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Mace Windu is a fictional character in the Star Wars universe. He is portrayed by actor Samuel L. Jackson in the prequel films.

Character conception and overview Edit

Mace Windu is one of the earliest named and created characters in Star Wars history, being the narrator of the original 1973 drafts of the original Star Wars film (later named Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope).[1] Through the process of redrafting and copyediting, his character was removed from the original film and its two successors, but he was reintroduced in 1994 when series creator George Lucas began writing the prequel trilogy.

When Lucas offered Samuel L. Jackson the role of Mace Windu, Jackson signed on, but with certain stipulations on the portrayal of his character. One of the conditions was that his character die in a spectacular fashion, rather than be killed off "like some punk." Template:Fact

Also, according to an interview on The Late Show with David Letterman on May 13, 2005, Windu's purple lightsaber was a personal request from Jackson to Lucas as a quid pro quo for appearing in the films, as well as a way of making the character unique and easily distinguishable. Jackson, a huge Star Wars fan, especially wanted his own color so that his character could be easily spotted and recognizable in the final battle scene of Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones amid all of the other Jedi.

Mace Windu is a Jedi Master and one of the last members of the Jedi Council before the fall of the Galactic Republic. Windu is the Council's primary liaison to the Supreme Chancellor, although the Clone Wars cause him to question his firmest held beliefs. He is the former Master of the Order, a title he passed on to Jedi Master Yoda during the Clone Wars.[2]

Etymology and influence of name Edit

Philosophy scientist James Whitlark has suggested that the name Windu appears to come from the word window. An early draft of the original Star Wars script had Mace Windu serving as narrator, and thus the "window" through which the action is viewed.[1]

Appearances in the Star Wars films Edit

The Phantom Menace Edit

Windu first appears in Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace as the Master of the Order.[2] He is present when Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn (played by Liam Neeson) brings Anakin Skywalker (played by Jake Lloyd) before the Jedi Council, claiming that the young slave is the "Chosen One" who Jedi prophecy foretells will bring balance to the Force. Windu shares the Council's concerns that the boy exhibits a great deal of fear and anger, and agrees with the body's decision to deny Qui-Gon permission to train him as a Jedi. However, following Qui-Gon's death at the hands of the Sith Lord Darth Maul (played by Ray Park), the Council reconsiders and allows Qui-Gon's former apprentice, Obi-Wan Kenobi (played by Ewan McGregor), to train Anakin. He is present along with Yoda at Qui-Gon's funeral at which time he confirms with Yoda (voiced by Frank Oz) that Qui-Gon's killer was undoubtedly a Sith.

Attack of the Clones Edit

In Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones, Windu tries to help the Council defeat the growing threat presented by the Separatists, led by renegade Jedi Master Count Dooku (played by Christopher Lee). He also watches with growing concern as the now-adult Anakin (played by Hayden Christensen) begins to rebel against Obi-Wan's tutelage. In the film's climactic scene, he leads a large group of Jedi in a battle against Dooku's army. In this battle, Windu kills bounty hunter Jango Fett (voiced by Temuera Morrison).

Revenge of the Sith Edit

Windu makes his final film appearance in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. By this point, he has fought in the Clone Wars for three years, during which time he has come to distrust the Republic's Supreme Chancellor, Palpatine (played by Ian McDiarmid). When Palpatine appoints Anakin as his personal representative on the Jedi Council, Windu fears that the move is designed to give the Chancellor a vote in Jedi affairs, and casts a key vote in denying Anakin the full rank of Jedi Master.

Shortly afterwards, Anakin tells Windu he has learned that Palpatine is in fact the Sith Lord. Windu, accompanied by Jedi Masters Kit Fisto, Agen Kolar, and Saesee Tiin, goes to the Chancellor's office to confront him. Resisting arrest, Palpatine brandishes a red lightsaber and launches himself at the Jedi, demonstrating his unimaginable skill by quickly killing all three of Windu's companions and engaging the Master of the Order himself in a lightsaber duel. Windu, universally unmatched in lightsaber skills, manages to gain the upper hand and disarms the Sith Lord. Anakin then arrives and Palpatine begs for his help, stating that he is the only one who can save his wife. Anakin pleads with Windu not to kill the Chancellor, and that he should stand trial before the Senate, insisting that it is the Jedi way. Windu remarks that Palpatine is a Sith Lord, and is too dangerous to be kept alive. As Windu prepares to strike, Anakin intervenes and severs Windu's lightsaber hand, causing the only Jedi strong enough to defeat the Sith Lord (not even Grand Master Yoda can defeat him) to become completely defenseless. Palpatine then hits the Master of the Order with a torrent of lightning and forces Windu out of the chamber window to his death.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008 TV Series) Edit

After answering a plea from the Senate, the Council sent Anakin Skywalker and his Padawan Ahsoka Tano to breach the heavy Separatist blockade around the planet of Ryloth so as to make way for a ground assault aimed at freeing the Twi'lek people from Separatist occupation.

To accomplish this, Windu was forced to rely on his considerable negotiation skills, as he knew he would require the aid of Cham Syndulla; leader of the Twi'lek Freedom Fighters. However, Syndulla was loathe to negotiate with the Republic as he did not trust Ryloth's Senator Orn Free Taa, whilst Taa himself feared that Syndulla planned to sieze power. After learning that the Separatists had begun to bomb innocent Twi'leki villages however, Syndulla at least agreed to talks with Senator Taa.

Windu acted as moderator during the talks, and ultimately was able to form an alliance between the two out of their mutual wish to see their people free. Syndulla then added his forces to Windu's and the pair managed to retake Lessu from Tambor. In addition, Windu managed to capture the fiendish Separatist leader himself.

Appearances in the Expanded Universe Edit

Mace Windu appears extensively in the Star Wars "Expanded Universe" of novels and comic books. He is a major supporting character in the animated micro-series Star Wars: Clone Wars, which appeared on Cartoon Network from 2003 to 2005. In the series, he is portrayed by voice-actor T. C. Carson.

In episodes 12 and 13 of Volume One, he is shown defending the grasslands planet Dantooine against a large hovering "fortress", and over the course, he loses his lightsaber, forcing him to instead use a lethal form of unarmed combat powered by the Force. In episode 25, the final episode of Volume Two (and the series), he and Yoda help defend the planet Coruscant from an attack by Dooku's second-in-command, General Grievous. In the midst of the battle, he realizes that the attack is a ruse to distract the Jedi from Grievous' true objective: to kidnap Palpatine. He is too late to save the Chancellor, but uses the Force to crush Grievous' chest, inflicting upon the cyborg general the wheezing, asthmatic cough heard in Revenge of the Sith.

In the 2008 CGI film Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Samuel L. Jackson reprised his role as Mace Windu. However, Terrence C. Carson reprised his role as Mace Windu in the television series that followed the film.

Windu is the central character of Matthew Stover's novel Shatterpoint, in which he is called to his home planet of Haruun Kal to defeat his former apprentice, Depa Billaba, who has turned to the dark side. The novel establishes that Windu has the unique talent of seeing "shatterpoints", or faultlines in the Force that could affect the destinies of certain individuals, and indeed the galaxy itself. Stover also referenced this ability in his novelization of Revenge of the Sith.

Besides Shatterpoint, Mace has appeared in other Expanded Universe novels, such as Cloak of Deception, Darth Maul: Shadow Hunter, Rogue Planet, Outbound Flight, The Cestus Deception, Jedi Trial, Yoda: Dark Rendezvous and Labyrinth of Evil. The character was mentioned in Karen Traviss's Republic Commando book series, Alan Dean Foster's The Approaching Storm and James Luceno's Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader.

Powers and abilities Edit

Shatterpoint establishes that Windu is responsible for creating Vaapad, the full seventh form of lightsaber combat, and the only one to have mastered it, speaking for his incredible talent. Vaapad creates a superconducting loop that reflects the enemy's attack while allowing for great speed and power. Nicknamed by young Padawan learners, the form is named after a predatory animal on one of the moons of Sarapin that uses multiple tentacles for a blindingly fast attack. Vaapad is a penumbra of the dark side of the Force in its requirement for the user to actually enjoy the thrill of the fight and the thrill of victory.

Further readingEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 James Whitlark, Ph.D.. "Stage Eight in The Star Wars and Harry Potter Series?". whitlarks.com. http://human-threshold-systems.whitlarks.com/bpchp1p10.html. Retrieved 2007-09-24. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia. 

External links Edit

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