89

Who is the official narrator of Star Wars? I.e., who is the one saying "A long long time ago, in a galaxy far far away?"

  • 5
    What if it were Jar Jar... – David Conrad Dec 11 '19 at 17:39
  • Don't you mean Darth Jar Jar? – Gothamite24 Dec 29 '19 at 3:26
103

According to How Star Wars Conquered the Universe, it is none other than R2-D2 himself. The book quotes George Lucas as saying:

“The entire story of Star Wars is actually being recounted to the keeper of the Journal of the Whills—remember that?—a hundred years after the events of Return of the Jedi by none other than R2-D2.” Source

  • 12
    @WGroleau It's not spoken English. Presumably, they're using the same kind of translators Luke has in his X-Wing. – Luaan Dec 9 '19 at 9:24
  • 13
    @WGroleau Computers that can handle English-like text but only have a beeper for sound are known in this galaxy. Maybe the keeper of the Journal let R2 plug into his terminal and upload the entire account, to save having to type it out. Then when he/she/it came to proof-read the entry, they decided to use an old XScreensaver hack as a text viewer... – Pastychomper thanks Monica Dec 9 '19 at 10:01
  • 53
    We'll find out in Episode XII: The Skywalkers Won't Go Away – Machavity Dec 9 '19 at 14:00
  • 52
    Now I hope Episode IX features R2-D2 being blasted off into space, mid credit scenes of him tumbling through the void, and a post-credit scene of him crash-landing on Earth, being found by a young George Lucas, plugging into an IBM SCAMP, and bringing up the word processor: "A long time ago, in a Galaxy far far away..." – Chronocidal Dec 9 '19 at 15:30
  • 11
    @Chronocidal it should have a beep that sounds suspiciously like "SPAAAAAAACE!" when tumbling by the camera then. – Michael Schumacher Dec 9 '19 at 16:19
13

The Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace: Read-Along Story Book-and-Record was narrated by an unnamed member of the Jedi Council. Interestingly, he starts the narration with...

"A LONG TIME AGO IN A GALAXY FAR, FAR AWAY . . ."

...despite the fact that he, presumably, lives in the Galaxy at the time of the events in question.


"We, the members of the Jedi Council, have created this record of those terrible events. This recording device has captured the images and sounds of the struggle so that future generations will remember".

9

In the Disney canon, the Whills write down the Journal of the Whills. Among other things it contains the narration, including "a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away..." and the Episode IV intro crawl. There is no indication that R2-D2 played a role in recounting the story.

This is detailed in the short story Whills. Excerpt from Wookieepedia:

An unidentified Whill opens with the exposition "a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away..."

  • 4
    I don't know how seriously we should take that particular story - it's pretty much played for laughs – NKCampbell Dec 9 '19 at 15:13
  • @NKCampbell That's a good point, perhaps it should be noted in an edit. I should also note in this comment that I haven't actually read the story myself. – August Janse Dec 9 '19 at 15:18
  • How can you say "There is no indication that R2-D2 played a role in recounting the story" when the other answer gives exactly that? Is there a reason we shouldn't believe the author of How Star Wars Conquered the Universe? – Nacht - Reinstate Monica Dec 10 '19 at 1:11
  • 1
    @Nacht-ReinstateMonica The answer specifies "in the Disney canon", which word of a non-Disney source is not. It's a reference to the highest-voted answer to clarify that they aren't both true. Not that there's anything wrong with the other answer. – August Janse Dec 10 '19 at 9:56
  • @NKCampbell that argument can be applied to basically the whole Disney canon. Sadly, it is what it is. – AnalysisStudent0414 Dec 10 '19 at 14:19
5

Voren Na'al

According to the Galaxy Guide 1: A New Hope Rebel-aligned historian Lt. Voren Na'al conducted a series of interviews with the various characters with whom Luke, Leia and Han interacted immediately before and during the Battle of Yavin.

A New Hope (or at least the historical work upon which the film was based) was based on his writings and the implication is that he also wrote the opening scroll since it's quoted in the text.

To: Major Arhurl Hextrophon, Executive Secretary and Master Historian, Alliance High Command
From: Lieutenant Voren Na'al, Assistant Historian
Regarding: Research into the events immediately preceding the Alliance victory at the Battle of Yavin.

Sir: Your notes regarding the events surrounding the Alliance victory at Yavin (for inclusion in the upcoming Official History of the Rebellion, Volume One) are indeed woefully incomplete, as you had predicted.

The final battle is fully documented in the Yavin base computer banks. But the strange tale of the great heroes of the Alliance, namely Commander Skywalker and his associate, remains something of a mystery to most of the support personnel — myself included. When you assigned me the task of backtracking their adventures from Tatooine to Yavin, 1 hoped initially to shed new light on the deeds and accomplishments of the heroes, perhaps making them appear a little more "human" than we have been led to believe.

...

Please forgive my enthusiasm for these fine beings, Major Hextrophon, and excuse the blatant unprofessionalism of the enclosed report. Where and how you choose to use this wealth of information is, of course, up to you. I just hope that I have added some small amount of knowledge about these strange and dangerous times in which we live.

A Long Time Ago....

To: Arhul Hextrophon
From: Voren Na'al
Subject: The Yavin Report

Looking back on my research over these past weeks, I am struck by a certain feeling of accomplishment. If anything. I feel the vast number of contacts I've made and the sheer volume of background information I have gathered for this report should make the Alliance auditors feel their credits were well spent.

...

As I go over my notes, I hit upon the obvious. The focus of this report is not the events themselves, epic though they may be, but rather the many diverse beings that played out the tale. It is said that moments of bravery are most often created by moments of necessity. This story defies that notion, it is far easier to succumb to tyranny than to fight it, for freedom is not a necessity, it is a gift. Those who recognize its worth fight to protect it.

  • 3
    A great find! But it's possible R2D2 was quoting the text Voren Naal wrote. I might accept this as the answer over mine. I'll see. – TheAsh Dec 9 '19 at 20:26
  • 3
    @TheAshsaysReinstateMonica - This wasn't even close to being G-canon when it was written. I've mostly added it for my own amusement. – Valorum Dec 9 '19 at 20:27

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.