- "If there's a bright center to the universe, you're on the planet that it's farthest from."
- ―Luke Skywalker
|Aliases:||Tattoine (common mis-spelling)|
|Galaxy:||Star Wars Galaxy|
|Region:||Outer Rim Territories|
|1st appearance:||Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (1977)|
Tatooine is a fictional planet and one of the provincial settings featured in the Star Wars mythos. It first appeared in the 1977 film Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope and was the first location featured in the movie. Tatooine was presented as an arid, desert world populated by human settlers, moisture farmers, traders, smugglers, the diminutive scavengers known as Jawas and the more surly tribal savages, the Tusken Raiders. Early drafts of the Star Wars script identified the planet as Utapau, but the name was eventually changed to Tatooine. Creator George Lucas always kept the name Utapau in his notes and eventually presented it as a separate world altogether nearly thirty years later in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. Principal shooting for the Tatooine scenes were conducted in Tunisia. For the desert setting featured in Return of the Jedi, Lucas chose to film in the Yuma Desert in California.
Tatooine is a planet located in the binary star system known as the Tatoo system in the Arkanis sector. It is considered an Outer Rim world with a distance of 43,000 light years from the Galactic Core. It is the first planet orbiting the twin stars Tatoo I and Tatoo II (also referred to as G1 and G2).  Tatooine has three natural satellites identified as Ghomrassen, Guermessa and Chenini. A day on Tatooine is measured as 23 standard hours and a year consists of 304 local days.
Thousands of years ago, the planet Tatooine was once a lush, tropical paradise, teeming with jungles, lakes and river basins. The only known native species on the planet at the time were the Kumumgah. A conquering race known as the Rakata invaded Tatooine and absorbed it into its ever-growing Infinite Empire. The Kumumgah eventually rebelled against the Rakatan slavers and as consequence for their actions, the Rakata initiated an intense firebombing campaign against them. The power of their weapons was so intense that it nearly obliterated the entire planet, transmogrifying its verdant jungles into a barren sea of fused glass. Over the span of millennia, the glass topography dissolved, turning the planet into a desert wasteland. The Kumumgah eventually split into two distinctive species; the Ghorfa and the Jawas. While the Jawas remained a somewhat passive race, the Ghorfa were savage hunters. They eventually evolved into the modern-day Tusken Raiders. 
Some 4,200 years prior to the Battle of Yavin, human settlers colonized tatooine and established the mining outpost known as Anchorhead. Companies such as the Czerka Corporation attempted to develop facilities at Anchorhead, but often abandoned the planet due to the high cost of transporting heavy machinery and the poor quality of the ore they had found. It was not uncommon for such companies to leave a great deal of equipment behind. Scavenger races like the Ghorfa and the Jawas would often salvage abandoned equipment for a variety of uses. In fact, it was the presence of these early settlers that provoked societal change in the Ghorfan culture, prompting them to evolve into the modern day Tusken Raiders. The Jawas, more timid and meek than their Ghorfan brethren, also possessed greater mechanical aptitude and were able to repurpose old equipment for their personal needs such as the Sandcrawler mining squad vehicles.
In 4,000 BBY, a Jedi knight from Tatoonine named Sidrona Diath was elected as a senator to the Galactic Republic and Tatooine received official representation in the senate. He quickly rose through the political structure of the Republic and became Supreme Chancellor.
Following the end of the Great Sith War in 3,996 BBY, the Jedi Council engaged in a series of minor skirmishes which came to be known as "The Great Hunt". Their goal involved the tracking and destruction of a species of creature known as the Terentateks, which possessed the ability to feed off the blood of Force-sensitive individuals. A trio of Jedi Knights named Guun Han Saresh, Shaela Nur and Duron Qel-Droma landed on Tatooine and cleansed the planet of the Terentatek infestation.
During the latter years of the Old Republic, there was very little interest in colonizing or expanding Republic law to the Tatoo system. As such, planets within the system were dominated by criminal enterprises, mostly controlled by the Hutts. Slavery was a common practice on Hutt-controlled worlds and crime lords purchased and sold human merchandise as easily as they would sell a landspeeder. There were many slave settlements located on Tatooine, particularly in heavy population centers such as Mos Espa. Two of the most powerful Hutt crime lords on Tatooine were Gardulla the Hutt and the legendary Jabba the Hutt.
In 32 BBY, a Naboo royal starship carrying Queen Amidala, her Jedi entourage Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi and the expatriated Gungan Jar Jar Binks landed on Tatooine to effect repairs to the ship. Qui-Gon, Jar Jar and the Queen's personal servant Padmé Naberrie traveled to the space port of Mos Espa in search of materials needed to complete the task. There they met nine-year-old Anakin Skywalker, a slave who worked in a junk shop owned by a Toydarian named Watto. Qui-Gon quickly determined that Anakin was extremely potent with the Force and that might have even been the "Chosen One" spoken of in Jedi prophecy. Through Qui-Gon's urging, young Anakin entered into a podrace at the Boonta Eve Classic. He made a wager with Watto stipulating that should Anakin win the race, the Toydarian would be obligated to set him free. Though Anakin had yet to realize it, his victory at the Boonta Eve Classic proved to be one of the major turning points in his life. Free from slavery, Qui-Gon took him back to the Jedi Temple at Coruscant to train him as a Jedi. 
Anakin's mother, Shmi Skywalker, was still a slave to Watto. In the intervening years, Watto eventually sold Shmi to a moisture farmer named Cliegg Lars who set her free. Cliegg and Shmi fell in love and were soon married. Shmi went to live with him at his moisture farm with his son Owen (born from a previous marriage). One morning, Shmi went out to pick vaporator mushrooms from the moisture vaporators when a clan of Tusken Raiders attacked and abducted her. She was taken back to one of their camps and held captive. Cliegg put together a search team, but were unable to locate her. After a month, he resigned himself to the idea that his wife was dead. Lightyears away on the planet Coruscant, Anakin Skywalker, now a Jedi, had visions of his mother's torment. Along with Padmé, whom he was now romantically linked to, he returned to Tatooine and met Cliegg and Owen Lars. Taking a swoop bike, Anakin set out in search of his mother. He discovered her beaten and severely dehydrated in one of the Raiders' tents. Shmi was only moments away from death, but she held on long enough to tell her son how much she loved him. The trauma of watching his mother die in his arms was too much for Anakin and he brutally slaughtered every Tusken Raider in the camp with his lightsaber. Wrapping up his mother's remains, he brought her back to the Lars homestead so she could be given a proper burial. Anakin and Padmé left Tatooine shortly thereafter. 
Two years later, Anakin Skywalker fell to the Dark Side of the Force and assumed the Sith name of Darth Vader. Padmé, now his wife, was pregnant with Anakin's children. Padmé died in childbirth on Polis Massa, but her twin children Luke and Leia were left in the care of Obi-Wan Kenobi and a senator from Alderaan named Bail Antilles. Antilles adopted the girl, Leia, while Kenobi brought Luke to live with Owen Lars and his wife Beru on Tatooine. Owen and Beru raised Luke as if he were their own child, but Owen, aware of what became of his father, shielded Luke from ever learning the truth about Anakin's treachery. Luke grew up believing that his father was a navigator on a spice freighter. 
The birth of Luke and Leia was punctuated by an event of even greater galactic significance than the fall of Anakin Skywalker. It was at this time that Republic Supreme Chancellor Palpatine declared a New Order and established the Galactic Empire. During the rise of the Galactic Empire under Emperor Palpatine, a moderate Imperial presence was established in the Tatoo system, but Palpatine was careful not to do anything that might destabilize the socio-political structure of the Hutts and their business networks. Palpatine monitored the busy trade routes and set up military garrisons outside of Anchorhead and Mos Eisley on Tatooine.
Luke meanwhile, unaware of the true atrocities being committed by the Empire, dreamed of one day leaving Tatooine and joining the Imperial Academy so he could become a star pilot. Owen however, was careful to keep Luke close to home. Luke worked hard maintaining the moisture farm Owen had inherited from his father and the older man always found ways to keep Luke's "feet on the ground". Citing how much he needed Luke's help on the farm, Owen kept making empty promises that he would let him go to the academy the following year.
Outside of hard work on the farm, Luke was not dissimilar to any other ambitious teenager growing up on Tatooine. He enjoyed spending time with his friends Camie and Laze "Fixer" Loneozner at Toshi Station in Anchorhead and he liked racing T-16 Skyhoppers with his best friend Biggs Darklighter.
In 0 BBY, the planet Tatooine found itself serving as a keystone to a series of events that would result in a major victory for the Alliance to Restore the Republic against the evil Empire. An escape pod, jettisoned from an Alliance ship and carrying two seemingly indiscriminate droids landed in the Dune Sea. One of the robots was a Protocol Droid named C-3PO. The other was an astromech droid designated R2-D2. Artoo-Detoo possessed a copy of a stolen technical readout to the Empire's latest super-weapon, a space station known as the Death Star. They were both captured by a clan of Jawas and sold to Owen Lars. While cleaning up the droids, Luke discovered a pre-recorded hologram message from Leia Organa to Obi-Wan Kenobi. At this point, Luke could never imagine that the image he was looking was that of his sister. When Artoo ran away from the Lars homestead in search of Kenobi, Luke and C-3PO gave chase. They tracked him to the Jundland Wastes where they were set upon by a group of Tusken Raiders led by clan leader URoRRuR'R'R. Kenobi arrived on the scene and scared the Tuskens off by mimicking the howl of a Krayt dragon. Taking Luke and the droids back to his hut, he received Leia's message and realized that it was now time for Skywalker to leave Tatooine and join the Rebellion. Kenobi didn't reveal the entire truth about Luke's father save that he was once a Jedi knight and "the best star pilot in the galaxy". He introduced young Luke to the concept of the Force.
The Empire meanwhile, sent the Desert Sands Sandtrooper unit down to Tatooine to recover the droids. The unit split into three squads and canvassed the Dune Sea. Zeta Squadron, led by the sadistic Mod Terrik found the Jawa tribe that had temporarily taken possession of the droids. After learning that the Jawas sold the droids to Owen Lars, the Sandtroopers slaughtered the entire tribe and made it appear as if the attack had been the work of Tusken Raiders. They then followed the trail to the Lars moisture farm where Terrik ordered the execution of Owen and Beru Lars. This incident convinced Sandtrooper Davin Felth that he was fighting for the wrong side and he defected from the Stormtrooper Corps to join the Rebel Alliance soon after. 
When Luke learned about the death of his aunt and uncle, he decided to accompany Obi-Wan on his new mission to Alderaan. With the droids in tow, they traveled to Mos Eisley space port in search of a pilot. Inside a dark cantina, they met a smuggler/freighter pilot named Han Solo and his first mate Chewbacca the wookiee. After a few harrowing incidents involving a surly patron named Ponda Baba and an ambitious bounty hunter named Greedo, Luke and the others managed to leave Tatooine. 
Some four years later, a bounty hunter named Boba Fett had succeeded in capturing Han Solo. Carrying Solo's body frozen in carbonite, he delivered him to Jabba the Hutt at his desert palace. Luke, Chewbacca, Leia and one of Solo's old acquaintences Lando Calrissian initiated a complex plan to infiltrate Jabba's cartel to free Solo. They succeeded in freeing Han from the carbonite, but were captured by Jabba's henchmen moments later. For their treachery, Jabba sentenced them to be cast into the Pit of Carkoon, the nesting place of a voracious carnivorous creature known as a sarlacc. Luke had planned for such a trap and once he was able to access his lightsaber, he was able to fight back and save his friends. During the battle, it was believed that Boba Fett met an untimely end when he fell into the maw of the sarlacc, but Fett managed to survive and emerged from the sarlacc several months later. It was actually Leia Organa however, who had the greater impact on events at this time as single-handedly killed Jabba the Hutt by strangling him to death with a slave chain. The death of Jabba sent shock waves throughout the criminal underworld as dozens of would be gangsters and warlords rushed in to fill the vacuum left behind from the crime lord's demise. 
Points of Interest Edit
Towns and Cities Edit
Films that take place on Tatooine Edit
Original films & Prequel Edit
- Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
- Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
- Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace
- Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones
- Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
Spin-off films Edit
TV shows that take place in Tatooine Edit
Characters from Tatooine Edit
Notes & Trivia Edit
- Of the pre-Disney era film series, the only theatrically released movie that Tatooine does not make an appearance in is Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. It even makes appearances in the 1978 television movie, The Star Wars Holiday Special and the 2008 computer animated feature film, Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
See also Edit
The World of Star Wars
Star Wars miscellaneous
External Links Edit
- ↑ Star Wars (novelization)
- ↑ Star Wars: The New Essential Guide to Alien Species
- ↑ Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace
- ↑ Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones
- ↑ Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
- ↑ When the Desert Wind Turns: The Stormtrooper's Tale
- ↑ Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
- ↑ Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi