tables have turned. This short film is surprisingly effective. It puts you in this TIE Fighter pilot’s shoes, feeling the weight of the moment against him, and continues to ratchet up the tension with every scene. It’s amazing what a little switch in perspective will do to make a once-villainous character empathetic.

If anything, this short concept piques my curiosity. I can’t help but wonder if there would be room in Star Wars fan's hearts for a trilogy from the Empire’s perspective. I can see the promise in that, but also the pitfalls as well.

Though Star Wars has its share of anti-heroes, the movies have never told a story from such a perspective. Perhaps the closest we’ve gotten to that kind of story is Solo: A Star Wars Story and Disney+’s The Mandalorian, a TV series about a Mandalorian bounty hunter after the fall of the Empire in Star Wars: The Return of the Jedi and the rise of the Republic.

We may have gotten even closer to a true Star Wars anti-hero movie with the Boba Fett movie that was in development several years ago. As you may recall, Boba Fett was a ruthless mercenary and bounty hunter for Darth Vader in The Empire Strikes Back and ended up falling into the Sarlacc Pit in The Return of the Jedi. So, making a movie from his perspective would have been quite a challenge, but also an interesting angle in the Star Wars universe. Needless to say, that movie ended up getting scrapped.

If a Star Wars anti-hero movie would ever happen, it’s not going to happen anytime soon. Following the end of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Disney has announced that the franchise is going on a hiatus. The studio cited wanting to take time to hire the right writers and plan ahead for the next movies.

Which, all things considered, that sounds like a wise approach. The Star Wars fandom isn't in the best of states, with many fans upset and divided over the latest trilogy. But I’m holding out hope that the future of Star Wars is bright and could give us a few unique perspectives, like this short film, in the universe.

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