Star Wars Tarkin Has an Opening Crawl, Author James Luceno Talks About New Canon.

Tarkin Cover

James Luceno, author of the forthcoming novel Star Wars Tarkin, revealed that he is following the franchise’s tradition to kick the story off with an opening crawl and posted the text for it online. In addition, he also talked about the state of Star Wars going forward. Click “read more” to hear what he had to say.


The text of the opening crawl is as follows (courtesy of Star Wars Underworld):

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. . . .
Five standard years have passed since Darth Sidious proclaimed himself galactic Emperor. The brutal Clone Wars are a memory, and the Emperor’s apprentice, Darth Vader, has succeeded in hunting down most of the Jedi who survived dreaded Order 66. On Coruscant a servile Senate applauds the Emperor’s every decree, and the populations of the Core Worlds bask in a sense of renewed prosperity.
In the Outer Rim, meanwhile, the myriad species of former Separatist worlds find themselves no better off than they were before the civil war. Stripped of weaponry and resources, they have been left to fend for themselves in an Empire that has largely turned its back on them.
Where resentment has boiled over into acts of sedition, the Empire has been quick to mete out punishment. But as confident as he is in his own and Vader’s dark side powers, the Emperor understands that only a supreme military, overseen by a commander with the will to be as merciless as he is, can secure an Empire that will endure for a thousand generations . . .




The novel spans many years, going into great detail regarding Wilhuff Tarkin’s mindset and how he became the unfettered Grand Moff that carried out sinister operations on the Death Star. When promoting his book to British magazine SciFiNow, author James Luceno discussed a few details regarding the book, as well as the state of affairs going forward with the Star Wars universe. He started off with a couple things we already knew – namely, that the new canon contradicts works of the old EU, and that while the Lucasfilm Story Group is being extremely quiet about Star Wars Episode VII details, but they are still giving writers tips on what they should avoid for better continuity – but he also mentioned that Star Wars Rebels has a multi-season plan, and that the novel ties in a little with the show (beyond name-dropping Tarkin himself in Spark Of Rebellion, of course). Some highlights from the interview include the following:


Star Wars: Tarkin is inspired by Hammer-era Peter Cushing.


“I grew up watching those great old horror movies that I remember him in. Everything from Revenge Of Frankenstein and Hound Of The Baskervilles – he was even in [an Amicus] Doctor Who film, at one point! I did try and make use of that in terms of helping flesh out his personality, his mannerisms, his general style.”


The Star Wars Expanded Universe still exists… for now. 


“I chose not to really reference too much EU material only because of the setting of the story, but it was still there. It was still there to pick and choose from. I think going forward what may happen is you may see writers writing around some of that older material that’s now classified as Legends – writing around it rather than trying to overwrite it.”

The Star Wars canon reboot could do more harm than good.


“I suppose there’s some logic to that from a marketing point of view, but I worry about alienating the fans and the readers who have been with this franchise for however long it’s been, because it’s a large group and they’re very loyal.”


Tarkin hits the shelves on November 4. Keep your eyes peeled for an advance review of the novel from yours truly in a few weeks.


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Grant has been a fan of Star Wars for as long as he can remember, having seen every movie on the big screen. When he’s not hard at work with his college studies, he keeps himself busy by reporting on all kinds of Star Wars news for SWNN and general movie news on the sister site, Movie News Net. He served as a frequent commentator on SWNN’s The Resistance Broadcast.

Grant Davis (Pomojema)

Grant has been a fan of Star Wars for as long as he can remember, having seen every movie on the big screen. When he’s not hard at work with his college studies, he keeps himself busy by reporting on all kinds of Star Wars news for SWNN and general movie news on the sister site, Movie News Net. He served as a frequent commentator on SWNN’s The Resistance Broadcast.

23 thoughts on “Star Wars Tarkin Has an Opening Crawl, Author James Luceno Talks About New Canon.

  • October 6, 2014 at 4:50 pm

    tagged as ‘cannon’..nice

  • October 6, 2014 at 5:02 pm

    the opening crawl text feels a little forced (and that’s forced in a bad way). ‘Just feels “off”. That aside this looks like a good story and a fresh interesting way to tackle the late prequel period.
    I always felt that Grand Moff Tarkin was the most underrated Star Wars character, i mean he successfully told Vader to shut up, and Vader was cool with that! What is it about Tarkin that got him that much street-cred’??
    Also remember when he was asking Leia for the rebel base? Well if you recall, leia is so afraid of him that she actually backs UP AGAINST LORD VADER for a second.
    There is defintiely something about this guy that’s really messed up, if he is more repulsive than a friggin’ sith lord.

    • October 6, 2014 at 8:08 pm

      It’s because the first and last paragraphs are too fuckin long. Also, saying shit like “standard years” in the crawl is gay.

    • October 6, 2014 at 10:59 pm

      Tarkin’s relationship with Anakin was pretty interesting in TCW, They agreed in many things about the war, they respect each other.

    • October 8, 2014 at 10:17 am

      It was his slippers. She just couldn’t deal with the slippers.

  • October 6, 2014 at 5:40 pm

    Should read “the dreaded order 66” it’s missing “the” and the crawl is written too causual, like conversational. 5 standard years sounds “off” right away. Why can’t creative people just feel what is right about a series? It’s like branding- if Nike started writing “just did it” it would feel like a cheap market tshirt, and the brand team know it’s not right- so how come starwars gets flunky writing?

  • October 6, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    I think it’s kinda cool that the author took Peter Cushing’s earlier works as an actor to go deeper into Tarkin’s character.

    For sure gonna check it out !m!

  • October 6, 2014 at 6:56 pm

    Luceno is a good author so I’m sure he’ll do a fine job. It’s nice to hear that someone cares about us longtime fans as well. It sounds like him and Zahn are on the same page as far as “writing around” the old EU rather than overwriting.

    • October 6, 2014 at 9:16 pm

      I’ve never been particularity fond of Luceno, but I agree, Tarkin looks like it’ll be a good read. And it’s always nice to know the authors still care about there fans.

  • October 6, 2014 at 7:13 pm

    Hey I don’t wanna jump way ahead of myself here but has anyone else noticed a slight familiarity of the facial structure between Adam Driver and Peter Cushing? Just a thought….

    • October 6, 2014 at 9:14 pm

      I think Adam Driver looks more like Reinhard Heydrich. If he is indeed a villain, probably the look that they wanted, given the many similarities between the Empire and the Nazis.

    • October 6, 2014 at 10:29 pm

      Good catch!

    • October 6, 2014 at 10:43 pm

      Yeah! Driver looks like a chip off the old Moff, all right.

  • October 6, 2014 at 9:25 pm

    The write around the EU thing has so many causes for confusion its not even funny. This convenient for writers who use cliched plot techniques such those used in modern Marvel Comic books not the movies.

    Marvel can’t even write a cohesive crossover event without there being some sort of contradiction or continuity error involved. The titles they will publish for Darth Vader and Princess Leia will read like a bullet ridden vest. They are like the NFL, only interested in money. Quantity rules, not quality.

    • October 8, 2014 at 12:17 am

      They’re fine, though. If it fails, they reboot it, as always.

  • October 6, 2014 at 10:43 pm

    According to half the trolls on YT, nobody reads Star Wars books anyways..

    • October 6, 2014 at 10:50 pm

      > YouTube Comments.

      There’s your problem.

  • October 6, 2014 at 11:05 pm

    I like how he seems to respect and care about fans of the old EU. I wasn’t planning on reading anymore star wars novels after everything but I might check this one out.

  • October 6, 2014 at 11:13 pm

    It’s a shame Disney doesn’t give a shit about the brazilian fans. They don’t talk about anything here in Brazil. The books and comics(I hope they’ll release the new ones because some publishing houses are publishing some EU stories) are very rare to see. Especially the books, a few of the dozens from the EU were published here in Brazil, recently just that especial book, the Book of the Sith and Jedi Path.

    We don’t know when and/or if the new books: A New Dawn, this one, Tarkin, Lords of the Sith and the other ones will come to the country in portuguese version.

  • October 7, 2014 at 4:25 am

    Nice to see one of my fav writers discuss the eu fans and he shows some real respect. wish the idiots at disney would take note. instead of force feeding us rebels as canon…..blahhhhh

  • October 7, 2014 at 6:53 am

    Yeah, this book looks more interesting and Lucasian than the Rebels show. The lightsaber effect they’re applying in that one featurette is cool though.

    • October 8, 2014 at 10:19 am

      Luke wasn’t Asian.

  • October 7, 2014 at 5:45 pm

    You’re really going to use the term ‘Lucasian’ after the prequels?

Comments are closed.