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Star Wars TV spin-off aims for 100 episodes

Jumping the shark

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Producers of a TV spin-off of the Star Wars films reckon it will run for 100 episodes. Producer Rick McCallum told BBC Radio 1 that writing will shortly begin on the project, which will begin filming in 2008 ready for transmission in the same year.

The series is set between Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith and Star Wars IV: A New Hope and covers the early years of Luke Skywalker. So, unless the writers decide to rewrite the Star Wars story arc, expect lots of scenes of farming on the desert world of Tatooine. Or perhaps not. McCallum said the series would introduce new characters and be "much more dramatic and darker" than the films.

Which sounds a lot like the marketing blurb for Revenge of the Sith.

The TV series is likely to feature a different cast from the actors who played in the films. This, plus the fact the project will kick off after Star Wars creator George Lucas has finished with a third Indiana Jones sequel, make the Star Wars TV series sound like The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles.

Readers might be forgiven for thinking the project is inspired chiefly by the desire to extract more dosh from Star Wars fans than any artistic merit. Here's two reasons for thinking this for starters. The best film in the franchise, Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back, was coincidentally not directed by George Lucas who gave us a film based around a tax dispute, the risible Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace.

It may well be that the world is hungry for more space opera. In which case, we can't help but think that resurrecting Firefly might be a better option than further troubling Mr Lucas' accountants. Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith alone took £500m at the box office outside of the US, the BBC reports. ®

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