In the Star Wars movies, we first hear the name "Sidious" used in The Phantom Menace (referring, of course, to Palpatine). Did this name appear earlier in any other media, or was that name created solely for the prequel trilogy?

  • I'm pretty sure that, unlike "Palpatine" which appeared in scripts and novelizations decades before the prequels, "Darth Sidious" actually did first appear in TPM – but it's surprisingly hard to find information about this on google.
    – tobiasvl
    Feb 10, 2017 at 8:42

1 Answer 1


Main Canon

The name Sidious was first used (and first appeared) in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace. It doesn't appear in any earlier Star Wars script, nor in any of the Original Trilogy novelisations written prior to 2014.

Specifically, its first use was in the Terry Brooks novelisation of The Phantom Menace which came out several hours before the film's premiere on the 19th May, 1999.

Gunray made a placating gesture. “Stay calm! I’ll wager the Senate is completely unaware of the supreme chancellor’s moves in this matter. Go. Distract them while I contact Lord Sidious.”


Prior to the film's release the name of Darth Sidious was mentioned in various press articles; a powerful and mysterious character whose power was only exceeded by his mystery.

Darth Sidious (Episode 1). This Sith Lord stays in the shadows as Maul's Mentor. His plan is to take over the republic.

Time Magazine - Cinema: A Galactic Guide - Apr. 26, 1999

  • The name "Sidious" was appearing in press materials weeks or months earlier.
    – Buzz
    May 13, 2017 at 18:25
  • @Buzz - Can you offer any links to this material?
    – Valorum
    May 13, 2017 at 18:47
  • The names appeared in several media venues. One I remember specifically was the Time cover story in the April 26, 1999 issue.
    – Buzz
    May 13, 2017 at 18:53
  • @Buzz - A really good find. I've added it in.
    – Valorum
    May 13, 2017 at 19:10

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