To Star Wars fans, Luke Skywalker is a kindhearted farm boy turned rebel who helps bring balance to the Force and definitely kisses his sister too many times. But according to Mark Hamill, in a galaxy not so far, far away, you could have seen Luke a bit differently.
While chatting on an episode of Russo Bros. Pizza Film School released on YouTube last week, Hamill discussed how Luke Skywalker’s original introduction in Star Wars was cut from the film.
In the final version, Luke comes into the story when he and his uncle are buying R2-D2 and C-3PO from the Jawas. But Hamill explains he was originally going to appear even sooner.
“As soon as the robots jettison off of the ship that Vader’s on, you cut to this kid in the desert working on a moisture evaporator. He sees a little thing up in the sky, takes out his micro-binoculars,” Hamill said.
That little thing is Leia’s ship being captured by Darth Vader’s, and Luke, very excitedly, heads off to the infamous Tosche Station to tell all the cool kids what he’s seen.
Yes, the same Tosche Station he never makes it to later in the film after being denied a super fun trip to pick up power converters.
(Wow, Uncle Owen, could you be more of a Nerf Herder?)
“I’ve been ridiculed for all these years, ‘Did you ever get those power converters? Ha ha ha.’ Ah, never heard that before,” Hamill said.
The actor explained that in the cut scenes, after Luke arrives at the teen club at Tosche Station, there were different moments that could have added nuance to the character.
“Number one, he’s ridiculed roundly by his peers, so he’s not particularly cool or popular,” Hamill said, explaining that a character player by actor Koo Stark even called him “Wormie.”
The moment also shows Luke excited to run into Biggs Darklighter (Garrick Hagon), showing that they are old friends.
“He’s dressed in an Imperial uniform, and I’m going, ‘Wow, it’s so great. I can’t wait till I can get off this dump of a planet and join with you,’” said Hamill.
But Darklighter is not so keen on the Empire, telling Luke he’s going to jump ship and join the rebels.
“The only reason that’s interesting to me is that Luke has no political persuasion. He thinks it’s great he’s in the Empire. Luke wants to be in the Empire if it’ll get him off of the farm, so there’s no sort of — he’s completely pure in that he’s not politically motivated in any way, shape or form,” Hamill said.
The actor explained how the cut affected the rest of the film, saying the later death of Darklighter was Luke’s original motivation for turning off his targeting system when he destroys the Death Star.
“That’s what gets Luke to turn off the targeting device, when he loses his best friend. It was later they decided to dub in Obi-Wan’s voice saying, ‘Luke, use the Force,’” he explained.
The actor ultimately understood the early scenes had to be dropped to have Luke show up more organically. Still, if you want to see Luke Skywalker, nerdy Empire sympathiser, get picked on by his friends, you can see the scene below or on Disney+ along with other extras: