Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Illustration by Nick Wanserski

Disney isn’t about to do something as simple as just make a new Star Wars trilogy. Spending billions to acquire one of the most beloved film franchises in the history of the medium (not to mention one of the most dedicated fan bases in the anything of ever) means the Mouse House is going to get its money’s worth. Which is why, in addition to the new trilogy, Disney also announced it’s making a spin-off film centered around Han Solo (not to mention a rumored one about Boba Fett). These new films got us thinking about the characters we’d really like to see get their own spin-off movies. And so The A.V. Club presents a range of characters from previous Star Wars films—from the beloved to the “who?”—along with the type of movie we’d like to see them in, title and all. While it’s by no means an exhaustive list (and we look forward to your additions in the comments), we feel confident that any list including the difficult battle with space drugs faced by Mos Eisley Cantina musician Figrin D’an is off to a strong start.

1. Character: Wampa
Film Title: I Am Wampa


How can you be a monster when you’re just following your heart? That’s the question at the center of I Am Wampa, a meditative and moving character study about the misunderstood creature living a solitary life in a Hoth ice cave. Possessing the soul of a poet but the communication skills of a ravenous boar, the nameless protagonist whiles away his days composing sonnets in his mind, pausing only to kill prey with berserker fury. But all that strength isn’t powerful enough to conquer his biggest enemy: loneliness. [Alex McCown]

2. Characters: Dengar, Bossk, IG-88, Zuckuss, 4-LOM
Film Title: Bounty Hunters: You Do Need Our Scum

Five of the galaxy’s most notorious bounty hunters get snubbed by the Empire and lose a lucrative gig to Boba Fett. Luckily, all that creates for them is opportunity. When a contract to take down a Hutt kingpin comes up, the five realize they can’t handle it separately and form a reluctant team rife with personality conflicts. Bossk can’t stop being bitter about Admiral Piett’s insult, IG-88 and 4-LOM clash over who’s the better literal killing machine, and Dengar and Zuckuss are each convinced they’re in charge of the group. And, true to their nature, every single one has a scheme to swindle the others out of their share at the end. [Les Chappell]

3. Character: Wedge
Film Title: Wedge Lives


The only survivor of the Battle Of Yavin not to get a medal, perpetual also-ran Wedge Antilles ever hovers on the periphery of the Rebellion. Getting winged and missing out on glory (“Sorry!”), having to congratulate others for getting the glory (“Nice shot, Jackson!”), or being overshadowed and forced to dance at the edge of an Ewok bonfire, Wedge always leaves too soon or arrives too late, and is left watching from afar, musing on how the heroes have all the luck. Wedge Lives is Star Wars as told from inside a sweaty flight suit. [Dennis Perkins]

4. Character: Figrin D’an
Film Title: Mad About Me


Backstage at the Mos Eisley Cantina, Figrin D’an is reflecting on the events in his life that have brought him to this point. There was his hard youth on Clak’dor VII, the tragic death of his brother Jack D’an, and his struggles with addiction to space drugs, but all of that has been leading up to this: the moment he and his band take the stage to play the only song they know. This is the story of Figrin D’an, but it’s also the story of that song. This is Mad About Me. [Sam Barsanti]

5. Character: Lando Calrissian
Film Title: Lando’s Eleven


Con artist, smuggler, backstabber, and charmer extraordinaire, The Empire Strikes Back hints at a rich backstory for Han Solo’s notable frenemy without giving us any of the details, save his previous ownership of the Millennium Falcon—until now. Lando’s Eleven sees a young Calrissian assemble a team to steal a valuable intergalactic MacGuffin out from under the Empire’s nose, with a ragtag team of 10 smugglers, bounty hunters, droids… and maybe a certain mechanically inclined Wookiee? [Mike Vago]

6. Character: Bothans
Film Title: Reservoir Droids

The upcoming Rogue One celebrates the Rebels who stole the plans for the original Death Star, setting in motion the events of Star Wars: Episode IV. But what about the Rebel Alliance’s more calamitous success gaining information on the second Death Star? Many Bothans died securing key information about the soon-to-be fully operational battle station, but how? This time, getting the plans turns out to be the easy part, as transporting those plans safely into Rebel hands takes us through a series of twists and turns, revelations and betrayals, as a team of Bothan spies try to outwit the Empire’s best and brightest, never knowing who to trust, fearing that one (or more) among them is a mole, all while being pursued by Stormtroopers, bounty hunters, and Darth Vader himself. [Mike Vago]


7. Character: Obi-Wan Kenobi
Film Title: Tatooine Nights


One of the best story threads in the prequel trilogy is Obi-Wan’s planet-hopping solo detective work investigating bounty hunters and cloners. In between Episode III and Episode IV, Obi-Wan went into watchful exile on Tatooine, but not every moment of his time could have been occupied by Force-meditating and Luke-observing. Tatooine Nights sheds some light on this missing time as Obi-Wan gets mixed up in a mystery that only a semi-retired Jedi knight with a working knowledge of local dive bars can solve. His Jedi code makes him relatively impervious to femme fatales of any alien race, but he has to limit his lightsaber use to stay undercover. Also, he’s definitely going to have to talk to Watto. [Jesse Hassenger]

8. Characters: Ben Quadinaros and Sebulba
Film Title: Coruscant Drift


The crudely assembled but brilliant fan trailer for a Furious 7-style Sebulba movie hints at a great franchise-within-franchise potential in the high-stakes, low-honor world of podracing. Coruscant Drift teams veteran podracer Sebulba with the ultimate busta: the ill-fated wannabe Ben Quadinaros. Forced to go on the lam to Coruscant after running afoul of the Hutts, Sebulba and Quadinaros form a reluctant and unlikely alliance as they navigate the planet’s street-and-sky racing scene. [Jesse Hassenger]

9. Character: Ponda Baba
Film Title: The Gun In The Other Hand


As a recent xkcd strip notes, the guys “hassling Luke in the Mos Eisley Cantina” are a longstanding mystery. True, they’re not so mysterious if you’ve seen this Robot Chicken skit that explains everything, or read all the Extended Universe material (The Mos Eisley Cantina Pop-Up Book, for instance) which gives those guys names, backstories, and post-lightsaber-mutilation futures. But none of that stuff is canon anymore, so there’s still room in the world for a gritty Tatooine crime movie where Ponda Baba, one-armed and bitter, pulls some of those wretched cantina scum and villains together for a heist to steal a few valuable artifacts from Jabba’s treasury and get off their dead-end desert planet. Think The Rover or Blue Ruin—small, grubby, intense indie movies about a desperate, driven man with almost nothing left to lose. Except, in this case, his other arm. [Tasha Robinson]

10. Character: Twi’lek slave dancers
Film Title: Dancing For Themselves


One funny thing about the Star Wars Extended Universe is that creators tend to want to obediently follow any material established in the canon, which leads to, for instance, the Star Wars role-playing game treating entire races as if the one example seen in the movies was representative of every individual in the universe. One Aqualish thug in the Star Wars cantina? Clearly all Aqualish are crude, violent mercenaries. And the Twi’lek slave dancer who gets eaten by the rancor in Return Of The Jedi obviously suggests an entire culture based around sexy lady slaves. But the larger-universe idea of a long tradition of Twi’lek slave trade opens up the possibility of a terrific, energetic, angry-feminist Mad Max: Fury Road in space, with a Twi’lek slave escaping, training, building up resources, then returning to her master to kill him and free her slave sisters. Whereupon the group of them could go roaring across the galaxy together, busting open brothels and burning down sail barges to end the problem of Twi’lek slavery. It’d be half George Miller, half Quentin Tarantino, and all Twi’lek. [Tasha Robinson]

11. Characters: Lumpy and Itchy
Film Title: Death Comes To Life Day


Few properties within the Star Wars universe have been quite so reviled as the infamous Star Wars Holiday Special, a post-New Hope, pre-Empire Strikes Back endeavor that even George Lucas has called a travesty. But redemption is nigh for Chewbacca’s son, Lumpy, who—in the absence of his father Chewbacca, still busy fighting alongside Han Solo against Imperial forces—must wage a personal war of his own. Itchy, the elderly Wookiee patriarch, has been battling senility for some time, slowly losing control of his faculties. So when Lumpy stumbles on a message recorded by Itchy when he was still in his right mind, he learns that his grandfather has assigned him a final task—one to be executed on Life Day—for which he is unprepared: To put Itchy down and end his suffering. [Will Harris]

12. Character: Mon Mothma
Film Title: The Coruscant Conspiracy


Both the Star Wars original trilogy and its prequels focused on first families of the Force, with magic sword-wielding kids running around having adventures. Yet this also ended up leaving world-building gaps, primarily in the decades between the trilogies when the Rebellion took root, leading to the civil war of Episode IV. So let’s get a political thriller, set in those intervening years, focused on Mon Mothma, the enigmatic, alliterative political leader of the Rebellion. Let’s see some hushed conversations in inconspicuous office buildings alongside our action-packed getaway sequences, and flesh out Star Wars’ politics as well as one of its powerful female characters. [Rowan Kaiser]

13. Character: The exogorth
Film Title: The Brave Little Space Slug


Everyone remembers the giant space slug that devoured the Millennium Falcon in The Empire Strikes Back. But the beast wasn’t always so monstrous. In fact, he was once a runt, overshadowed by the strength of his twin brother, despite both slugs being the same size. With his spunky mynock sidekick in tow, the exogorth sets out to eat every space mineral in sight, find an asteroid to call home, and even take on a colossal space wasp that threatens his family. By the end of this animated adventure, the protagonist has not only grown in size, but in courage as well. [Dan Caffrey]

14. Character: Tauntauns
Film Title: The Lost Valley Of Hoth


Tauntauns are a peaceful species, content to spend their days playing, feasting on frost fungus, and headbutting over new mates. But when a clan of wampas encroaches on their territory and starts picking them off in the night, one family sets off in search for a new home. Little do they know that they’re being pursued by a rogue wampa, which makes Hoth’s rapidly dropping temperatures and formidable mountain ranges all the more treacherous. In the vein of Quest For Fire, the film contains no English or subtitles, opting instead for a primal language specific to the tauntauns. [Dan Caffrey]

15. Character: Leia Organa
Film Title: Star Wars: The Revolution


Before she hid the Death Star’s plans in R2-D2, Leia Organa was a revolutionary who led the Rebels against the totalitarian Empire. Her pivotal role isn’t as flashy on screen as Luke’s and Han’s Death Star-exploding whooping and hollering. But she’ll get her day in her own movie, starring as a charismatic leader who champions the underdogs, fighting to overthrow a corrupt government and the dark side. Plus, seeing her beginnings on Alderaan will make that planet’s explosion so much more poignant. [Caitlin PenzeyMoog]

16. Character: Shaak Ti
Film Title: The Ordeal


Not every Jedi who strays from the order follows the path of the Sith. Set before the Clone Wars, The Ordeal follows Jedi master Shaak Ti in the wake of an illegal mission that resulted in the death of innocents and damaged her connection to the Force. The Jedi Council sentences Shaak Ti to 12 seemingly impossible tasks across the galaxy. Only by succeeding at each can she atone for her crime. From subduing great beasts to curing a mystical plague that afflicts an Outer Rim world, these tasks are all that stand between the disgraced Jedi and regaining harmony with the Force. [Nick Wanserski]

17. Character: Jabba The Hutt
Film Title: Crimes Of The Hutt


Jabba the Hutt may appear to enjoy a life of leisure and occasional torture in Return Of The Jedi, but it took a lot of hustle (especially for someone without any feet) for him to become the vile gangster known and feared throughout the galaxy. Crimes Of The Hutt, shot on film with rich Gordon Willis shadows, traces Jabba’s trail of slime to his humble beginnings. From there, the film follows his rise to power, viewed through the eyes of his trusted adviser and lifelong confidant, Salacious B. Crumb. [Jesse Hassenger]

18. Character: Malakili the rancor keeper
Film Title: Malakili And The Rancor


When Malakili’s ship crash-lands on the rancor-populated planet of Dathomir, the accident separates a young rancor from its parents. Feeling sorry for the youth, Malakili ends up befriending the very creature he’s supposed to capture, causing much disapproval from his shipmates. As the two of them flee from the other humans on a cross-country chase, their bond becomes unbreakable, and soon enough, this wilderness adventure has transformed Malakili from a rancor hunter to a rancor keeper. [Dan Caffrey]

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