You’ll never guess what “Star Wars” character was actually an accident
You already know that everything in the Star Wars universe isn’t always perfect — hello, Jar Jar Binks, anyone? But what you might be surprised to learn is that one of the best characters in the whole saga wasn’t even supposed to be in the movie in the first place. Thanks to a lot of changes and cutting when it came to the Star Wars story, one character started off as something completely different, and wound up a big, walking carpet.
Talking at the 40th Anniversary Panel at Star Wars Celebration, Star Wars mastermind, George Lucas, touched on the fact that Chewbacca originally wasn’t in the movie. He wasn’t even in the script. Instead, Chewbacca was just a bunch of Ewoks. But even before that, he was a dog.
"I had a large dog named Indiana*," Lucas told the crowd. "He would ride around in the car [with me] in the front seat. I loved that image of driving with a large [dog]. So, that was where I said, 'That would be a fun character for Star Wars.'"
But, things don’t always work out as planed. Lucas didn’t intend to actually put that image in Star Wars, until he started tweaking the Wookies and the less-evolved Ewoks. In earlier drafts of Star Wars, it was actually this furry race that overthrew the Empire, but eventually they were all cut. Except for Chewbacca.
"Originally...the Wookies were what the Ewoks became. They weren't technical at all, they were primitive. As I moved along, and I realized I had to cut the wookies out of the end [of A New Hope]. I decided to save one, and make him the copilot. That's really how [Chewbacca] ended up with his starring role."
As yes. As usual, the Wookie always ends up winning.
*And yes, George Lucas really did name the dog Indiana.