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SPECULATION: Will “Mara Jade” Be In Star Wars: Episode 7?

In 1991 Timothy Zahn published “Heir to the Empire” the first Star Wars work to further the adventures of Luke, Han, and Leia in the era after Episode VI. It was met with enthusiasm and excitement and quickly became a fan favorite, and New York Times Best Seller, not only for renewing interest in our galaxy far, far away but for introducing the fanbase to a new character named “Mara Jade.” So will Mara make her big screen debut in Episode VII? Jump aboard to find out . . .

Back on April 25th, 2014 StarWars.com released an Official Announcement about Star Wars canon moving forward:

In order to give maximum creative freedom to the filmmakers and also preserve an element of surprise and discovery for the audience, Star Wars Episodes VII-IX will NOT tell the same story told in the post-Return of the Jedi Expanded Universe. (Emphasis mine.)

With this one release, what everyone suspected became officially official — the Expanded Universe will be over-written. A collective gasp rang out as many die-hard EU fans “felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.” Yes, the EU as we knew it has died. This article is not the place to debate the pros or cons of such a decision as that war rages-on across the internets as I type. I will say this — Chewbacca LIVES!!! And for that I am most thankful!

So we know Chewie lives, but what about some of the other fan favorites that have emerged from the EU? What about “Jacen” and “Jaina Solo?” What about their little brother “Anakin?” What about “Ben Skywalker?” Or “Grand Admiral Thrawn?” What will become of Mara Jade? And therein lies the crux of this article — Will Mara Jade be in Star Wars: Episode VII?

Those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it, as the saying goes. Thus, before we look ahead let us look back at some Star Wars history to see if it sheds light on our present and future . . . 

A long time ago in a galaxy not so far away a young filmmaker named George Lucas made a little film called THX-1138. Oh, wait, wrong film. He, obviously, made Star Wars. Perhaps you heard of it? Anyway, Star Wars started out as one film, but George had so much material that he eventually broke it into 3 films. Many websites chronicle the history of this, but none are more thorough than The Secret History of Star Wars: 

Prevue: How many pages, do you recall? 

Lucas: A little over 200 pages. It was like a worm. I cut it in half and both halves got to be as long as the original.

Prevue: That’s about twice as long as most ordinary screenplays.

Lucas: Yes it is. Most screenplays run about 100 or 110 pages. That was my second screenplay. I decided it was too long. It covered too much material, and what was in the script wasn’t really filled out enough. It was too episodic and too fragmented. So I took the screenplay and divided it into three stories, and rewrote the first one.

As Star Wars became insanely successful George began talking about as many as twelve films! 

There is an element of some mystery surrounding the fourth “trilogy” that was once attached to the Star Wars. Lucas today denies that he had any plans or story for the third trilogy (Episodes VII-IX), which isn’t the case, but we can do one better: what was the story for Episodes X, XI, and XII?

Am I crazy? If you’ve read Secret History of Star Wars you will know what I am referring to–in early 1978, it was announced in Time that there were twelve Star Wars films in the franchise. This isn’t a typo; Lucasfilm referenced them frequently in publications such as Bantha Tracks from 1978 to 1980, and Lucas himself even addresses them in the May 1980 issue, stating he had limited the series to nine films instead.

The twelve episode saga was backed-up by Dale Pollock who, while researching Lucas for his biography, was shown the outlines for the infamous twelve episodes.

This is what Pollock had to say about the outlines:

“It was originally a 12-part saga,” Pollock told TheWrap. “The three most exciting stories were 7, 8 and 9. They had propulsive action, really interesting new worlds, new characters. I remember thinking, ‘I want to see these 3 movies.’” 

And, all things being equal, Pollock and the rest of the world will see those films! Whether or not there will be nine or twelve is a matter for another time and perhaps article. For now, we want to know — What did George intend for Episodes VII, VIII & IX, after all the scripts are based on his treatments?

In 1983 George described the thematic structure of the Sequel Trilogy like this:

“The sequel focuses mainly on Luke, and Lucas says Mark Hamill will have first crack at the part if he is old enough. “If the first trilogy is social and political and talks about how society evolves,” Lucas says, “Star Wars is more about personal growth and self-realisation, and the third deal with moral and philosophical problems. In Star Wars, there is a very clear line drawn between good and evil. Eventually you have to face the fact that good and evil aren’t that clear-cut and the real issue is trying to understand the difference. The sequel is about Jedi knighthood, justice, confrontation, and passing on what you have learned.” [Denise Worrell, Icons:Intimate Portraits p. 186]

In Starlog magazine, Issue 127, February 1988, George is interviewed and asked the following question:

Starlog: Why didn’t you give Luke a girl?

Lucas: You haven’t seen the last three yet.

Clearly this is a reference to his intention to give Luke Skywalker a female companion. I say “companion” because even George wasn’t sure anyone would be “married” in Star Wars. Again, from Worrell’s Icons

“In the sequel Luke would be a sixty-year-old Jedi knight. Han Solo and Leia would be together, although Lucas says, “They might be married, or not. We have never actually discussed marriage in this galaxy. I don’t even know if it exists yet. Who knows what relationship they will have? I mean, they’re together, let’s put it that way.” 

In the same issue of Starlog we read:

Luke would have a romantic relationship with a female love interest. Bill Warren. “George Lucas: Father of the Force”. Starlog #127, February 1988.

We know from the Prequels that Jedi were forbidden from love and marriage and kids. But we all saw how that turned out for the “fighting monks.” And of course Luke is pretty much free to re-build the Jedi Order in his image, begging many questions like: Can Jedi be married (if such a thing exists)? Can they have children? How many Padawans can they train? When does training begin? And so on and so forth. 

Let us focus on the concept of marriage here for a second. When George gave that interview to Starlog magazine he was still pretty fresh off his devastating divorce in 1983. It is understandable that he would be pretty ambivalent at best and bitter at worst toward the institution of marriage, not even to mention the fact that it’s mired in Earthly traditions that Lucas’ humans probably don’t adhere to. At the time, his hero, his avatar, Luke Skywalker perhaps never found love in his mind. But now George is happily married, one would presume, and it seems logical that Luke, too, could find love. We all know that as Jedi Master his “passing on what he has learned” has nothing to do with familial ties and everything to do with those potential Jedi strong in the Force, but wouldn’t it make sense for Luke to pro-create as a way to re-build the Jedi Order and pass on what he has learned? So does Luke Skywalker have a mate? 

In answer to that question I’ll simply present some facts and RUMORS, and let you decide.

The first, and perhaps most telling piece of evidence is an article that Viral Hide posted back on April 11th, 2014 — Karen Gillan cut her RED HAIR for Guardians of the Galaxy and this is what she had to say about it:

Was it just very liberating to shave your head, or did you have any moments of tears while they were doing it? 

No, I was laughing hysterically.  It really hit me when I woke up the next morning.  That’s when I was like, “Oh, my god, where’s my hair?!”  But also, everyone kept me in good spirit.  Everyone was laughing and telling jokes.  Marvel are the best company to work for, they really are.  They treat you really well.  They made my hair into the most incredible well-made wig and they gave it to the Star Wars people.  It’s just so funny to think that my hair is made into a wig, next to all these Star Wars monster heads in a warehouse.  I thought that was really funny.

I posted this bit in the Darth Plagueis article, but it also applies here as well since the entertainment industry is all about synergy:

“Hasbro has been directed by Lucasfilm, Ltd. to avoid the Expanded Universe like the plague. Not only is it next to impossible that we’ll see a brand new Expanded Universe figure in the near future, older and hard to find figures will NEVER see re-release either. 

Hasbro said, and I quote, to “not expect to ever see Jaina Solo or Jacen Solo or any other older Comic Packs figure re-released in any way to get out to collectors.”

However, the one figure from the EU — Plagueis is CANON — that was released as part of the current “Black Series” is Mara Jade as seen here:

According to a source, who may or may not be legit, this was done because she WILL be in Episode VII and all other EU figures were pulled because of two reasons — they’re either obsolete as the EU is over-written or they will be incorporated into the saga and Disney attempts to keep it a surprise. It seems to us, quite obvious, that if they continue to authorize the release of certain figures then it is because Disney/LFL intends them to become canon. However, note that the figure released is a young version of Jade, the reason for which will become apparent later.

A while ago there were some rumblings that Disney could incorporate characters from the EU as “templates,” for lack of a better description, but give them different names. We’ve also received contradictory tips that some of the EU characters that Disney incorporates WILL KEEP their names. This is welcome news as several of the important EU characters like Mara Jade, the Solo twins and Ben Skywalker are endeared favourites. While I agree that changing a lot of EU characters will be necessary if only to divorce the movies from the EU and not have to stick to the characters that were created therein, in the case of Mara Jade it doesn’t make sense. It doesn’t make sense that they would keep her red hair for instance. Why not change it? It also doesn’t make sense to make a figure for her if you’re going to change her name. In my opinion I think Mara Jade will be one of the only EU characters Disney keeps as an almost perfect 1 to 1 translation. In this case Mara has too much history and too many devoted fans for them to just change-her-up for the sake of changing-her-up. By keeping her intact they don’t really have to “introduce” her. 

And speaking of “introductions” we’ve received contradictory rumors from a couple different sources. Of course, these rumors should be taken with a hearty dose of salt at this stage and we’re all just trying to get the facts straight. With that in mind, the original report was that Mara Jade would be appearing in Rebels and then Episode VII, but lately we’ve been hearing that she will be introduced in Episode VII before Rebels. According to this source the actress who will be playing Mara Jade is supposed to be a BIG surprise and in fact has to cover up when coming and going from the sets so as NOT to be identified or recognized. Along this same theme the actress in question cannot and will not discuss being involved with Episode VII at all until its release in December 2015. Thus, it is very likely Disney will make no mention of her or Jade until they are absolutely forced to via a TMZ leak or something.

As if all these rumblings, these little disturbances in the Force weren’t enough to pique your interest, I offer you this little tid-bit. As always take with more than a few grains of salt and a glass of your beverage of choice. Making Star Wars posted an article back in May about James Luceno’s CANON book — remember everything going forward, games, apps, comics, and books is canon now — called “Tarkin.” You’ll remember James Luceno’s name as he was tasked with writing the all-important “Darth Plagueis” novel. Anyway, here is the interesting part from the article:
Now to the most intriguing (and most irritatingly mysterious) thought of the day on this subject: a Mara Jade appearance in Tarkin. Tweeter Alex Rybak (AKA, @Chewbacca89) posted the opinion, “I think we will see Mara Jade in this book…” When I asked him what made him think that, he replied, “A mixture of gut feelings and the whisperings of someone involved in it.” (now if that doesn’t rile of Star Wars fan up, I don’t know what will). He went on to say, “Yea the person I talked to won’t confirm either, but the fact that it’s possible is exciting!”

That will be very interesting to watch as November 4th, the “Tarkin” release date, approaches. IF Jade is in the book, Jade is in the galaxy, meaning likely to appear in Star Wars: Episode VII as well as Star Wars: Rebels, although I can’t see Disney/LFL letting the cat out of the bag in a book versus their HUGE tentpole. Very, very unlikely . . . 

BUT, if all this isn’t enough to convince you, then I have to ask, Who is Domhnall Gleeson playing??? While everyone was talking about the rumors regarding Alex Pettyfer and Ryan Gosling, NO ONE saw ol’ Domhnall coming.

People were on the lookout for blondes while a ginger snuck in. Does it not make sense that IF his mother has RED HAIR a certain [Ben] Skywalker would also?

And speaking of ol’ red herself, who will wear the wig? The fan, as in fantasy, casting has centered around actresses like Gillian Anderson, Christina Hendricks, and Amy Yasbeck solely for their red locks, but a tip from February suggested that Sigourney Weaver had met with JJ about a possible role. This makes sense for two reasons, the wig and her age — she’s 64, which also happen to be her height — 6′ 4″. Just kidding, she’s only 6. Yet, Sigourney may just be too busy to do Star Wars since she has already signed on for Avatar 2-4, which is filming all at once.

In summation, I believe that Mara Jade will be in Episode VII mainly because it makes sense for the “family saga” and gives legitimacy to [Ben] Skywalker as Luke’s son. I don’t know who’s playing Jade, but apparently someone who isn’t a “normal” redhead as the actress in question requires a wig. But the biggest factor for me is quite simple — Mara Jade has EXISTED longer in the Star Wars universe than she hasn’t. Confusing, I know, let me explain. Mara Jade has been a fan-favorite for about 24 years!!! Star Wars only existed for a mere 14 years without her and Disney/LFL knows this. What do you believe?


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  • WackyBantha

    No, I believe she won’t.

    • Anonymous

      Silence your filthy mouth and don’t ruin it for the rest of us!!!

  • Anonymous

    I really hope she will… she is a badass

    • Anonymous

      She better be confirmed by day the trailer is released, or they’re be hell to pay.

  • Anonymous

    Well written Echo-07. Love mara ! If she is in that would be awesome.

  • Anonymous

    I guess it all lines up nicely but no thanks.

  • Anonymous

    Mara Jade vs Darth (former) Caedus. That’s a fight I would love to see

  • DSK

    No, she won’t, because George Lucas and J.J. Abrams don’t give a f*** about the EU (and they’re right in my opinion).

    • Anonymous

      Yet they have both already drawn from that well, there are also articles about what George loved the most, like Alyaa Secure from comic to EP 3.
      Also watch the JJ Abrams sw 7 set video, the creature is from an Eu species.
      Eu will be a basis to draw from, Over stated this with introduction to the Lucasfilm deal. Some Eu sucks, some is Grand -just like parts of each individual episodes and trilogies. Some would have rather had Wookies in ROTJ some settle for Ewoks, while others hate the film. But don’t speak for people you don’t know.

    • Anonymous

      Says the idiot who probably never read a good novel or comic in his life. You’re probably the sort who never reads and only waits for the movie based on the book to come out.

    • Anonymous

      They never gave a f*** about the EU and look what we got, three shitty prequels and a new shitty seventh movie. And let’s not forget how Abrams basically destroyed the Star Trek universe…

    • Anonymous

      I have to agree with you there, EU is over lapping and inconsistent. I would like to see templates of certain characters from EU but I don’t want to see it followed to the letter. This would give new book writers a chance to rewrite EU under a different banner after rebels/new trilogy/new games/new action figures flood the markets. Maybe Disney, marvel, and lucas films can keep a tighter lid on what appears in new Canon novels to avoid letting the books dictate the star wars universe as they have tried to do for so many years. I’d say the best approach to that would be review the books and only let them hit the shelves after movie directors have a chance to say yay or nay

  • Anonymous

    Nice picture. She looks like Amy Pohler. Heh.

  • Lots of interesting rumors there and I’d agree it’s in Disney’s best interest.

  • Anonymous

    Luke having a child will perfectly sum and signify that the old jedi order was wrong and that love is indeed good, and not to be suppressed because of fear and paranoia. However I don’t want any mara jade/relationship stuff with Luke as it would just drag down the plot. We have middle aged couple stuff with Han and Leia anyway. Maybe Luke’s partner could have died in childbirth like Padme. But I have a feeling that George wouldn’t allow Luke to have a child as he’s been stuck in the prequel garbage for so long and forgotten where the context is in the current timeline

    • Anonymous

      I agree. Star Wars is best with little, but substantial romance . We leanred this from Episodes II and III.

    • Anonymous

      Lighter romances and fewer women being choked, please.

      • Anonymous

        You don’t object to men being choked?

    • Anonymous

      She could get the Windu treatment, that is be in the movie and alive just with little screen time. The focus will be on the younger cast not Luke/Her. Having her however estabishes her without cutting into the screen time of others. From that they would create the abilty to flesh out the relationship between her and Luke however they want with the new novels etc to fit Disney’s new timeline that is undoubtedly coming.

    • Anonymous

      More women being choked! EQUALITY

    • Anonymous

      AnonymousJune 12, 2014 at 7:31 PM,

      Lucas’s idea of Jedi non-attachment is well grounded in real life Eastern spiritual philosophies. And that’s got nothing to do with “love”, actually, but everything to do with suffering.

      But since you obviously do not know the first thing about this, it would seem, you’d do well to refrain yourself from commenting on it any further.

    • Anonymous

      To the anon above… The eastern philosophy of the first three films is trumped by the thermatic theme of the entire trilogy which is best concluded with Luke having to now be a father himself. This is what’s best for the franchise as a whole, not doing so would be like doing a last minute rewrite just because lucas was upset after his divorce but now he’s now remarried to a new woman now, and Luke has always been an analogy of his life.

      But since you obviously do not know the first thing about this, it would seem, you’d do well to refrain yourself from commenting on it any further.

    • Anonymous

      This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    • Anonymous

      I think it would be cool to have her die in a lightsaber battle moments after skywalker child or children escape and on the run go into hiding. Then re-emerge as badasses with incomplete training, the will of the Force has chosen the skywalker lineage to shape the fate of the Galaxy.

  • Anonymous

    Wow! Very good article, Echo-07!

    • Anonymous

      Yes, very good as always Echo-07. You should write another speculative piece about Luke himself, and whether he is the head-Master at Jedi School or a hermit like old Ben.

  • I truly hope so!

  • Anonymous

    Dude, enough. SHE WILL NOT BE IN EPISODE 7. It is okay that there is no news to talk about right now.

    • Anonymous

      How do you know that?

    • Really, how do you know she wont? Did somebody tell you that? Who is your source?

    • No one has to. She didn’t exist in Lucas’s outline, cuz she was a Zahn character. I guess I can’t say that it’s impossible for them to insert Mara, Knowing JJ and OT Lucas, I’m like 99.99999% sure she won’t be in the film.

    • you’re 99.9999999% sure she will not be in the movie. So you know exactly how the movie goes and what characters are in it or not? So can you tell us all who is in the movie and who is not?
      for all we know fucking Jar Jar could be in it. You cannot say “this person will not be in it” based on your interpretation of these events. That is you’re opinion. While it is probable that she wont be in the movies, we cannot necessarily rule her out.

    • But they did a rewrite of the Arndt script which was said to be based on Lucas’ treatment. JJ likes to please fans, it would be smart of him to include her.

      • Anonymous

        JJ didn’t do too well of a job pleasing star trek fans for the most part but I loved his reboots.

    • Anonymous

      Luke may have a wife, but I can almost guarantee her name will not be Mara Jade. They’re only using EU characters as foundations for brand new characters. That is known fact. It’s been said by officials.

    • Anonymous

      And if a Mara Jade-like character is in the sequel trilogy, I’m pretty certain she won’t have red hair/black leather jumpsuit, ect. Too similar to Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow. Disney wouldn’t want to risk the confusion.

    • My assumption is based on JJ’s previous work, and just the kind of guy he is in general (hipster/mac enthusiast/ socialite). I don’t think he sat around reading Zahn novels or playing 90’s SW games. If he inserts characters that weren’t in the outline then believe me, it won’t be one that someone besides Lucas, himself, or Kasdan envisioned.

      “JJ likes to please fans” well… what about those who don’t want Mara Jade to be a character? I think a lot of us want surprises and something fresh, not recreations of EU novels. These films shouldn’t be like capcom games where they take characters from different franchises and insert them into others, I want something more creative than that… I don’t think I’m alone in thinking this way.

    • Excuse me, what it’s said by officials is “the universe fans know is changing”, which doesn’t mean it’s rejected at all. Stop talking like you have more information than the others because right now everything is ambiguous. We can’t cocnfirm anything, but everything this article explains makes perfect sense.

    • Anonymous

      Well, if Mara Jade is in it, why not Kyle Katarn? why not Jacen or Jana or Ben or Thrawn or the Vong or any of the other EU characters? Fans will be asking these questions if they pick and choose instead of just putting the EU on the shelf and using it as an influence rather than a source. I’m not claiming that I have more information about anything, I’m merely referencing passed articles on this very site saying that the Lucasfilm Story Group has decided to take the EU out of the picture and start anew.

      You’re excused

    • Anonymous

      Dave Filoni and the Press release stated that they would be mining Legends for years to come. Did you read the whole press release?

    • Anonymous

      I really doubt that Mara Jade will be a character in EP VII. I do hope that Luke has a wife and Jedi children though simply because they were interesting in the EU and would make interesting templates.

      – G

    • Anonymous

      Timothy Zahn talked a lot with Lucas before writing the Thrawn trilogy. JJ Abrams have been seen meeting with Zahn. Hope to see Jade in the new movie:)

    • Anonymous

      AnonymousJune 12, 2014 at 11:48 PM
      Yes, I read the whole press release. That in no way suggests that they’ll be pulling full characters, stories or plot details from the EU. It’d be so much easier and interesting for the general audience if they chose to build on a renewed Star Wars universe with new material for the next 40 years. Star Wars has never been a novel-based movie franchise and I don’t believe it ever will be. The EU and the SWU are two completely different franchises now. I don’t like it any more than you do, but it’s just the way things are. We all have to get over it no matter how much we’d like to see EU characters and story arcs carried over to the big screen.

    • Anonymous

      To the Mara Jade doubters:

      Always with you what can’t be done. That is why you fail. :P

    • Anonymous

      To Mara Jade Enthusaists:

  • Anonymous

    My theory is that Mara Jade will be Gwendoline Christie. It has been mentioned that she is about the same height as Sigourney Weaver although younger. They would want a younger actress to be able to do all of the physical stunts. Domhnall Gleeson could easily pass as the son of Gwendoline and Mark Hamill. The twist could be that shortly after the ‘Ben Skywalker’ character is born, Mara in her mid thirties (Gwendoline’s current age) she would be killed or thought to be killed in a flashback. Luke is left to raise Ben on his on Tatooine as a hermit. Thus explains why Domhall was sitting next to Mark in the readthough. The revelation could be that Mara was brought back to life by Asajj Ventress, played by Lupita Nyong’o, who also was also brought back to life by ‘the ancient fear’. They are both in an eternally in the age that they were when they died, explaining why both actresses are in their thirties versus seventies, as sith witches.

    • Anonymous

      This isn’t even good fan fiction.

      • Anonymous

        Lol, glad I’m not the only one who thought that.

    • Gwendoline Christie is 6’3. Sigourney is 6. Not even close to the same height.

    • I think Gwendoline is playing a wookiee, but Mara Jade is possible and I think Lupita is playing Ventress also. But Watch us be all wrong!

      • Anonymous

        Lupita is playing an entertainer chained to a Hutt over a rancor cage.

    • Anonymous


      – G

    • Anonymous

      Hoping Gwendoline will be a nighsister or a Yuuzhan Vongish kinda character or something like that.

  • DEKKA129

    It’s certainly possible that Mara could be in the new films. Given the fact that they’re discarding the existing EU, though, I would tend to figure that if they do create a version of Mara for the ST, her backstory will probably be simplified over what it was in the books, if only for the sake of not having to do a lot of exposition about her in the movie – which they would have to do if they kept her EU backstory, because plenty of moviegoers won’t have read the books or have the first clue as to who Mara Jade is.

  • Anonymous

    Domhnall Gleeson is playing Mara Jade. They cast a male actor for the role to throw you off. His latest pics show him with long hair but it isn’t a wig. The wig has a much larger role in the film than playing Mara’s hair. Lets just say Jabba’s bloodline didn’t end with him when he died. Sisterrrr. He has a twin sisterrrr. #spaceslugswithredhair

    • Anonymous