|Star Wars character|
Samuel L. Jackson as Mace Windu.
|First appearance||The Phantom Menace (1999)|
|Last appearance||The Clone Wars |
|Created by||George Lucas|
|Portrayed by||Samuel L. Jackson|
Mace Windu is a fictional character in the Star Wars franchise, portrayed by actor Samuel L. Jackson in the prequel films and voiced by Terrence C. Carson in other projects. He appears as a human male, Master of the Jedi High Council and one of the last members of the order's upper echelons before the Galactic Republic's fall. He is the Council's primary liaison, although the Clone Wars caused him to question his most firmly held beliefs.
Several early incarnations of the character who would become Mace Windu were developed in the original Star Wars drafts as the narrator, Princess Leia's brother and Luke Skywalker's friend. Through the process of redrafting and copyediting, his character was removed from the original trilogy, but was reintroduced in 1994 when series creator George Lucas began writing the prequel trilogy.
The character's purple lightsaber was a personal request Jackson made to Lucas as a quid pro quo for appearing in the films, as well as a way of making the character unique and easily distinguishable. Although his weapon is not seen onscreen until Episode II - Attack of the Clones, action figures released for Episode I - The Phantom Menace pair Mace with a blue lightsaber.
Introduced in Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace, Windu appears as the Master of the Jedi High Council. The maverick Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn comes before the Council and offers to train Anakin Skywalker, believing that the boy is the Chosen One of Jedi prophecy. Windu and the other Council members refuse, deeming Anakin too old and full of fear. After the corrupt Trade Federation is defeated and Obi-Wan Kenobi defeats Sith Lord Darth Maul, who also kills Qui-Gon, Windu realizes that the Sith have returned, and he and the Council reluctantly allow Obi-Wan to train Anakin in Qui-Gon's stead.
In Episode II: Attack of the Clones, Windu initially refuses to believe that the assassination attempt on Senator Padmé Amidala on Coruscant was authorized by former Jedi master Count Dooku, the leader of a galactic Separatist movement. Having learned of Obi-Wan's whereabouts on Geonosis, Windu arrives to save Obi-Wan, Padmé and Anakin from being executed at Dooku's order. In the ensuing battle, Windu kills bounty hunter Jango Fett, the template for the Republic's army of clone troopers, and leads them and a cadre of Jedi to victory in a battle with Dooku's forces. At the end of the film, with the Clone Wars begun, Windu resolves to keep a closer eye on the increasingly corrupt Galactic Senate.
In Episode III - Revenge of the Sith, Windu and the other members of the Jedi Council are concerned that the Republic's Supreme Chancellor, Palpatine, may not relinquish his emergency powers when the Clone Wars end. Their suspicions only grow when the Senate grants Palpatine a vote on the Jedi Council by appointing Anakin as his personal representative. The Council grants Anakin a seat, but denies him the rank of Jedi Master and orders him to spy on Palpatine, shaking Anakin's faith in the Jedi. After Obi-Wan kills Separatist leader General Grievous, Anakin informs Windu of Palpatine's true identity as the Sith Lord Darth Sidious, the mastermind of the war. Windu and three other Jedi Masters attempt to arrest Palpatine, but the Sith Lord swiftly kills Windu's companions and engages him in a lightsaber duel. Windu subdues Palpatine by knocking away his lightsaber and deflecting the Sith Lord's Force lightning back into his face, causing Palpatine's true form to show. Anakin arrives and pleads with Windu not to kill Palpatine, but Windu counters that Palpatine controls the Senate and the courts, and is therefore too dangerous to be left alive. Just as Windu is about to strike, Anakin intervenes on Palpatine's behalf, severing Windu's lightsaber hand and leaving him helpless. Palpatine then tortures Windu with another blast of Force lightning, then defenestrates him sending Windu falling to his death. Palpatine uses Windu's death to start Order 66 and murder the vast majority of the Jedi, reducing their numbers to fewer than 100.
Windu makes his final film appearance in the 2008 animated film Star Wars: The Clone Wars, set between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. He plays a supporting role as a general in the Republic's clone forces. He is voiced by Samuel L. Jackson, who portrayed the character in the live-action films.
In Star Wars: The Clone Wars (set between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith), Mace Windu has a supporting role. As in the film, he is a general of the Republic's clone army. He is voiced by Terrence "T.C." Carson.
In 2017, Marvel released Star Wars: Jedi of the Republic - Mace Windu, a 5-issue series centered around Windu during the early days of the Clone Wars. He leads a small team of Jedi on a mission to the planet Hissrich, to find out what the Separatists are doing there. During the mission, Windu's faith in the Jedi path is tested by his interactions with two new characters: AD-W4, a mercenary droid with a thirst for murdering Jedi; and Prosset Dibs, a blind Jedi Master who becomes disillusioned with the Jedi Order and turns on Windu. Ultimately, Windu ends up besting both adversaries in single combat, respectively, and his faith in the Jedi way is strengthened by the experience.
In April 2014, most of the licensed Star Wars novels and comics produced since the originating 1977 film Star Wars were rebranded by Lucasfilm as Star Wars Legends and declared non-canon to the franchise. Windu appears extensively in the Star Wars Legends of novels and comic books.
Mace Windu is a supporting character in Genndy Tartakovsky's Star Wars: Clone Wars micro-series, which is set between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. The character's likeness in the series is based on that in The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones. In the first chapters, he defends the grasslands planet Dantooine against a large hovering "fortress", and over the course, he loses his lightsaber, forcing him to instead use a lethal form of unarmed combat powered by the Force. In final chapters, he and fellow Jedi Master Yoda help defend the planet Coruscant from an attack by General Grievous. In the midst of the battle, he realizes that the attack is a ruse to distract the Jedi from Grievous's true objective: to "kidnap" Palpatine. Despite being too late to save the Supreme Chancellor, the Jedi Master uses the Force to crush Grievous's chest, inflicting upon the cyborg general the wheezing, asthmatic cough heard in Revenge of the Sith.
Windu has appeared as a supporting character in Legends/Expanded Universe novels, such as Cloak of Deception, Darth Maul: Shadow Hunter, Rogue Planet, Outbound Flight, The Cestus Deception, Jedi Trial, Yoda: Dark Rendezvous and Labyrinth of Evil.
|Publisher||Del Rey & Random House Audio|
|Hardcover: June 3, 2003|
Paperback: April 23, 2004
|Preceded by||Boba Fett: Hunted|
|Followed by||The Cestus Deception|
Windu is the central character of Matthew Stover's 2004 novel Shatterpoint, taking place six months after Attack of the Clones. Stover based the novel on both Joseph Conrad's novel Heart of Darkness, and its loose adaptation Apocalypse Now. George Lucas wrote the prologue to the novel, and Jonathan Davis reads the audiobook version.
Windu's former Padawan and fellow Jedi Master Depa Billaba has been sent to Windu's homeworld, Haruun Kal, to start a revolution against the Separatist-allied government. Evidence is discovered that Billaba has fallen to the dark side of the Force. Since Windu taught her a special lightsaber combat form, he alone is sent by the Jedi Council to find her. After a fight, he puts Billaba under arrest, and calls a Republic cruiser. It is attacked by Vulture droids and deploys gunships, which battle the droid starfighters with the assistance of clone troopers. Some of the landing craft make it to the surface, and the cruiser defeats the Separatists. Windu uses the gunships to destroy the droid fighters that followed them, then orders the clones to take out a nearby droid control station. The Separatists are forced to surrender to the Republic, and Billaba falls into a vegetative coma. A Republic force stays on the planet to police the unrestful local tribes.
The novel establishes that Windu has the unique talent of seeing "shatterpoints", or faultlines in the Force that could affect the destinies of certain individuals. Mace's shatterpoint ability also enables him to see people's weaknesses, allowing him to exploit their flaws and defeat them. It also explains that Windu is the creator and sole master of a style of lightsaber combat called Vaapad, in which the user skirts dangerously close to the dark side by enjoying the thrill of the fight. All others who attempted to master the form either gave in to the dark side or were unable to properly master the technique. Stover later referenced Windu's unique lightsaber-fighting abilities in his novelization of Revenge of the Sith.
The "Emissaries to Malastare" arc of the Dark Horse comic Star Wars: Republic depicts a Jedi exercise in which the knights swap their weapons, explaining why Windu carried a blue-bladed lightsaber during the The Phantom Menace era.
A Mace Windu action figure was added to the Star Wars Transformers toy line in 2006. It was a remold of the toy first used for Obi-Wan Kenobi. He becomes an Eta-2 Actis-class light interceptor starfighter with Astromech droid R4-M6.