Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace

Question: I've read that Prince Xizor was thought to be at the pod race. I know that he's probably not there in the movie, but does anyone know if putting him in was ever considered?

Answer: The model of the pod race stands in the long shot used mostly colored Q-tips (cotton buds) as audience members, but tiny Micro-Machines action figures were also used, including the figures of Prince Xizor and Boba Fett. They can't be seen in the film, but you can see a close-up of the model in the "Making of" book.

Sierra1 Premium member

Question: Is there any reason for Darth Maul only blinking once (like an ability that his species has to keep his eyes open for a while), or does the movie just happen to only show him blinking once?

Answer: An enemy just looks more menacing if he's always staring you down. I suppose that makes it more of a "Sith" thing than a "species" thing.

Phixius Premium member

Question: How did the droid in the beginning of the film know that Qui-gon and Obi-wan were both Jedi?

Craig Bryant

Chosen answer: Because word had arrived that two Jedi were arriving to handle the peace negotiations. When the two delegates then arrive, and both of them are wearing the distinct Jedi robes, with lightsabers in their belts, it is not exactly a difficult conclusion to draw.

Twotall

Question: What is the relationship between the Trade Federation and the Senate? I mean I know that the Senate is supposed to be made up of representatives from planets in the Republic. But the TF also have representatives there. But the TF isn't just one planet is it? I thought that it was a company/organisation as such that encompassed lots of different planets (like the Federation in Star Trek)?

Craig Bryant

Chosen answer: The Trade Federation started out as a loose confederation of merchants and shipping providers who banded together to ensure that they had effective control over trade routes throughout the galaxy. Under the leadership of the Neimoidians, they took precautions to maintain that control, including a substantial military to protect their interests. This ultimately gave them enough political clout to achieve representation in the Senate at the same level as a member world.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: Is it known why the TF followed the orders of Palpatine (when he looks like the emperor)? I believe that they set-up the blockade and invasion to try to get Amadala to sign the treaty to joint he TF. But still why would they do it just on his orders?

Craig Bryant

Chosen answer: Palpatine (or Darth Sideous as the TF call him) is a master of using people to further his plans. The leaders of the TF are greedy and unscrupulous. Palpatine needs to destabalise the workings of the Senate enough to maneuver his way into being elected as Chancellor, so he presents the TF with a chance to make a lot of money by exploiting Naboo, knowing that the resulting conflict will generate sympathy for him in the senate, as a Naboo.

roboc

Question: Is Senator Palpatine the Senator of Naboo? If he is is he a native born 'Naboo-ian' as such?

Craig Bryant

Chosen answer: He is indeed the Senator from Naboo and according to the official Star Wars databank, was born there.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: I have read that this film was not received well among SW fans. I first saw this in the cinema and thought it was great and even now I still consider it a really good film and I love all of the films as a whole. I am just wondering why it is considered not as good as the rest?

Craig Bryant

Chosen answer: A lot of people felt that the more political nature of the film was inferior to the more swashbuckling feel of the original trilogy - after all, a trade dispute isn't inherently as entertaining as a rebellion against an evil Empire. They felt that the dialogue was rather clunky and delivered in a somewhat wooden fashion, which is in many ways a not unfair point, although the scripting accusation applies equally to the original trilogy (Lucas simply isn't a good writer of dialogue). In the end, the main problem was that, over the years, the original trilogy have gained an almost mythical status and have a substantial nostalgia factor, to the extent that a number of fans at the time were quoted as saying that the release of a new Star Wars film was to be a defining moment in their lives. The expectation levels were so high that it would have been impossible for any film, no matter how good, to live up to them - disappointment was inevitable.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: Darth Maul had to feel that Anakin was very Force-sensitive, so why would he almost hit him with his speeder (it looks intentional)? And why wouldn't he tell Darth Sidious about a very Force-strong boy being with the Jedi?

Answer: There is nothing to indicate that a Force-user should automatically detect Force sensitivity in others. In fact, in the books it is made very clear that this is not the case (as Luke has to discover a way for himself to detect potential Jedi candiates). As Anakin did not use the Force while Maul was present, Maul would not pick up any indication that Anakin could use it, and would therefore not suspect Anakin to be any more than a slave.

Twotall

Question: Does Darth Maul know that Darth Sidious is Palpatine?

Answer: Yes, Darth Maul did know Palpatine's true nature. Palpatine/Darth Sidious was his master. Also, in the movie, they have a brief discussion on the balcony outside Palpatine's office.

Bruce Minnick

Question: If Padmé is Queen Amidala's name, shouldn't all security forces know that it was her instead of the decoy? Wouldn't it be better to hide that name too?

Answer: It's safe to say that all her security staff will be aware of the decoy procedure - otherwise, they wouldn't know who to protect if things really went wrong. As for outsiders, Queen (later Senator) Amidala is her formal name and would be the one that everyone was familiar with; her birth name of Padme Naberrie is unlikely to be generally known.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: What is that red dot that is on Anakin's goggles when he is racing his pod? (It isn't there all the time, but if you look for it you can't miss it.)

Answer: It's the reflection off the instrument panel in front of him.

Question: What species is Darth Maul? Is he just a human severely disfigured by the dark side? Is that just make up to make himself look scary? Or is he some strange type of being?

Answer: He is a Zabrak, a alien species. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darth_Maul.

Myridon

Question: Is the young green alien who is cheers Anakin on at the pod races the same one who confronts Han Solo in Episode 4?

Answer: Technically it wasn't, but during principal photography of the movie, it indeed was meant to be the same creature (Greedo). In one of the deleted scenes, the green alien picks a fight with Anakin, accusing him of cheating to win the pod race. Qui-gon warns young Greedo that he'll get into trouble if he keeps picking fights, and sure enough, he is blasted to pieces by Han Solo in Episode IV (again, that was the original plan). However, since the scene never made it into the movie, we are just left to assume it's an alien of the same race.

Matty Blast

Question: After reaching Coruscant, why does Qui-Gon tell Chancellor Valorum that he needs to speak with the Jedi Council? Wouldn't Qui-Gon simply report to the Temple once he arrived?

Cubs Fan

Chosen answer: Valorum sent Qui-Gon to Naboo as his personal ambassador, so the Chancellor would expect to discuss the situation on their return. Qui-Gon is excusing himself in order to bring the news of the Sith reappearance to the Jedi Council as soon as possible.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: The opening synopsis says that the Trade Federation blocked all shipping to Naboo. Do we know what the shipments consisted of? Was it raw materials, food, machinery, or are we not really meant to know?

Matty Blast

Chosen answer: Put purely and simply, we have no particular need to know for the purposes of the plot. That being said, Naboo seems to be a largely pastoral world, so is likely to be self-sufficient on the food front, but may require the import of more industrially based goods, like machinery and so forth. Books related to the series suggest that Naboo has a highly profitable plasma-fuel industry - presumably fuel shipments would also be blockaded, depriving the planet of vital income.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: Is Senator Palpatine aware of Queen Amidala's use of decoys to protect herself?

Cubs Fan

Chosen answer: There's no indication one way or another. It's not particularly likely that he's ever been briefed on her security arrangements, but he's familiar enough with Amidala that his force abilities would be able to tell him that it wasn't her if he encountered her decoy at some point.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: Many of the blasters in the Star Wars films are based on existing small arms, such as the iconic German Mauser for Han's pistol and the British Sterlings for stormtrooper and rebel guns. Then they just add on a bunch of attachments, which isn't all that uncommon in sci-fi in general (ex. Robocop's Auto 9 & the pulse rifles in Terminator)The Naboo security looked like they were using some kind of target pistol (identification?) and Calico submachine guns. The main one I couldn't figure out was the Battledroid blaster, which did need physical props since Panaka's squad picks some up and Padme fires one in AotC. Is this one actually based on an existing weapon? It kinda looks like a sterling, but the handle is completely different.

Answer: The Battle Droid rifle was designed by ILM hardware designer Jay Schuster to look like a precursor to the E-11 rifle used by Imperial Stormtroopers, so the Sterling resemblance is there. In fact, the handle appears to have been based on or molded from the Kenner Stormtrooper Rifle toy!

Sierra1 Premium member

Question: Does 1138 appear at all in this movie? I don't remember seeing it.

Answer: At the end of the film, after Anakin destroys the control ship and all the wardroids shut down, it can be seen written on the back of one of the droids that were guarding Jar-Jar and Captain Tarpals.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: What was the original plan of the Trade Federation and Darth Sidious? I saw TPM six times in the theaters and a few times at home and I still don't know why they were blockading Naboo. What was with the treaty that they wanted Amidala to sign? If their plan had worked and she signed this treaty that gave them control over the planet what good would that do?

Charles Fraser

Chosen answer: You have to bear in mind that the Trade Federation and Darth Sidious probably have very different views of what the plan actually is. From the point of view of the Trade Federation, they're probably under the impression that the aim is to get the treaty signed, with the likely effect of bringing Naboo into the Trade Federation. This would allow them to exploit the natural resources of the place, and benefit from any trade carried out from that planet. Sidious, on the other hand, doesn't care in the slightest about the Trade Federation - he has carefully manipulated the situation to get Amidala to call for the vote that will remove Chancellor Valorum from office and force the election of a new chancellor, allowing Palpatine (who either is Sidious or is some sort of clone under his control) to advance to the leadership of the Senate. That's pretty much the sum total of his plan, which, as we see, is a complete success.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: When asked if she would allow a group from the senate to go to Naboo and investigate her claims, Amidala says "no" and asks for a vote of no confidence in Chancellor Valorum. Why? Unless I interpreted this incorrectly they were offering to go and look into the situation. Why not say, "great, let's go" and they would have seen what was happening? Also, what would have been an acceptable course of action for her? This didn't make any sense to me.

Charles Fraser

Chosen answer: She was sick and tired of no action being taken. She wanted them to do something about it now, not send people out there to investigate, that would take too much time. This is coupled with the notion that Palpatine was somewhat brainwashing her into believing that Valorum was a poor/incompetent leader, and that following Palpatine's cause/actions was the best way for help.

Timothy Conard
Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace mistake picture

Revealing mistake: When Qui-Gon, Jar-Jar, and Padme are eating at Anakin's house, Anakin's mum pours water for Qui-Gon. But when she gets to Jar-Jar, she tips the pitcher but no water comes out. (00:39:10)

More mistakes in Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace

Qui-Gon Jinn: You must have Jedi reflexes if you race pods.
[Jar Jar tries to grab a piece of fruit with his tounge, but Qui-Gon catches it.]
Qui-Gon Jinn: Don't do that again.

More quotes from Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace

Trivia: Senator Grebleips, who appears when the Queen of Naboo speaks to the senate, is an alien from "E.T." making a cameo appearance. This is after Steven Spielberg ('Grebleips' is 'Spielberg' backwards) included some "Star Wars" references in "E.T."

rockmandrum
More trivia for Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace

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