The Star Wars universe is certainly no exception to this, and in fact the term Expanded Universe is used to refer to the entirety of the officially licensed background material produced outside of the (currently, as of the time of this writing) six feature films. While we’re not going to go too in-depth about specific details here, the ghost writer of the novelization of “A New Hope” published the first novel in the Expanded Universe, Splinter of the Mind’s Eye, in 1978 and there were also comics published during this time that contained material set in the Star Wars universe that was not directly originated from the main films. All told, there have been over one hundred novels and multiple comics, animated series, and video games which comprise the Expanded Universe.
The Heir to the Empire trilogy by Timothy Zahn, also known as the Thrawn trilogy based on the name of one of the primary characters, has sold over 15 million copies since its first print, and it was responsible for bringing new interest to the Star Wars universe nearly a decade after Return of the Jedi was released in (1983). Set roughly five years after the death of Emperor Palpatine and the conclusion of Return of the Jedi, it is a direct continuation of the events in Episodes IV, V, and VI, and features many of the characters from the original movies as well as multiple groups of new characters. The surviving forces of the Galactic Empire are now being led by the lone remaining Grand Admiral of the Imperial Fleet, the previously unknown Grand Admiral Thrawn. The Rebel Alliance has now begun to move away from the temporary organization during the rebellion and is attempting to create a new government, the New Republic, to once again bring peace to the galaxy. I’m going to attempt to avoid discussing spoilers here, but that won’t be entirely possible considering these books are now over twenty years old and the characters and subjects contained within have been mentioned elsewhere, some even within Episodes I, II, and III.
|Star Wars: Heir To The Empire (1991)|