Star Wars

Star Wars
Star Wars Logo.svg
The Star Wars franchise's logo, introduced in the original film A New Hope
Created by George Lucas
Original work Star Wars (1977)
Print publications
Novel(s) List of novels
Comics List of comics
Films and television


Anthology films:

Animated films:

Television series


TV Specials:

Video game(s) List of video games
Radio program(s) Star Wars
Original music Music of Star Wars
  • Action figures
  • Die-casts and model toys
  • Chess and soldiers
  • Other
Theme parks

Star Wars is an American epic space opera franchise, centered on a film series created by George Lucas. It depicts the adventures of various characters "a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away".

The franchise began in 1977 with the release of the film Star Wars (later subtitled Episode IV: A New Hope in 1981), [2] [3] which became a worldwide pop culture phenomenon. It was followed by the successful sequels The Empire Strikes Back (1980) and Return of the Jedi (1983); these three films constitute the original Star Wars trilogy. A prequel trilogy was released between 1999 and 2005, which received mixed reactions from both critics and fans. A sequel trilogy began in 2015 with the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. All seven films were nominated for Academy Awards (with wins going to the first two films) and have been commercial successes, with a combined box office revenue of over $7.5 billion, [4] making Star Wars the third highest-grossing film series. [5] Spin-off films include the animated Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008) and Rogue One (2016), the latter of which is the first in an upcoming series of anthology films.

The series has spawned an extensive media franchise including books, television series, computer and video games, and comic books, all of which take place within the same continuity as the films, resulting in significant development of the series's fictional universe, with the non-canonical works falling under the defunct Star Wars Legends label. Star Wars also holds a Guinness World Records title for the "Most successful film merchandising franchise. In 2015, the total value of the Star Wars franchise was estimated at USD $42 billion, [6] [7] making Star Wars the second highest-grossing media franchise of all time.

In 2012, The Walt Disney Company bought Lucasfilm for $4.06 billion and earned the distribution rights to all subsequent Star Wars films, beginning with the release of The Force Awakens in 2015. [8] The former distributor, 20th Century Fox, retains the physical distribution rights for the first two Star Wars trilogies, owns permanent rights for the original 1977 film and continues to hold the rights for the prequel trilogy and the first two sequels to A New Hope until May 2020. [9] [10] Walt Disney Studios owns digital distribution rights to all the Star Wars films, excluding A New Hope. [10] [11]


The events depicted in the Star Wars franchise take place in an unnamed fictional galaxy at an undetermined point in the distant past. Many species of alien creatures (often humanoid) are depicted. Robotic droids are also commonplace and are generally built to serve their owners. Space travel is common, and many planets in the galaxy are members of a single galactic government. In the prequel trilogy, this is depicted in the form of the Galactic Republic; at the end of the prequel trilogy and throughout the original trilogy, this government is the Galactic Empire. Preceding and during the sequel trilogy, this government is the New Republic.

One of the prominent elements of Star Wars is " the Force", an omnipresent energy that can be harnessed by those with that ability, known as Force-sensitives. It is described in the first produced film as "an energy field created by all living things [that] surrounds us, penetrates us, [and] binds the galaxy together." [12] The Force allows users to perform various supernatural feats (such as telekinesis, clairvoyance, precognition, and mind control) and can amplify certain physical traits, such as speed and reflexes; these abilities vary between characters and can be improved through training. While the Force can be used for good, known as the light side, it also has a dark side that, when pursued, imbues users with hatred, aggression, and malevolence.

The films feature the Jedi, who adhere to the light side of the Force to serve as peacekeepers and guardians, and the Sith, who use the dark side of the Force for evil in an attempt to destroy the Jedi Order and the Republic and rule the galaxy for themselves. The sequel trilogy introduces the Knights of Ren, an order of practitioners of the dark side of the Force aligned with the First Order.

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