Snoke, Kylo Ren, Rey, and Rose to Star in Marvel’s Age of Resistance – First Look

StarWars.com

Marvel’s Age of Resistance miniseries — following the popular Age of Republic and Age of Rebellion — kicks off next month, with each issue shining a light on icons of the Resistance and First Order. StarWars.com is excited to reveal four stunning covers by Phil Noto for some of the series’ most eagerly anticipated installments, coming in September: Age of Resistance – Rose Tico #1, Age of Resistance – Supreme Leader Snoke #1, Age of Resistance – Rey #1, and Age of Resistance – Kylo Ren #1. Get a first look below, along with official descriptions of the stories within — which promise new revelations on everything from Kylo Ren’s first days as a dark side apprentice to Rey’s time with Leia.

Age of Resistance - Rose Tico #1 cover

Star Wars: Age of Resistance – Rose Tico #1 (on sale September 4)
“My Hero”
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Ramon Rosanas
Cover: Phil Noto

Sisters. Friends. Co-pilots. Growing up, Rose and Paige Tico were everything to each other. Until the First Order tore their world apart. See the bond between Rose and Paige before it was forever broken.

Age of Resistance - Supreme Leader Snoke #1 cover

Star Wars: Age of Resistance – Supreme Leader Snoke #1 (on sale September 11)
“The Devil’s Apprentice!”
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Leonard Kirk
Cover: Phil Noto

Supreme Leader Snoke’s brutal training of Kylo Ren begins. Will the sadistic Snoke break his tormented protégé? Or has he underestimated the son of Han and Leia?

Age of Resistance - Rey #1 cover

Star Wars: Age of Resistance – Rey #1 (on sale September 18)
“Search for Skywalker”
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Ramon Rosanas
Cover: Phil Noto

After Han Solo’s fall, Rey searched for Luke Skywalker. But before Luke, there was Leia. Witness never-before-seen moments between Rey and General Organa. What will Rey, Chewbacca and R2-D2 encounter on the way to find Leia’s missing brother?

Age of Resistance - Kylo Ren #1 cover

Star Wars: Age of Resistance – Kylo Ren #1 (on sale September 25)
“A Dynasty of Doom!”
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Leonard Kirk
Cover: Phil Noto

Anakin Skywalker casts a long shadow. Can Kylo Ren ever escape his infamous grandfather’s reputation? Or will he succeed where Darth Vader failed?

See this comic book news and more on this week’s installment of The Star Wars Show!

StarWars.com. All Star Wars, all the time.

Snoke, Kylo Ren, Rey, and Rose to Star in Marvel’s Age of Resistance – First Look

Marvel’s Star Wars Begins a New Era with Issue 68 – First Look

StarWars.com

“The evil lord Darth Vader, obsessed with finding young Skywalker, has dispatched thousands of remote probes into the far reaches of space…”

Star Wars #68, coming July 10, will see the creative team of writer Greg Pak (Planet Hulk) and artist Phil Noto (Poe Dameron, StarWars.com’s Solo: A Star Wars Story Blu-ray cover art) take the reins, kicking off a new era for the series.

And its story takes place just before the events of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back.

Beginning with issue 68, which opens the “Rebels and Rogues!” arc, we’ll find out what happens prior to Vader launching his hunt for Luke Skywalker. The story finds Luke and his friends launching a desperate mission to keep the Empire from finding the new rebel base, and sees our heroes off on a three-pronged attack: Han and Leia go undercover in a noir world of romance and danger, Luke and Artoo face off against the Executor in a single X-wing, and Chewie and Threepio (as unlikely a Star Wars duo as can be) team up for their own adventure. “Dream come true,” Pak said at Star Wars Celebration Chicago. “I’m trying to write the Star Wars movie that I’d want to see.”

StarWars.com is excited to present a first look at pages from Star Wars #68 below!

Star Wars #68 cover with Chewbacca and C-3PO.

Star Wars #68 page with a Star Destroyer launching probe droids.

Star Wars #68 page with Han, Luke, Leia, and Chewie on a rebel ship.

Star Wars #68 page with Chewbacca and C-3PO teaming up.

Star Wars #68 page with Luke and R2-D2 outside their X-wing.

Star Wars #68 page with Han and Leia undercover.

StarWars.com. All Star Wars, all the time.

Site tags: #StarWarsBlog

Marvel’s Star Wars Begins a New Era with Issue 68 – First Look

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order – Dark Temple, a Prequel Comic to the Game, Is Coming This September

StarWars.com

In a story set prior to the events of the upcoming video game Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, two Jedi will find themselves in a battle for their lives.

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order – Dark Temple, a five-issue Marvel miniseries that will lead into the highly-anticipated game from Respawn Entertainment and Lucasfilm, was revealed today. Written by Matthew Rosenberg (Uncanny X-Men and The Punisher) and illustrated by Paolo Villanelli (Vader: Dark Visions), the tale follows Jedi Master Eno Cordova and his impulsive Padawan Cere Junda — on a seemingly simple mission that becomes much more dangerous. The Jedi Council sends the pair to the remote planet Ontotho to oversee the excavation of a mysterious temple; on Ontotho, dueling forces of local resistance and ruthless security troops clash in a war for the fate of the planet, with the Jedi caught in the middle. Get a first look at the cover below!

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order #1 cover

“Working on the Jedi: Fallen Order comic has been a great experience,” Rosenberg tells StarWars.com. “Respawn and Lucasfilm are not only creating one of the most exciting video games in a long, long time, but they’re also telling a truly epic Star Wars story. So having the chance to introduce audiences to some of the game’s cast, and explore a bit of who they are and how they got where they are is really fun. Cere Junda and Eno Cordova are a pair of Jedi that fans are definitely going to want to know more about, and this comic will tell you part of their story you won’t get anywhere else.”

“What’s more fun than working on a new Star Wars book?” says Villanelli. “Well, the answer is working on a new Star Wars book exploring a completely new part of the franchise. As a video game lover I was super excited to be part of the new Fallen Order game, and as an artist I was thrilled to explore and create a part of it for the comics. Besides our titular heroes Cere and Eno, we’ll get a chance to show new planets, villains, and some good old lightsaber action.”

Dark Temple, developed in collaboration with Respawn Entertainment and Lucasfilm, kicks off with issue #1 in September. Featuring Cere, a major figure from the game along with more elements from the forthcoming action-adventure, the series promises to enrich the experience of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order arrives November 15 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC, and is available for pre-order.

Stay tuned to StarWars.com for more on all things Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.

StarWars.com. All Star Wars, all the time.

Site tags: #StarWarsBlog

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order – Dark Temple, a Prequel Comic to the Game, Is Coming This September

Climb Into the Cockpit of Alphabet Squadron with Author Alexander Freed

StarWars.com

The members of Alphabet Squadron are reporting for duty. The first novel of a trilogy that brings us back to the galaxy mere days after the destruction of the second Death Star, in its pages we meet some unique and not-entirely-trustworthy pilots who just might hold the fate of the New Republic in their hands.

There’s Yrica Quell, an Imperial defector who can’t completely escape her past; Chass na Chadic, a B-wing pilot has seen her entire squadron destroyed twice; Wyl Lark, a veteran inside an A-wing cockpit who just wants to go home; the roguish Nath Tensent, who also outlasted his squadron; and Kairos, a silent U-wing pilot clad all in black with a mask that hides her every expression. Together the ragtag group of pilots must take on one of the New Republic’s biggest threats, the Imperial TIE squadron Shadow Wing — an elite group of pilots that Quell belonged to before she switched sides.

To celebrate the release of the book today, StarWars.com climbed into the cockpit with author Alexander Freed to get some readings on the members of Alphabet Squadron, details on how the novel ties in to other Star Wars stories, and more.

Note: This interview does not contain detailed spoilers regarding the plot of Alphabet Squadron, but it does shed light on its characters. Fly carefully!

Quell from Alphabet Squadron

Quell

StarWars.com: When we first meet Yrica Quell, it’s difficult for the New Republic to determine which side she’s on. Why do you feel that the story of a former Imperial, someone who’s very late to the Rebellion, is a meaningful one to tell?

Alexander Freed: No one doubts that Emperor Palpatine was an evil man who needed to be deposed. But he was willingly served by millions of Imperial citizens — some true believers and some not — who were, in their way, complicit in the Empire’s crimes.

One of the first questions the New Republic has to face is what to do with all those ex-Imperials. Do you imprison them all? Put them on trial? Give them a second chance? It’s a hard question without an easy answer, and Quell is right in the thick of it. She is, as you say, very late to the Rebellion. But is she too late to absolve herself? Too late to become a hero? And if she is too late to set things right…what does she do next?

I’ve got plenty of thoughts about how these questions relate to life in the modern world, but I’ll let readers debate that themselves. Fundamentally, though, I think Star Wars works best when it’s full of both characters we can aspire to be like…and characters who may be flawed, and whose failures we can empathize with.

Kairos from Alphabet Squadron
Chas from Alphabet Squadron

StarWars.com: Chass loves to blast music in the cockpit of her B-wing. How did you arrive at this particular character trait?

Alexander Freed: We see (and hear) lots of music in the Star Wars films — cantina bands, Ewok celebrations, Coruscant opera companies — but we rarely see characters talking about it! I try to make sure my characters have interests beyond what’s immediately plot relevant, and it seemed a nice way to give her texture.

I don’t recommend listening to music at full volume while flying a starfighter, by the way. But Chass has never been the most disciplined pilot.

StarWars.com: We’ve seen a few dark figures wearing a mask in Star Wars, but none on the Rebellion’s side, until we meet Kairos. How challenging is it to make a character with no expressions and almost no voice feel like part of the story?

Alexander Freed: The funny thing is, it’s not hard at all. Because Kairos tends to lurk quietly in the background, it means every time she steps into the spotlight it’s immediately clear that she’s up to something important.

And, of course, unlike in a film, we can also dip into her head on occasion and get an entirely different perspective on the action.

Wyl from Alphabet Squadron
Nath from Alphabet Squadron

StarWars.com: Alphabet Squadron has a major tie-in to the story of Star Wars Battlefront II with Operation: Cinder and its red-robed messengers. Why did you want to bridge these stories?

Alexander Freed: I first encountered Operation: Cinder in Greg Rucka’s Shattered Empire comic books, and thought it was a fantastic concept — the notion that the Emperor would order acts of terror and devastation after his death felt utterly appropriate for a wicked narcissist like Palpatine. But neither Shattered Empire nor Battlefront II really had space to dig into what significance Cinder had for the galaxy at large, and I wanted to take advantage of the space a novel provides to explore the subject in more depth.

StarWars.com: Speaking of connections to other stories, there’s also a shared character with Jody Houser’s TIE Fighter comic series, Commander Nuress. How did you collaborate together on the two books?

Alexander Freed: Carefully! We wanted TIE Fighter and Alphabet Squadron to be complementary works, so a reader could pick up either and feel satisfied but also feel like reading both rewarded them with a broader view of our corner of the galaxy.

Jody and I wrote lengthy emails to one another looking for places to intertwine the comic and novel while also working very hard to give one another enough space to not be creatively “boxed in.”

StarWars.com: Were there any particular space battles from the films that inspired you when writing your own?

Alexander Freed: All of them in their way, of course, but the battle over Scarif at the end of Rogue One is beautiful in how many elements it puts into play and adeptly juggles. Starfighters! Rebel capital ships! Imperial capital ships! Bombing runs! Ramming attacks! Space stations! Energy shields! It encapsulates so much of what’s viscerally thrilling about Star Wars space combat.

Star Wars: Alphabet Squadron cover.

StarWars.com: Although this isn’t your first Star Wars novel, you’ll be making a huge impact on the universe with three books to tell this story. What does it feel like to be a part of the growing story of Star Wars?

Alexander Freed: Between video games, comics, and novels, I’ve been dipping in and out of the Star Wars galaxy for well over a decade now. I feel pretty comfortable here! But Alphabet Squadron is my first time working post-Return of the Jedi, and that’s exciting for me — there’s so much to say about a society where the underdogs have finally won and need to figure out how to rebuild.

On top of that, having three books to work with is an enormous privilege — I haven’t been part of a Star Wars story of this scope since Star Wars: The Old Republic, and I’m doing my best to use all that room as effectively as possible.

StarWars.com: Finally, if Chass listened to the music of our galaxy, which songs or artists do you think would be on her cockpit playlist?

Alexander Freed: A lot of Chass’s music collection is inspired by songs from the real world, but I dare not give specifics! It’s safe to say that her tastes are eclectic and that she’s (let’s be honest) not overly choosy. I imagine she would scoop up lots of obscure reggae and punk, some mainstream pop hits in a variety of languages, a smattering of rap albums, techno club remixes of all the above, the occasional novelty tune, and whatever else she could get her hands on.

My real hope is that some enterprising fans compile a Chass playlist or two. I’d much rather see other folks’ interpretations than inflict mine on the world!

Alphabet Squadron is available now.

Kelly Knox is a Seattle-area freelance writer who loves creating Star Wars crafts with her daughter. Follow her on Twitter at @kelly_knox.

Site tags: #StarWarsBlog

Climb Into the Cockpit of Alphabet Squadron with Author Alexander Freed

My Star Wars Adventures Writing Adventure

StarWars.com

Swatting air with an imaginary lightsaber or putting my well-worn action figures through the paces in the playground sandbox rank among my earliest Star Wars memories.

Fast forward several decades, and my playtime continues, this time as a newbie Star Wars creator. Today will see the release of IDW’s Star Wars Adventures #22, containing my original story “A Tauntaun Tail.”

To say I’m breathing heavier than Vader after a 5K would be an understatement. Yes, excitement abounds. The privilege of penning a Star Wars yarn proves to be equal parts amazing, surreal, exciting, and as intimidating as staring down a Sith. And I’ve taken some time to reflect on the journey here.

Star Wars Adventures #22 cover

Having a Star Wars Adventure

Long before scoring the incredible opportunity to write for Star Wars Adventures, I found myself devouring issue after issue. The fast-paced action, quippy humor and vibrant color palette pulled me in like a tractor beam, and I soon realized why. Although it’s an all-ages title, its creative team skews Star Wars Adventures toward the eight- to 12-year-old set. I occupied that same demographic when I first fell for Star Wars. Star Wars Adventures knows how to tap into my wide-eyed, inner child, and elicit all those warm and fuzzy feels I felt as a young Padawan. Writing for Star Wars Adventures allows me to channel that same fan boy wonderment onto comic book pages. And I’ve never had so much fun.

An Empire state of mind

Like many die-hard fans, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back may be my favorite saga flick. When given the assignment of pitching a story set during the original trilogy, my mind quickly headed toward Empire, landing on the frosty expanse of the planet Hoth. From snow-stomping AT-ATs to a one-armed wampa, Hoth plays host to some of the movie’s most memorable moments. So I began crafting a story set amid its iconic tundra, and “A Tauntan Tail” was born.

A page from Star Wars Adventures #22, in which a tauntaun is shunned from its pack for having a long tail.

An unlikely hero

The Star Wars canon has a rich history of unlikely heroes beating the odds and rising to the occasion, be it a Tatooine farmboy or a Jakku scavenger. With that theme in mind, I wanted to tell another kind of inspirational story, one that celebrates how we can use our unique traits in surprising ways. “A Tauntaun Tail” is the story of a tauntaun who’s shunned from her pack for having an extra-long tail. However, a young rebel soldier sees something special in the animal’s individuality, and helps the creature become an unexpected hero. One of my own real-life heroes is my son, Max. Despite being born with dwarfism, he continues standing tall, letting nothing get in his way. So when time came to name the rebel soldier character in “A Tauntaun Tail,” I thought Sgt. Maxim had an appropriate ring.

Artist extraordinare, Tony Fleecs

After the script received approval, the Star Wars Adventures editorial team at IDW paired the story with an artist. As a fan of the title, my anticipation built as I wondered which of the immensely talented stable of artists would be working on “A Tauntaun Tail.” I would soon learn that craftsman would be Tony Fleecs, whose work I absolutely love. The comic scriptwriting process finds the writer describing the action and the scene, providing the dialogue, and denoting how many panels appear on each page. It’s then up to the artist to interpret that information and create the finished product. For example, it’s easy for me to say page four has five panels of specific content. Tony, however, has the task of laying out all of the action in those five panels as he sees fit, presenting it on the page in a way that flows dynamically and helps tell the story. Amazingly, Tony seems to have the inherent ability to translate my descriptions perfectly and visually breathe life into the images I have in my head. I was blown away.

The dream-come-true playdate of writing “A Tauntaun Tail” for Star Wars Adventures was indeed mind-blowing, enlightening, and an absolute honor. Holding the tangible issue in hand will be the perfect ending to the endeavor.

Star Wars Adventures #22 is available now.

Jon Waterhouse is an award-winning journalist, radio show host, and performer whose byline has appeared in a variety of print and online publications including EsquireBlackBook, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and on MTV.com. He helms the geek travel blog NerdsOnHoliday.com.

My Star Wars Adventures Writing Adventure

Starfighters Get an Upgrade in Alphabet Squadron – Exclusive Excerpt

StarWars.com

Yrica Quell, once an Imperial pilot, never expected to be the leader of a rebel unit. But here she is.

In Star Wars: Alphabet Squadron, the new novel by Alexander Freed coming June 11, Quell runs the titular ragtag group — consisting of an A-wing, B-wing, X-wing, Y-wing, and U-wing. With the Emperor dead, the five members of Alphabet are tasked by New Republic general Hera Syndulla herself to track down and destroy the mysterious Shadow Wing, a lethal force of TIE fighters exacting bloody, reckless vengeance in the twilight of their reign. The new, eclectic crew must face this challenge — and their own inner demons — as they struggle to find their place in a changing galaxy, while learning to work together.

In this exclusive excerpt from Alphabet Squadron, the team is summoned by Quell, only to find their precious craft have received a special modification…

Star Wars: Alphabet Squadron cover.

Nath hadn’t slept more than five hours. The latest mission—a raid on an Imperial outpost caught relaying messages to Pandem Nai—had gone too well not to celebrate, and he’d spent until the wee hours in the Krayt Hut comparing notes on Y-wing repair with Hail Squadron. He didn’t much like the Hail Squadron pilots—to a person, they seemed much too proud of landing a spot aboard Syndulla’s flagship—but Nath might need them down the line. Humbly accepting a few accolades and acting friendly seemed worth the time.

But he hadn’t been expecting a wake-up call from Quell and orders to head down to the hangar at an unnatural hour, and he clearly wasn’t the only one: Chass’s eyes were bloodshot as she marched down the corridor, and even Wyl didn’t look fresh. Only Kairos seemed unperturbed.

Thing probably doesn’t even sleep, Nath thought with a mix of annoyance and admiration.

“They can win,” Chass muttered. “The Empire can win. Shadow Wing can win. Don’t make me fly this early.”

“Reasonable compromise,” Nath said as they strolled into the bay.

Quell was waiting in her flight suit. She offered a curt nod toward the group and jutted a thumb behind her at the rows of fighters. “Got word there’s an admiral coming today. He’ll be doing a full inspection of the Lodestar and its complement. Give your ships a walkaround, check your cockpits, don’t embarrass me. Understood?”

In other words, Nath thought, hide anything you can hide and clean up your mess.

Wyl mumbled a “yes, ma’am,” though Nath felt the boy must have been sarcastic. Chass paused, seemed on the verge of marching out, then lurched forward like something was dragging her by puppet strings. Nath eyed Quell, who shrugged at him as the others moved on.

Before Nath could follow, he heard Wyl’s laugh—a swift bark—followed by Chass swearing. Puzzled, he sauntered past the Meteor Squadron X-wings and came into view of the rear of his ship. His Y-wing sat there, scratched as always but scrubbed and polished like it was fresh from the factory.

He walked slowly around the vessel. His eyes widened. He must have looked absurd, he knew, but it was his ship—his ship. Someone had touched his ship and painted a crest on the gleaming metal depicting five vessels—an A-wing, B-wing, X-wing, Y-wing, and U-wing. Above the crest, a banner read: Alphabet Squadron.

He looked to his comrades. Each stared at his or her own vessel; each ship had been similarly branded. Chass went from swearing to laughing loudly, while Wyl turned around to look over at Quell. Kairos gazed at the U-wing’s markings as if transfixed—she extended a hand and touched the paint gingerly, like it was something ancient prone to crumble in the light.

“You do this to my ship?” Nath called toward Quell.

“Do I look like I can paint?” Quell asked, voice humorless.

“Don’t do it again,” Nath said, but he was smirking despite himself.

“It’s fantastic,” Wyl said. “Thank you.”

“There’s something else,” Quell said, and she strolled down the central aisle between fighters. Kairos stepped away from the U-wing reluctantly. “Thought I’d show you, while we’re at it.”

When her audience was gathered together, Quell tugged up the sleeve of her flight suit and rotated her arm. Stenciled into the irritated flesh of her biceps was a tattoo: the same squadron crest that now adorned the ships.

“In case I get stranded planetside,” Quell said. “They’ll know where to send me.”

“That they will,” Nath said.

“You’re a freak,” Chass added.

“I’m also your commanding officer,” Quell said. Chass shrugged.

“Still a freak.”

They were all smiling. Chass and Wyl continued ribbing Quell, and Nath complained about the early hour. But he could see what she’d done and he respected the effort. Maybe she couldn’t bond with her team like Nath had with his squadron, but Quell had managed to bring the team to her.

It wasn’t a bad outcome. Whatever Nath’s issues with Quell, he hoped she would keep them all alive.

“Time for breakfast,” Wyl said. “You coming with us, Lieutenant?”

“Not this time,” Quell said. “But thank you.”

Nath laughed and waved Wyl and Chass to follow him. Yrica Quell. You’re still Imperial at heart, he thought, but he didn’t spoil the moment.

Part of a crossover with Marvel’s TIE Fighter series, Star Wars: Alphabet Squadron is available for pre-order now.

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Site tags: #StarWarsBlog

Starfighters Get an Upgrade in Alphabet Squadron – Exclusive Excerpt

Jody Houser Takes Comics Readers to the Age of Republic and Beyond

StarWars.com

Dooku’s lightsaber flashes then sparks as it strikes Yoda’s green blade. There’s another dazzling light display, however, as the blade in Dooku’s hand radiates a blinding…blue? Padawans eagerly crowd around heroic Masters Dooku and Yoda, eager to catch a glimpse of their dueling demonstration at the Jedi Temple.

This is a scene from Count Dooku’s rarely seen past that you’ll only find in the Star Wars: Age of Republic series written by Jody Houser, who is a master at revealing the histories of some of your favorite Star Wars characters in the pages of Marvel Comics.

This May, two collected editions of the prequel era comic series Age of Republic hit comic book stores everywhere. Divided into one-shots starring heroes Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Padmé Amidala, and Qui-Gon Jinn, and villains Darth Maul, Count Dooku, Jango Fett, and General Grievous, writer Jody Houser gave each of these characters their own well-earned time in the spotlight in brand-new stories.

With her mind set firmly in the Republic era of Star Wars — the writer re-watched the prequels, most of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, and read massive amounts of Marvel comics starring the characters in preparation — Houser began to tell the stories of those now iconic characters from their own certain points of view. From Qui-Gon Jinn questioning his path as a Jedi, to Anakin Skywalker struggling with the brutalities of war, to General Grievous facing his past in the depths of a Jedi temple, each issue left readers wanting to spend even more time with the characters as new insights about their own innermost thoughts and challenges were revealed.

Age of Republic: Obi-Wan Kenobi cover.

Age of Republic: Obi-Wan Kenobi - Anakin and Obi-Wan talk in a starship.

“I think writing an Obi-Wan who was unsure of himself was probably the most surprising,” Houser reveals. “He’s the first Jedi Master we ever met, and it’s hard not to think of him as that wise old man leading us into a bigger world.”

Padmé Amidala is another Star Wars character in particular that she has strong feelings about. “I see her having watched the Republic she worked and fought her whole life for fall so easily, knowing that this was the galaxy she was bringing children into, as the actual heartbreak,” she reflects. “Anakin and everything he did was a symptom of the larger problem.”

Age of Republic: Count Dooku cover.

Age of Republic: Count Dooku page.

Of course, the villains of Star Wars are just as compelling as the heroes. Count Dooku remains an enigmatic character — perhaps we’ll get to know him better in the upcoming audiobook Dooku: Jedi Lost from writer Cavan Scott — and his Age of Republic story is probably the most up close and personal fans of the prequels have been with the former Jedi thus far.

“I think the most fascinating thing about Dooku is how far into his fall he still held the Jedi’s trust,” Houser tells us. “Whether that implies a duality to him or a fatal flaw of the Jedi (or both) was what I really wanted to examine in his story.”

Thanks to her contributions to the galaxy far, far away with the Age of Republic comics, she says, watching the prequel films again has been an entirely new experience. “I’ve watched Episode I and Episode II with friends since I wrote the issues, and I have to be careful not to say ‘I wrote them/that scene/explained that’ every five minutes.”

Star Wars: TIE Fighter cover by Marvel.

As for Houser’s current comic project, the five-issue series Star Wars: TIE Fighter, she shifted her focus to a new era for her Star Wars work. “[TIE Fighter] is concurrent with Return of the Jedi, so having such huge existing set pieces to build the story and timeline around made it easier.”

A tie-in series to the upcoming novel Alphabet Squadron, a new book by author Alexander Freed which launches a trilogy focusing on the pilots of the Empire, StarWars.com couldn’t resist asking where TIE Fighter might take Shadow Wing. “There will be a familiar face among them,” Houser teases.

All Age of Republic single issues are out now, and the collected editions Age of Republic – Heroes and Age of Republic – Villains will both be available this May.

Kelly Knox is a Seattle-based freelance writer who loves creating Star Wars crafts with her daughter. Follow her on Twitter at @kelly_knox.

Site tags: #StarWarsBlog

Jody Houser Takes Comics Readers to the Age of Republic and Beyond

Lucasfilm Unveils Complete ‘Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker‘ Publishing Program – Exclusive

StarWars.com

A galaxy of stories leading to the final film in the Skywalkwer saga is on the way.

In celebration of Star Wars Day, StarWars.com is thrilled to reveal “Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” a series of books and comics connected to the highly-anticipated movie.

“The Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker publishing program is our biggest and boldest film tie-in program yet,” Michael Siglain, Lucasfilm’s creative director of publishing, tells StarWars.com. “We’ve got exceptionally talented authors, artists, and publishers creating content for fans of all ages.

“While these titles will include some hints and Easter eggs for the new film, the majority of these titles will feature all-new stories set following the events of Star Wars: The Last Jedi.  Our ‘Journey to’ books and comics will star Rey, Finn, Poe, Rose, and, of course, Leia, Chewie, the droids, and the First Order.

“Here, you’ll get a glimpse at both the state of the galaxy and some of the ongoing battles between the Resistance and the First Order.

“As fans prepare for The Rise of Skywalker and the epic conclusion to the Skywalker saga, these stories are not to be missed.”

Pre-orders for the line launch early next week. Until then, check out covers, descriptions, and release dates for every title below — and happy Star Wars Day!

 

Adult & Young Adult Fiction

REsistance Reborn cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: Resistance Reborn

Publisher: Del Rey
Author: Rebecca Roanhorse
Format: Adult novel
Description: In this Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker novel, Poe Dameron, General Leia Organa, Rey, and Finn must struggle to rebuild the Resistance after their defeat at the hands of the First Order in Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
On-sale: 11/12/2019

Force Collector cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: Force Collector

Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
Author: Kevin Shinick
Format: Young Adult novel
Description: In this Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker young adult novel set just before The Force Awakens, a restless teenager sets out to discover what connection his mysterious Force powers have to the fabled Jedi and what the Force has in store for him.
On-sale: 11/19/2019

Star Wars Allegiance cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: Allegiance

Publisher: Marvel Comics
Author: Ethan Sacks
Artist: Luke Ross
Format: Comic mini-series
Description: On the run since the destruction of the Starkiller Base, General Leia and the remaining handful of Resistance have barely managed to survive, much less strike back against the superior forces of the First Order. Running low on options, Leia decides to reach out to her former allies, the Mon Calamari, whose shipyards once powered the Rebel Alliance.
On-sale: #1: 10/9/2019; #2: 10/16/2019; #3: 10/23/2019; #4: 10/30/2019

 

Kids & Tween Fiction

We are the Resistance cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: We are the Resistance

Publisher: Random House Kids
Author: Elizabeth Schaefer
Illustrator: Alan Baston
Format: Little Golden Book
Description: Join Leia, Rey, Finn, Poe, Chewbacca, Rose, BB-8 and all the brave heroes of the Resistance in their fight against the First Order! Featuring stunning retro-stylized illustrations, this book includes iconic scenes from The Force Awakens, The Last Jedi, and The Rise of Skywalker.
On-sale: 10/4/2019

Resistance Heroes cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker – Resistance Heroes

Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
Author: Michael Siglain
Illustrator: Diogo Saito & Luigi Aimé
Format: Level 2 Reader with stickers
Description: Meet Rey, Finn, Poe and the rest of heroes of the Resistance who are fighting to save the save the galaxy from the evil First Order.
On-sale: 10/4/2019

First Order Villains cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker – First Order Villains

Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
Author: Michael Siglain
Illustrator: Diogo Saito & Luigi Aimé On-Sale: 10/4/2019
Format: Level 2 Reader with stickers
Description: Meet the sinister Kylo Ren and the rest of the vile villains of the fearsome First Order from Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
On-sale: 10/4/2019

Choose Your Destiny: A Finn & Poe Adventure cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: Choose Your Destiny: A Finn & Poe Adventure

Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
Author: Cavan Scott
Illustrator: Elsa Charretier
Format: Chapter Book
Description: Join Finn, Poe, and BB-8 on a dangerous-but-necessary mission for the struggling Resistance. With over twenty possible outcomes, readers will have to choose to carefully in order to keep Finn, Poe, and BB-8 safe from the evil First Order.
On-sale: 10/4/2019

Spark of Resistance cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: Spark of the Resistance

Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
Author: Justina Ireland
Illustrator: Phil Noto
Format: Middle Grade novel
Description: When a distress plea goes up from the isolated planet Minfar, Resistance heroes Rey, Poe, and Rose hear the call! Together they will face down a First Order battalion, terrifying flying creatures, and a weapon that could change the course of the war!
On-sale: 10/4/2019

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker IDW comic temp cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: Star Wars Adventures

Publisher: IDW Publishing
Author: John Barber, Michael Moreci
Artist: Derek Charm, Tony Fleecs
Format: Kids comic
Description: In a series of original stories, the mighty Wookiees of Kashyyyk must defend their home against the armies of the evil First Order. Plus, R2-D2, C-3PO, and BB-8 team-up on a top-secret spy adventure for the Resistance.
On-sale: #27: October 2019; #28: November 2019; #29: December 2019

 

Adult & Young Adult Non-Fiction

Ultimate Star Wars: New Edition cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: The Ultimate Star Wars – New Edition

Publisher: DK
Authors: Adam Bray, Cole Horton, Tricia Barr, Ryder Windham; foreword by Anthony Daniels
Format: Reference
Description: This fully updated, comprehensive, and detailed encyclopedia explores the characters, creatures, locations, vehicles, and technology found throughout the entire Star Wars galaxy. Ultimate Star Wars New Edition is an in-depth visual guide packed full of exhaustive information about Star Wars, including The Last Jedi, Solo: A Star Wars Story, and Star Wars: Resistance and a sneak peek at Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
On-sale: 10/4/2019

 

Kids & Tween Non-Fiction

Rise of Skywalker Ultimate Sticker Collection cover

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: Amazing Sticker Adventure

Publisher: DK
Author: David Fentiman
Format: Sticker book
Description: This 72-page sticker book includes more than 500 stickers of characters, locations, vehicles and props. Featuring all-new content from the highly anticipated film, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker!
On-sale: 10/14/2019

The Moviemaking Magic of Star Wars Ships and Battles cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: The Moviemaking Magic of Ships and Battles

Publisher: Abrams
Author: Landry Walker
Art & Photography: Lucasfilm & Industrial Light & Magic
Format: BTS hardcover
Description: Go behind the scenes of the biggest movie franchise of all time in this immersive and interactive book to see how the most iconic vehicles in the galaxy—from the Millennium Falcon to X-wings and TIE fighters to AT-ATs and the Death Star—were created and used in the films of the Star Wars saga. This collectible book includes special interactive elements, including six-page booklets, accordion folds, and flaps that reveal the magic behind the movies with concept sketches, molds, digital imagery and more! Plus, get a sneak peek at some of the vehicles from Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker!
On-sale: 12/3/2019

 

Adult & Kids Novelty

Star Wars Ultimate Pop-Up Galaxy cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker – Star Wars: The Ultimate Pop-up Galaxy

Publisher: Insight Editions
Author and Pop-up Engineer: Matthew Reinhart
Illustrator: Kevin M. Wilson
Format: Deluxe Pop-Up book
Description: Presented in a dynamic 360-degree format that enables the action to be viewed from all sides, the book also opens up to form a displayable 3D diorama of the entire saga. Packed with amazing Star Wars moments and hidden surprises to discover, Star Wars: The Ultimate Pop-Up Galaxy represents a whole new level of sophistication and interactivity in pop-up books and is guaranteed to thrill fans of all ages. Matthew is the King of Paper Engineering and returns to the franchise with this new, deluxe pop-up.
On-sale: 10/8/2019

The Resistance book cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: The Resistance 

Publisher: Readerlink/Studio Fun
Author: Sally Little
Illustrator: Pilot Studio & PowerStation
Format: Sound Book
Description: Follow the rise of the Resistance with this six-button sound book featuring story moments, lines of dialogue, sound effects, and a light-up lightsaber sound module.
On-sale: 10/4/2019

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker magnetic playset cover

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Magnetic Playset

Publisher: Readerlink/Studio Fun
Author: Sally Little
Illustrators: Diogo Saito & Luigi Aimé
Format: Magnetic Playset
Description: Create your own amazing scenes from Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker! This handy carrying case includes over 20 magnets, six play scenes, as well as a coloring & activity book featuring all of the characters from the film.
On-sale: 10/4/2019

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Search and Find cover

Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Search & Find

Publisher: Readerlink/Studio Fun
Author: Sally Little
Illustrator: Art Mawhinney, Fabio Piacentini, and Ferran Rodriguez
Format: Search & Find
Description: Travel across the galaxy and explore scenes from The Force AwakensThe Last Jedi, and The Rise of Skywalker in this fun, illustrated search and find collection.
On-sale: 10/4/2019

 

Adult Non-Fiction

The Art of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker cover

The Art of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

Publisher: Abrams
Author: Phil Szostak
Art: Lucasfilm Art Department
Format: Art of
Description: The official behind-the-scenes concept, production, and post-production art for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. Go inside the creative process behind the most anticipated film of the century. The latest trilogy in the Star Wars film series brings the Skywalker Saga to a close and The Art of The Rise of Skywalker will take readers into the creative process behind visualizing the epic worlds, creatures, characters, costumes, weapons and vehicles of the landmark conclusion more than 40 years in the making.
On-sale: 12/20/2019

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Visual Dictionary cover

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: The Visual Dictionary

Publisher: DK
Author: Pablo Hidalgo
Format: Reference
Description: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: The Visual Dictionary is a 200-page definitive guide to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, revealing the characters, creatures, droids, locations, and technology from the new film. Packed with 500+ images and information, plus cross-sections of new vehicles, as penned by Star Wars scribe Pablo Hidalgo, it’s a must-have for all fans who want to go beyond the movie experience.
On-sale: 12/20/2019

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Official Movie Special cover

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: Official Movie Special

Publisher: Titan
Author: Various
Format: Magazine special
Description: An in-depth collector’s edition featuring material from long-awaited the all-new Star Wars movie, The Rise of Skywalker, including interviews with the cast and crew and exclusive imagery.
On-sale: 12/20/2019

 

Kids Fiction

The Galaxy Needs You cover

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: The Galaxy Needs You

Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
Author: Caitlin Kennedy
Illustrator: Eda Kaban
Format: Hardcover picture book
Description: Have you ever stopped to think about how there is nobody else in the galaxy who is exactly like you? This empowering picture book celebrates young heroes-in-the-making and features illustrations that follow Rey on her own hero’s journey.
On-sale: 12/17/2019

 

Kids Non-Fiction

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Official Guide cover

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Official Guide

Publisher: DK
Author: Matt Jones
Format: Reference
Description: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: The Official Guide is a 96-page informative guide to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker for younger fans, revealing the characters, creatures, droids, locations, and technology from the new film. Packed with images and information, it’s the perfect companion for those who want to relive the movie outside of the theater.
On-sale: 12/20/2019

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Lucasfilm Unveils Complete ‘Journey to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker‘ Publishing Program – Exclusive

In Star Wars: Alien Archive, Get a Closer Look at the Galaxy’s Inhabitants

StarWars.com

Tim McDonagh has already tackled illustrating the galaxy, having created the lush landscapes of Star Wars Galactic Maps: An Illustrated Atlas of the Star Wars Universe. For his new book, McDonagh tried to imagining how an artist might approach sketching the denizens of the galaxy he encountered on his travels among the stars.

McDonagh used the films and animated series for reference material on more widely-known species. “I looked at a fair amount of the comics, too, for inspiration,” he says. “And there were a few of them that had never been depicted before visually so I was just going off of descriptions.”

The cover of the new book Star Wars: Alien Archive.

The result is Star Wars: Alien Archive, an in-world guide to Star Wars aliens and creatures organized into categories such as dry or wet habitats, frozen lands, aerial and space, and domesticated creatures. McDonagh started with a list of over 200 alien species. “Being a big fan of Star Wars, I knew a fair amount of the creatures we were going to include in the book,” he says, “but I was amazed at just how many we managed to fit in there at the end and how many I hadn’t come across before in the Star Wars universe.”

The entire book took about six months to illustrate including smaller side images that accompany some species entries. “We thought it would be cool to have some sketchier looking illustrations in the book and kind of imagined that Gammit Chond [the famed Ithorian artist] would have sketched out something similar to those on his travels across the galaxy.”

The book, already released by Egmont in the UK, hits shelves in the US today. In preparation for its release, McDonagh recently sat down with StarWars.com to share his five favorite illustrated entries from the volume.

An illustration from the new book Star Wars: Alien Archive.

Rodian

I think Greedo would be one of my favorite characters in the Star Wars universe and I think the way Rodians look and sound make them one of my favorite species in the Galaxy! I love their huge eyes and scaly faces makes them a fun one to draw. I wanted to give our large illustration of the Rodian a sort of bounty hunter like feel as Rodians are well known for their criminal activity.

An illustration from the new book Star Wars: Alien Archive.

Dianoga

I really enjoyed drawing up and researching the Dianoga as you usually only get to see the eye so it was cool drawing up the rest of it! The trash compactor scene is one of my fondest Star Wars memories and drawing up the Dianoga brought it all back to me.

An illustration from the new book Star Wars: Alien Archive.

Ewoks
This was one of the first illustrations I worked up for the book and I think it still remains one of my favorites. It has lots of vegetation going on in the foreground and background which is one of my favorite things to draw!

An illustration from the new book Star Wars: Alien Archive.

Nuna

This is probably one of my favorite more obscure creatures in the galaxy, purely based on the way they look and move. I used to play a lot of Star Wars: Galaxies and the lesser known Episode 1 – The Gungan Frontier and they both featured a lot of Nunas so it’s good to see they’re still a popular alien!

An illustration from the new book Star Wars: Alien Archive.

Bith

I always associate the Bith with the Mos Eisley Cantina band The Modal Nodes so it’s interesting thinking of them as a race of people in their own right. I love the design of their heads and faces, I think they’ve got a lot of character. It was also cool to get a closer look at the instruments, too, as you only get a quick glance in A New Hope!

You can get your copy of Star Wars: Alien Archive from Disney Lucasfilm Press today.

Amy Richau is a writer, lifelong Star Wars geek, and diehard Denver Broncos fan. You can find her on Twitter @amyrichau and more of her writing on FANgirl Blog.

Site tags: #StarWarsBlog

In Star Wars: Alien Archive, Get a Closer Look at the Galaxy’s Inhabitants

How Dooku: Jedi Lost Explores a Rising Sith Lord and His Apprentice

StarWars.com

If you’re an eBay seller of Count Dooku collectibles, there’s a good chance that Star Wars author Cavan Scott is one of your customers.

“I’ve bought a lot of merchandise in the last couple of weeks,” Scott, writer of the upcoming audio drama Dooku: Jedi Lost, tells StarWars.com with a laugh. “Some of it arrived the other day, and my wife just looked at the big box and went, ‘That’s another Dooku thing, isn’t it?’ ‘Yes. Yes it is.’”

For Scott, writing Dooku: Jedi Lost has made him a bigger fan of the character than he ever was before — and that’s because his story is not just about revealing Count Dooku’s past, but exploring how a mixture of personality and circumstance led to the villain he’d become.

“There has to be a reason he’s so shut down,” Scott says of the cold, manipulative Sith Lord. “And it can’t just be because he’s been turned by Darth Sidious.”

Cover of Dooku: Jedi Lost.

Dooku: Jedi Lost, coming April 30, will investigate Dooku’s early days training Asajj Ventress, and in turn, his journey to becoming the Sith Lord we meet in Star Wars: Attack the Clones — one who would murder his friends and start a war that would tear the galaxy apart. As the story unfolds prior to the beginning of the Clone Wars, Dooku’s sister has gone missing; he dispatches Ventress to find her in a surprising first — and very personal — mission for his new assassin. “In doing this, she starts discovering stories of Dooku and his sister from when they were very young,” says Scott, “and we find out that Dooku, even though he joined the [Jedi] Temple at a very early age, still kept in touch with his family.”

Indeed, as Ventress learns about her new master, so will we. “We meet his family,” Scott says. “We meet his father. We meet his sister. We meet his brother. We go from him being a Padawan in the temple, right through the moment he tells the Council he’s leaving. So it’s his entire life.” We’ll see Dooku as a Padawan with his master, Yoda, adventuring with his best friend Sifo-Dyas — who would later take the fall for the creation of the clone army — and his time with his own Padawan learners. Pulling back the curtain on one of Star Wars’ biggest bad guys is no small venture, especially when mystique is part of the villain’s character.

“One of the questions we had to ask ourselves was, ‘Why would he open up?’” Scott says. “It was a bit of a blank canvas. I’ve drawn from some things we’ve known from Legends about Dooku. But it’s a very different story.”

The blank canvas proved “liberating” for Scott. He worked closely with author Claudia Gray, who was writing Star Wars: Master & Apprentice at the same time; this was particularly beneficial when it came to the inclusion of Rael Averross, Dooku’s Padawan after Qui-Gon Jinn, who appears as an older Jedi in Gray’s book. “In Jedi Lost we see him with Dooku and Qui-Gon, as well,” Scott says. “So there is a relationship between Qui-Gon and Averross.”

Count Dooku in Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

One challenge facing Scott was showing Dooku before he turned to the ways of the Sith, while not undercutting his impact as a villain, or making him too sympathetic. “He doesn’t start off as the man we now know,” Scott says. “But there’s always a sense that he knows that he’s better than everyone in the room. And there’s an arrogance there right from the beginning.”

Scott illustrates this through his relationship with Sifo-Dyas, who received only a mysterious mention in Attack of the Clones and was fleshed out a little more in The Clone Wars. “He’s a bit of an outsider as well, so the two of them at the temple just come together,” Scott says. “Sifo-Dyas is there to say, ‘Just remember you’re the same as the rest of us.’ And they encourage each other to perhaps push the boundaries of what they should be doing.”

In exploring a Jedi who pushes these boundaries, Scott was keen not to retread previous stories in the same vein. His way of avoiding this pitfall came down to a major realization of what separates Dooku from one of the saga’s icons. “Whereas Anakin was always saddled with being the Chosen One, Dooku wants to be the Chosen One,” he says. “Right from the off, he thinks he’s better than everyone.” And perhaps, this ambition and arrogance doesn’t go unnoticed. “Pablo [Hidalgo] pointed out that Yoda taking a Padawan was huge. There would be a reason that Yoda would want to take him.” And while this is not quite the tale of his seduction by Darth Sidious, it looms large. “The dark side plays a part throughout,” Scott says, “because I think it’s always there in his nature.”

Asajj Ventress in Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

And the dark side certainly comes into play with Asajj Ventress, Dooku’s newly minted Sith apprentice at the start of Dooku: Jedi Lost. Scott’s first time writing the character — a favorite of his daughters — he found her incredibly layered and complex. And in Dooku: Jedi Lost, she may be at her lowest. “She’s at quite a difficult point in her life,” he says. “She’s been a slave. She’s seen her master die. And then she basically goes into another form of servitude, willingly to a certain degree. She’s not quite the Ventress we know from later on.” Scott worked to define Ventress’s thinking at this time: her desire to be christened as a Sith — and her feelings of not completing her Jedi path. “It’s called Jedi Lost,” he says. “It’s not just about Dooku.”

Dooku: Jedi Lost promises to change the way we see both Ventress and Dooku. But for the Sith Lord, it will deliver something previously elusive: a deeper appreciation. “That’s the whole point of doing this kind of project,” Scott says. “We want people to identify more with him and understand him more. He’s the character now for me, personally, that I wanted him to be when I went to see Episode II.”

Dooku: Jedi Lost arrives April 30 and is available for pre-order now.

Dan Brooks is Lucasfilm’s senior content strategist of online, the editor of StarWars.com, and a writer. He loves Star Wars, ELO, and the New York Rangers, Jets, and Yankees. Follow him on Twitter @dan_brooks where he rants about all these things.

Site tags: #StarWarsBlog

How Dooku: Jedi Lost Explores a Rising Sith Lord and His Apprentice