The opening crawl is an iconic event in every Star Wars Episode. Through Episode I THE PHANTOM MENACE, Episode II ATTACK OF THE CLONES, Episode III REVENGE OF THE SITH, STAR WARS, Episode V THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK and Episode VI RETURN OF THE JEDI, every live-action Star Wars film has included an expository crawl of text before the story commences to bring the audience up-to-date on galactic events. Each opening crawl reveals the Episode number – e.g. “Episode V” – and the subtitle in capitals – e.g. “THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK”. The opening crawl text is divided into three paragraphs, describing what instigated the events of the film, how it developed, and how its resolution triggered the first act. None of the odd-numbered Episodes (Episode I THE PHANTOM MENACE, Episode III REVENGE OF THE SITH and Episode VI RETURN OF THE JEDI) featured capitalised pronouns, but all opening crawls were yellow. Until Episode V THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, every opening crawl ended with a three-dot ellipses (“…”). Whether Star Wars: the Force Awakens (J. J. AbramsLawrence Kasdan and Michael Arndt) – the Saga’s intended Episode VII – will continue with a three dot ellipses is unknown, but the three-dot version is considered correct among scholars, unlike the “informal” four-dot ellipses (“….”), so that’s the version I’ll be sticking with. STAR WARS Episode IV A NEW HOPE From the Journal of the Whills screenwriter George Lucas describes the creation of the opening crawl as such:

“The crawl is such a hard thing because you have to be careful that you’re not using too many words that people don’t understand. It’s like a poem. I showed the very first crawl to a bunch of friends of mine in the 1970s. It went on for six paragraphs with four sentences each. Brian De Palma was there, and he threw his hands up in the air and said, ‘George, you’re out of your mind! Let me sit down and write this for you.’ He helped me chop it down into the form that exists today.”

In the original screenplays, the opening crawls were presented as such:


(THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK didn’t feature the opening crawl in its screenplay.)

Star Wars: the Force Awakens will probably include an opening crawl. We don’t know it will, but it most likely will. But we still don’t know what it could be. Some fans have already made their predictions, and now I will be making mine. Just what will Star Wars: the Force Awakens‘ opening crawl be? ….

A long time ago in a galaxy far,

far away….


Episode VII
It is a period of uprising.
Resistant spaceships, striking
from a hidden base, have won
their first victory against
the evil First Order.

During the battle, Resistant
spies managed to steal secret
plans to the Order’s
ultimate weapon, STAR KILLER
BASE, a weaponised planet
with enough power
to destroy an entire system.

Pursued by the Order’s
sinister agents, stormtrooper
Finn escorts a pilot to
Kylo Ren’s landing craft,
possessor of the
ancient weapon that can free
their people and restore
freedom to the galaxy….

Published by Alexander Sigsworth

Writing about Herobrine in The Characters That Define Us at Normal Happenings. Profile photo chosen for Gamers Blog Party: Summer 2019 at Later Levels. Known as the Purple Prose Mage at the Well-Red Mage.

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