Star Wars is one of the most iconic movie franchises in the world. The original trilogy captured the hearts of audiences when it was first released in 1977.
The franchise has since expanded to include books, comics, and a wide range of merchandise. But did you know that Star Wars was a comic book before it was a movie?
The Early Days
It all started in 1971 when George Lucas decided to create a space opera. He wrote a script for a film called “The Star Wars” which he later changed to just “Star Wars”. Lucas was inspired by pulp science fiction stories, westerns, and Japanese samurai films.
The Comic Book Adaptation
Before the movie was released, Marvel Comics obtained the rights to create a comic book adaptation of “Star Wars”. The first issue of the comic book was released on April 12, 1977, just one month before the movie hit theaters.
The comic book adaptation followed the story of the movie closely but there were some differences. For example, Luke Skywalker’s best friend was named Biggs Darklighter in the comic book instead of Wedge Antilles. Also, Darth Vader’s armor looks different in some panels compared to how it looks in the movie.
The Success of The Comic Book
Marvel’s “Star Wars” comic book series quickly became popular. It sold millions of copies and helped expand the universe beyond what was shown in the movies. The comics introduced new characters such as Han Solo’s ex-girlfriend Sana Starros and Luke Skywalker’s wife Mara Jade.
Disney Acquires Marvel and Lucasfilm
In 2012, Disney acquired Lucasfilm which gave them control over everything related to Star Wars including Marvel’s “Star Wars” comics. Disney then created their own publishing company called Lucasfilm Press which now produces all Star Wars comics and books.
So, was Star Wars a comic book before it was a movie? Technically, no.
But Marvel’s “Star Wars” comic book adaptation was released before the movie and helped expand the universe beyond what was shown on screen. The success of the comic book series paved the way for other Star Wars comics and books. Today, Star Wars continues to be one of the most beloved franchises in the world with no signs of slowing down anytime soon.