Star Wars Reboot

Welcome to the official landing page of the unofficial Star Wars: What the Prequels Should Have Been project. #RebootthePrequels

Reboot logo3

I’ve talked a lot about the prequels over the years, but basically the mission statement of my reboot is this: The Star Wars prequels should have been amazing. I’m going to rewrite them so they are.

What you can expect from the Reboot Trilogy (RT):

  • The fun and adventure of the Original Trilogy (OT).
  • Some ideas and concepts from Lucas’ Prequel Trilogy (PT), but none of the silliness and bloating.
  • Basically nothing from the Expanded Universe (EU). Only what we’ve seen on film counts as canon.
  • This will be a standard screenplay, not a Click Your Poison book.

Many others have re-imagined the PT, (Belated Media and Red Letter Media’s YouTube videos, and the Q2 fan-edited “Fall of the Jedi” prequel trilogy. Go Google those three). They did a great job re-constructing the films, but with one, obvious limitation: I have a blank page. I can cross off what I choose, add something completely new, and forge a stand-alone product in the form of a screenplay.

When you read the script for Episode I: A New Menace, you’ll find a whole new movie laid out before you.

Episode I: A New Menace

Available to read now:
A New Menace by James Schannep


A few of the major changes (SPOILERS):

  • The title has a double meaning. It’s a new take on The Phantom Menace, yes, but there’s also a completely new menace added to the trilogy. See the next bullet.
  • Rather than a quasi-racist-stereotype Asian alien Trade Federation, the main villains at the start of the film will be the Mandalorians. Remember Boba Fett? Now imagine a whole clan of mercenaries with that armor and attitude. Now we’ve got a galactic threat to be reckoned with.
  • No Jar-Jar. In fact, no Gungans. All of the nonsense will be cut, and instead the focus will be character relationships, action, and plotting (in that order).
  • Anakin will be introduced to us as a young man, not a boy. He’s going to be more of a Han Solo character, to balance out the puerile Obi-wan.
  • Maul will live on beyond Episode I.

Episode II: Attack of the Empire

Available to read now:

Attack of the Empire by James Schannep

Attack of the Empire

  • This script picks up roughly 18 months to 2 years after Episode I, as opposed to the better part of a decade between the first two movies in Lucas’s prequels.
  • It’s Clone Wars (plural) and not Clone War (singular). There are many battles on many different systems over the course of many, many years.
  • The Mandalorians are slowly forming the role we assumed they had all along: Bounty Hunters.
  • Maul remains a threat.
  • From the title, you can probably guess that the machinations of the Empire get rolling much more quickly.

Episode III: Return of the Sith


Episodes III is coming soon! Please subscribe to the blog or follow me on social media so you don’t miss the release date.

While you’re waiting, don’t forget to check out my analysis of the other Star Wars films:

Comments on this page are welcome! I’d love to hear from other Star Wars fans.

* Disclaimer: Star Wars is owned and operated by Disney/Lucasfilm and these screenplays are written for educational purposes only, as a writing experiment, and offered for free as film criticism by way of fan fiction under copyright fair use exception. The owner of this website encourages everyone to purchase a legal copy of both Star Wars trilogies for comparison, as well as to ensure no profit is lost from the Reboot the Prequels venture.

9 thoughts on “Star Wars Reboot

    • Thanks for reaching out. I’ll have to look into it. Unfortunately, it’s not a simple file upload as Kindle doesn’t like the indentations of screenplay format.

  1. Well, I guess I’ll be the first to give you feedback about A New Menace. Here we go:
    I have to say that I liked it a lot. A great start of the saga is told, and better led than the original Ep.I. Everything fits better, you show Alderaan, which was a big mistake in Lucas’s prequels not showing it (well, at the end of Ep.III only to show Bail, Bail’s wife and Leia), better and more elaborate antagonists than the Neimoidians in Lucas version and Maul is as he should have been and survives at the end of the Episode. The relationship between Obi-Wan and Anakin is best carried, and a very important thing, the Clone Wars are already started which mean we can see more of them, not as in Lucas’s prequels, that we see only the beginning and the end.
    And now the only things I didn’t like:
    – Anakin’s age and Anakin’s mechanical leg: For my taste I think I should be younger. Instead of being about 30 years old, I think he should be in his 20’s (the same age as Lara) or about 25 years old at most and that age (30s) at most in Episode III. As for the mechanical leg, I didn’t liked much, I would prefer that in this episode I still did not have any mechanical prosthesis or that instead of his leg was his right hand. I prefer that he would have some mechanical prosthesis obtained in a fight with Maul and then the rest in his duel with Obi-Wan.
    – Some characters are too young and others too old: This point is related to Anakin’s age, which as I said that for my taste is too old, and some like for example Tarkin (20s) are too young, who I think at least should be in his 30s.
    – Little physical description of the important characters in the script: This point deals specifically with this. I do not have very clear the appearance of the important characters. Do not get me wrong, I know how they are dressed, but as they are physically not much. For example Anakin, I know that he is dressed in a blue pilot suit, but physically, I do not know what color his hair is (blond, black, etc), his hair style (if his hair style is like Luke in Ep.IV) , you know that sort of thing. I know that in Lucas scripts the characters are not very physically described, but unlike Lucas’s prequels, yours cannot be seen by the cinema (unfortunately).
    As you can see, the things I did not like are not from the story which I really like, it’s more about age issues and some decision.
    Is there any possibility of changing some things like the ages and the mechanical leg? Or at least the issue of physical descriptions in the script?
    Thanks I can’t wait to read Episode II: The Dark Lord Of the Sith.

    • Hi, James. Thanks for reading and taking the time to share your thoughts. I’m glad you enjoyed the script! I had a bit of feedback from friends, but you are indeed the first person to give me feedback on the project webpage. So, again, thanks!

      Allow me to address some of your comments:
      -Anakin’s (and Tarkin’s age). You’re absolutely right about Tarkin. That was an error on my part. I’m not sure what part of my brain dropped the ball; Vader is in no way older than Tarkin. The future commander of the Death Star should probably be in his 40s here, as he was in his 60s when Episode IV was filmed.
      As for Anakin, you’ve convinced me. I probably went a bit too far away from him being a kid. Around 25 makes sense for the character and for the actor. This is a fan project, where feedback is quite welcome, and screenplays always undergo several layers of change before production, so I’m going to correct these two characters’ ages. Thank you for the suggestion.
      -Anakin’s mechanical leg brace. This was a deliberate choice to show that Anakin has a history before this movie starts. He thought his time with the Republic was over. Maybe he has a grudge? If he’s a war veteran, he doesn’t seem to be well regarded (remember Palpatine’s first talk with Kenobi). It also shows that he’s somewhat reckless, and prone to injuring his body to get the job done. I understand that these are personal, subjective tastes, but for me it works.
      -Lacking character description. This is the nature of the beast in a screenplay. Essentially, any hot or up-and-coming actors would be vying for the roles of Anakin and Lara. It’s the casting director’s job to find the person who embodies the role presented by the script. What they look like can vary wildly until casting. Further, it’s the costume designer and makeup artist’s job to give them “the look.” But let me ask you, based on the script, if you could cast any actors for the main roles, who would you pick?

      PS – Episode II is coming very soon! I’m almost done tweaking the storyline and will be ready to post for feedback in a week or so.

      • What great news that in a week or so we can enjoy Episode II, I’m very excited!

        As someone who has been raised with the prequels. The first movie that I saw of Star Wars was Episode I, then the Original Trilogy and then Episode II and III. So I can not conceive the prequels without the actors with whom I grew up watching them. Really perhaps the only characters that could see being interpreted by others would be the following:
        – Anakin Skywalker: I could see it interpreted by Leonardo Dicaprio, since in his day rumored he do a test for the paper and perhaps his facial features are more similar to Sebastian Shaw in the Episode VI.
        – Lara: Not knowing fully how Lara’s physically, there are really only two options for me: Natalie Portman (if she is brunette) and Billie Lourd (Carrie Fisher’s natural daughter) in case she was blonde, but also if she were brunette she would be all right.

        So for me the cast of the movie (important characters) would be this:
        Obi-Wan Kenobi – Ewan McGregor
        Anakin Skywalker – Hayden Christensen/Leonardo DiCaprio
        Lara – Natalie Portman/Billie Lourd
        Palpatine – Ian McDiarmid
        Bail Organa – Jimmy Smits
        Tarkin – Ralph Fiennes
        Maul: Ray Park

        • Great Tarkin pick! And yeah, I couldn’t see anyone other than Ewan McGregor or Ian McDiarmid in their roles. Billie Lourd is an interesting pick. I like the family element to it. And I would love nothing more than to see Hayden Christensen “redeem” his role as Anakin, but…he is over 30 😉 As are most leading men these days. DiCaprio is what, almost 50? Maybe I’ll put Anakin as 20s/30s to give a range….

          • I’m glad you liked my choice of cast. Obviously all this is hypothetical, when I chose this cast I chose, so that I could choose the age with which the actors would play their characters, that’s why I put Hayden Christensen and Leonardo DiCaprio, thinking that they would play Anakin in Episode I when they were in their 20’s, same with rest of the cast. 😉

          • I think I’m going to keep it at 20s/30s. This way Anakin can be the sweet spot of young, but not *too* young. He’s had some time to shape who he is. Experiences he carries with him. Remember, Harrison Ford was 35 in “A New Hope”!

  2. Well, it seems that I will also be the first to give you feedback on your Episode II: Attack of the Empire:

    For now is the best episode of your prequels, I really liked it. The plot is much better than the real Episode II, the characters have evolved quite well, Anakin’s fall to the dark side more credible and the surprises that this episode brings are very well carried out.

    I have to say, that to understand this episode well I have had to re-read the script several times. Especially for Darth Vader’s secret and without reading the final notes of the script, I really would not have discovered it. It is true that there are certain clues: the TIE of Vader and more things, but really if it was your objective to avoid that it was known very fast, you have achieved it.

    And now the only things I didn’t like:
    -The titles of the episodes: It is true that this has nothing to do with the plot, but I put it to give you my opinion. Really the title of episode II I do not like too much, for my taste I would have preferred something like this: Fall of the Republic, Rise of the Empire, Dawn of the Empire, you know something like that, which indicates the fall of the Republic and the birth of the Empire. It is true that you try to give a connection between the original titles of the prequels and the original trilogy, but there are actually times that can be repetitive. To give an example the title of your episode III: Return of the Sith, is the same as the episode VI, but changing Jedi by Sith. I already know that you did the same thing in your episode I changing Hope for Menace, but in this case it was better and it was not so obvious.

    -Anakin’s real name: That the real name of Anakin is not this one, but Darth Vader, is something that I did not like. I would have preferred that Anakin was his real name and that Darth Vader was the name he uses as a bounty hunter. Obviously this goes for tastes, like the mechanical leg of A New Menace, for you and for the plot would have liked so, and for me would prefer what I said before.

    In fact I am reading some prequels that Darth Vader instead of being a Sith name or a false name, is a Jedi title. If you want to know more and even read them (he’s currently doing Episode III), I can pass you the link of the page, in fact, you could even put your prequels there, so people give you their opinion.

    Thanks and I can’t wait to read Episode III: Return of the Sith.

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