Leaving Tatooine


New Hyperdrive? Check. Free slave who will grow up to be a Sith? Check. Step in icky icky goo? Check. Time to get off this dustbowl of a planet, but not without taking a few moments to say goodbye and clean up some loose ends. This page deals with departing that lovely yellow-orange planet we know and love: Tatooine.


One of the earliest Episode I rumors to surface (many months before its release) was that Anakin would be involved in a fight with a street kid, possibly one of his friends. The rumor was in fact true but the scene was ultimately deleted. The victim of Anakin’s wrath changed quite often.

A call sheet from the film listed this scene as Anakin fights with Seek. Seek is the young boy played by Oliver Walpole who talks to Anakin about him becoming “bug squash” one day.

Then I was sent a picture depicting Anakin pounding on a small Rodian. My first thought was that perhaps Seek was a young Rodian. Then I learned about Wald, the Rodian friend of Anakin played by Warwick Davis. Was that Wald he was pounding on in the picture? It was hard to tell that long before seeing the film, which was still in production. After looking a little more carefully at a copy of the shooting schedule I was given, I noticed there was a scene described as Anakin fights with Kitster. Then to complicate things even more, in the Illustrated Screenplay, I read that the Rodian Anakin was beating on was actually a younger version of Greedo.

It looks like Anakin’s fight went through many changes only to be eventually cut from the film completely. Here’s a bit from the Episode I Insider’s Guide CD-ROM:

In the revised second draft, Anakin tussles with a boy named Seek. When Qui-Gon arrives, he warns the boy that “inflicting pain is not an effective agent of change.” The character of Seek later became one of Anakin’s friends, although he still teases Skywalker.

Somewhere along the line, either George or someone else had the idea to have Anakin beat up a younger version of the sharpshooting Greedo that Han blows away in Episode IV which makes for a nice little tie in. Then, after all that, they decided to drop the scene altogether.

Here’s the Illustrated Screenplay version which takes place after Qui-Gon heads back to Mos Espa for Anakin.


ANAKIN and a GREEDO are rolling around on the ground, fighting. About A DOZEN OR SO KIDS are standing around them, yelling. Suddenly, a long shadow is cast over the TWO BOYS; they stop fighting and look up. QUI-GON is towering over them. KITSTER is with him.

What’s this?

He said I cheated.

Did you?


Do you still think he cheated?


Well, Annie. You know the truth…
You will have to tolerate his opinion,
fighting won’t change it.

QUI-GON moves off down the street. Anakin follows. GREEDO wanders over to WALD who has been watching the goings-on.

Keep this up, Greedo,
and you’re gonna come
to a bad end.

Farther down the street, QUI-GON and ANAKIN head towards Anakin’s hovel. QUI-GON takes a handful of credits from beneath his poncho and hands them to the boy.

These are yours. We sold the Pod.

(suddenly beaming) Yes!

Fortunately, this scene made its way onto the Episode I DVD.

Click to downloadAnakin’s scsuffle with Greedo





One of the most intense scenes in Episode I is the scene where Anakin leaves his mother. This is the main turning point in the Star Wars Saga. This event alone represents the start of a chain of events of epic proportions. The galaxy would literally never be the same after Anakin left his mother and his home behind.

According to the Episode I Insider’s Guide CD-ROM, their farewell was a little different in the beginning. Here’s an excerpt:

During the tearful farewell in the revised rough draft, Shmi tells Anakin, “Son, it is time for you to let go… to give me up. I cannot travel this path with you. I’ve told you, life is a continual transition. You cannot hold time still, stop the sunrise, sunset, or the flow of the Force. Every moment you must let go of something…” To this, Anakin responds, “But Watto is angry, Mom. You’re in danger.” Shmi acknowledges this truth, but tells Anakin that he, too, is in danger and that they each must find their own ways to survive. She ends by reassuring the boy that they will both be fine.

After Anakin is freed and decides to take off with Qui-Gon, he says goodbye to Shmi and then C-3PO. In the original script, Anakin was a little nicer and said goodbye to his loyal friend Kitster too. Here’s the scene from the Episode I Illustrated Screenplay along with some dialogue that was cut from Shmi’s speech to Anakin:

KITSTER runs up to ANAKIN as he and QUI-GON exit Anakin’s hovel. SHMI stands in the doorway. ANAKIN pulls a handful of coins out of his pocket and gives them to KITSTER.

There are so many of us who want
you to stay, Annie…You’re a hero.

I… (looks to SHMI)
I…have to go.

QUI-GON has moved a short way down the street.



Thanks for every moment you’ve been here.
You’re my best friend.

I won’t forget…

ANAKIN hugs KITSTER and runs toward QUI-GON, then stops to look back at his mother standing inthe doorway. He turns back to QUI-GON, then turns and runs back to his mother.

Anakin (starting to cry)
I can’t do it, Mom.
I just can’t.

SHMI hugs ANAKIN. Qui-Gon watches from the distance. She kneels down and looks at him.

Annie, remember when you climbed the
great dune in order to chase the Banthas
away so they wouldn’t be shot…
Remember how you collapsed several
times, exhausted thinking you couldn’t do it?

ANAKIN shakes his head.

Shmi (cont’d)
This is one of those times when you have to
do something you don’t think you can do.
I know how strong you are, Annie.
I know you can do this…

Will I ever see you again?

What does your heart tell you?

I hope so…yes…I guess.

Then we will see each other again.

I…will become a Jedi and I will come back
and free you, Mom… I promise.

No matter where you are, my love will be with you.
Now be brave, and don’t look back…don’t look back.

I love you so much.

By the way, the pictures included here of Anakin and Shmi are alternate angles of the “don’t look back” scene. I checked the film and these angles were never used.



In the film, we heard all about the transmitters that slaves have in their bodies someplace. If a slave tries to escape, “They blow you up!” (How Wude!) So right about now, you’re probably asking yourself how Anakin got off Tatooine with that bug on him and why that wacky Watto didn’t just flip a switch and have the last laugh.

It turns out there was supposed to be a scene where Watto removes the bug from Anakin’s neck. Here’s an excerpt from the Episode I Insider’s Guide CD-ROM:

The revised rough draft includes a scene in which Watto uses a handheld detection device to locate the transmitter, or “bug,” in Anakin’s neck. He then “pulls a trigger, and a loud snap is heard. Watto pulls something out of the gizmo and holds up a thumbnail-sized chip. There is a little blood on Anakin’s neck.” Obi-Wan patches the small wound. Before Anakin and the Jedi leave, Watto chides, “I hope you enjoy your freedom, boy. Come back someday and visit your Mom.”

(Note – in the early drafts it was just Obi-Wan in the first part of the film. Qui-Gon was not introduced until the Coruscant sequences.)



Anakin doesn’t forget to say goodbye to old Jira before he leaves Tatooine.

When reading the following excerpt, take note that in the beginning of this scene, Qui-Gon and Anakin are exiting Watto’s shop. This is most likely to remove the slave transmitter inside of Anakin, though it’s not mentioned at all.

Here’s the scene from the Episode I Illustrated Screenplay:

ANAKIN and QUI-GON exit WATTO’S and stop before Jira’s fruit stand. ANAKIN hands JIRA some coins.

I’ve been freed, and I’m going away.
Buy yourself a cooling unit with this…
Otherwise I’ll worry about you.

Jira is astonished. She stares, not knowing what to say.

Can I give you a hug?


She gives him a hug.

I’ll miss you, Annie…
there isn’t a kinder boy in the galaxy.
You be careful…

Fortunately, this scene made its way onto the Episode I DVD! It’s paired up with another deleted scene involving the Sith Probe Droid.

Click to download Farewell to Jira





In the film, Darth Maul has a bunch of Sith Probe droids flying around Tatooine in search of his prey. Right after talking to Jira, Qui-Gon and Anakin start making their way out of town and head toward their transport. At this point, Qui-Gon senses a Sith Probe Droid hovering near and is forced to deal with it. This would explain why Qui-Gon and Anakin are running to their ship after leaving town.

Here’s the excerpt from the Illustrated Screenplay:

ANAKIN runs off to join QUI-GON, who has already started down the street. As they walk along together, QUI-GON notices something out of the corner of his eye.
Suddenly, without breaking his stride, he ignites his laser sword, swings around, and lunges forward and cuts a lurking PROBE DROID in half. QUI-GON inspects the sparking and fizzing DROID.

What is it?

Probe Droid. Very unusual…
not like anything I’ve seen before.
Come on.

QUI-GON and ANAKIN start running.

On page 92 of  The Making of Episode I by Laurent Bouzereau and Jody Duncan, there’s a picture from this scene and if you look closely, you can see that Qui-Gon has a lightsaber in his hand.

George Lucas is pointing down to where a mangled Sith probe droid lies.

Fortunately, this scene made its way onto the Episode I DVD. It’s paired up with the scene where Anakin says farewell to Jira.

Click to download Farewell to Jira





In one of Darth Maul’s coolest scenes, he doesn’t even wait to hit the ground before attacking Qui-Gon in the desert on Tatooine.

He will, however, hit the the cutting room floor…

In the film, we hear Qui-Gon tell Anakin to “Tell them to take off!” However, we never see or hear Anakin do this.

Here is the dialogue from the Episode I Illustrated Screenplay:

ANAKIN runs into the main hallway of the spaceship, where PADMÉ and Captain Panaka are working.

Qui-Gon’s in trouble.
He says to take off…now!

Capt. Panaka
Who are you?

He’s a friend.

During the duel, we see Qui-Gon escape from the clutches of Darth Maul by leaping onto the landing ramp of the Queen’s ship. In the original version, as quoted here from the Episode I Illustrated Screenplay, Darth Maul had one last trick up his sleeve…

The SITH LORD immediately jumps onto the ramp after QUI-GON, but barely makes it. His heels hang over the edge of a forty-foot drop. QUI-GON swings his laser sword with all his might and knocks DARTH MAUL off the ramp and onto the desert floor. The ramp closes and the Naboo craft rockets away, leaving the Sith Lord standing alone.



Many hardcore Star Wars fans noticed that Episode I didn’t have any of those iconic shots where you see a cockpit view of streaking starlines as hyperspace is activated. It turns out that there was at least one scene like this but alas, it was removed.

After the confrontation with Darth Maul on Tatooine, Anakin is introduced to Obi-Wan after Qui-Gon is found on the floor of the Queen’s ship. There was a brief scene cut out right after this where Naboo pilot Ric Olié activates the new hyperdrive.

Here’s the scene from the Episode I Illustrated Screenplay:

RIC OLIÉ pulls back on the hyperdrive. OBI-WAN, QUI-GON, and ANAKIN watch.

Let’s hope this hyperdrive works
and Watto didn’t get the last laugh.

The stars streak outside the cockpit window.

Starwars.com gave us an official answer as to why there aren’t any streaking starlines in the Prequel Trilogy in one of their “Ask the Jedi Council” features. Here’s George Lucas himself explaining:

“I think of the series as one movie. In order to keep the impact of the hyperspace jump in Episode IV, I have decided not to use it in the first three films. If you’re watching them from one to six, you’ll get the same thrill.”


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