In Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, during the Battle of Coruscant and just before the second confrontation of Count Dooku with Anakin and Obi-Wan, we learn that this confrontation was planned.

CAPTAIN: TWO Jedi have landed in the main hangar bay.
GENERAL GRIEVOUS: Just as Count Dooku predicted.

But, this confrontation didn't end the way he expected :

PALPATINE: Good, Anakin, good. I knew you could do it. Kill him. Kill him now!
ANAKIN: I shouldn't . . .
Anakin cuts off Count Dooku's head.

Others events show that his master's plan worked well. But, this cannot be how Dooku's thought his plan would end.

What did Dooku plan to achieve by kidnapping the chancellor and battling the Jedi?
And did he have his own plan to do as Sith always do: take his master's place?

  • That was actual dialogue in the movie? Thank the Force I skipped it entirely... Commented Dec 30, 2014 at 16:30

6 Answers 6


According to the Revenge of the Sith novelization by Matthew Stover (2005), Count Dooku was deceived by Darth Sidious into thinking that the plan was to kill Obi-Wan, turn Anakin to the Dark Side, and allow himself to be captured by the Republic. After some time of captivity, Dooku would defect to the Republic and join with Sidious/Anakin to create the new Empire. This is not completely insane since according to the novel Dooku is respected by the citizens of the galaxy as a sort of Robert E. Lee figure.

Below are excerpts from the novel. Dooku looks forward to captivity and serving in the new Empire:

"It will be," he said slowly, meditatively, as though he spoke only to himself, "an embarrassment to be captured by him." The voice that answered him was so familiar that sometimes his very thoughts spoke in it, instead of in his own. "An embarrassment you can survive, Lord Tyranus. After all, he is the greatest Jedi alive, is he not? And have we not ensured that all the galaxy shares this opinion?" "Quite so, my Master. Quite so." Again, Dooku sighed. Today he felt every hour of his eighty-three years. "It is ... fatiguing, to play the villain for so long, Master. I find myself looking forward to an honorable captivity."

A captivity that would allow him to sit out the rest of the war in comfort; a captivity that would allow him to forswear his former allegiances-when he would conveniently appear to finally discover the true extent of the Separatists' crimes against civilization-and bind himself to the new government with his reputation for integrity and idealism fully intact. The new government ... This had been their star of destiny for lo, these many years. A government clean, pure, direct: none of the messy scramble for the favor of ignorant rabble and subhuman creatures that made up the Republic he so despised. The government he would serve would be Authority personified. Human authority. It was no accident that the primary powers of the Confederacy of Independent Systems were Neimoidian, Skakoan, Quarren and Aqualish, Muun and Gossam, Sy Myrthian and Koorivar and Geonosian. At war's end the aliens would be crushed, stripped of all they possessed, and their systems and their wealth would be given into the hands of the only beings who could be trusted with them. Human beings. Dooku would serve an Empire of Man. And he would serve it as only he could. As he was born to. He would smash the Jedi Order to create it anew: not shackled by the corrupt, narcissistic, shabby little beings who called themselves politicians, but free to bring true authority and true peace to a galaxy that so badly needed both. An Order that would not negotiate. Would not mediate. An Order that would enforce. The survivors of the Jedi Order would become the Sith Army. The Fist of the Empire.

Sidious explains the plan to kill Obi-Wan to Dooku:

"Kenobi must die. Today. At your hand. His death may be the code key of the final lock that will seal Skywalker to us forever."

Dooku understood: not only would the death of his mentor tip Skywalker's already unstable emotional balance down the darkest of slopes, but it would also remove the greatest obstacle to Skywalker's successful conversion. As long as Kenobi was alive, Skywalker would never be securely in the camp of the Sith; Kenobi's unshakable faith in the values of the Jedi would keep the Jedi blindfold on Skywalker's eyes and the Jedi shackles on the young man's true power.

Still, though, Dooku had some reservations. This had all come about too quickly; had Sidious thought through all the implications of this operation? "But I must ask, my Master: is Skywalker truly the man we want?"

"He is powerful. Potentially more powerful than even myself."

"Which is precisely," Dooku said meditatively, "why it might be best if I were to kill him, instead."

Dooku sees the plan as a path to Sith Masterhood:

Improving upon his Master's plan was near to impossible; his own idea, of substituting Kenobi for Skywalker, he had to admit was only the product of a certain misplaced sentimentality. Skywalker was almost certainly the man for the job. He should be; Darth Sidious had spent a considerable number of years making him so. Today's test would remove the almost. He had no doubt that Skywalker would fall. Dooku understood that this was more than a test for Skywalker; though Sidious had never said so directly, Dooku was certain that he himself was being tested as well. Success today would show his Master that he was worthy of the mantle of Mastery himself: by the end of the coming battle, he would have initiated Skywalker into the manifold glories of the dark side, just as Sidious had initiated him.

More of the plan involving Anakin and the destruction of the Jedi Order:

With his heroic capture of Count Dooku, Anakin Skywalker will become the ultimate hero: the greatest hero in the history of he Republic, perhaps of the Jedi Order itself. The loss of his beloved partner will add just exactly the correct spice of tragedy to give melancholy weight to his every word, when he gives his HoloNet interviews denouncing the Senate's corruption as impeding the war effort, when he delicately-oh, so delicately, not to mention reluctantly-insinuates that corruption in the Jedi Order prolonged the war as well. When he announces the creation of a new order of Force-using warriors. He will be the perfect commanding general for the Sith Army.

Dooku could only shake his head in awe. And to think that only days earlier, the Jedi had seemed so close to uncovering, even destroying, all he and his Master had worked for. But he should never have feared. His Master never lost. He would never lose. He was the definition of unbeatable. How can one defeat an enemy one thinks is a friend? And now, with a single brilliant stroke, his Master would turn the Jedi Order back upon itself like an Ethrani ourobouros devouring its own tail. This was the day. The hour. The death of Obi-Wan Kenobi would be the death of the Republic. Today would see the birth of the Empire.

"Tyranus? Are you well?"

"Am I . . ." Dooku realized that his eyes had misted. "Yes, my Master. I am beyond well. Today, the climax-the grand finale the culmination of all your decades of work ... I find myself somewhat overcome."

"Compose yourself, Tyranus. Kenobi and Skywalker are nearly at the door. Play your part, my apprentice, and the galaxy is ours."


According to Wookieepedia article on Dooku and Sidious, the plan was to lure Anakin to the dark side, but he was unaware the he would lose his life in the process.

Sidious's plan, as Tyranus understood it, was that the Count would kill Kenobi, provoking Skywalker into enough of a rage that the Jedi would tap into the dark side. At this point, Sidious would reveal himself to Skywalker, promptly converting him to the Sith cause. Dooku would then be "arrested," and defect to the Republic in captivity, re-emerging to aid Sidious in establishing a Sith Empire.

As for his own plan, it look like Dooku still had views for Obi-Wan, the fact that he spared his life (if intentional) may be part it.

Speaking to Sidious, Darth Tyranus requested that Kenobi be given one more chance to turn to the dark side, citing that a Jedi of Kenobi's integrity would lend support to the planned New Order. Sidious disagreed, claiming that Kenobi was too indoctrinated by the Jedi to turn, and he insisted Tyranus kill the Jedi Master.

For some reason, he probably thought Obi-Wan was a better Jedi than Anakin. His plan may have been something like, incapacitate Obi-Wan, kill Anakin and use Obi-Wan's rage to convert him to the Dark-Side and eliminate Sidius with his help.

But all this remain unknown, the unexpected treason of his master made obsolete any plan he may have prepared.

Expecting his Master to intervene and save his life as Sidious had promised to do in the case of defeat, Tyranus instead was shocked to see the Dark Lord goad Skywalker to deliver the deathblow, and it was then that Dooku came to realize the second deception: Sidious never intended for the Count to survive; he was simply being used to create the Confederacy and make Sidious' plan truly possible.


I can see a couple possibilities myself. Being a Sith, it could very well have been Dooku's plan to take his master's place and to try to turn ObiWan or Anakin to be his apprentice. It wouldn't be the first time he had tried to turn ObiWan. Also knowing his master's interest in Anakin, he could also see Anakin as a threat and see it as the ideal opportunity to kill Anakin without making it look like he was going out of his way to do it and risking his master's anger.

He might also just see it as a chance to eliminate two of the strongest Jedi in the order. Knowing how close Anakin was to the Chancellor and knowing also that Anakin and ObiWan had developed a reputation for taking on these kinds of missions, they were the most likely candidates to undertake a rescue mission.

  • "It wouldn't be the first time he had tried to turn ObiWan." could you elaborate?
    – DavRob60
    Commented Oct 1, 2011 at 2:32
  • 4
    Episode 2, when he had ObiWan prisoner on Geonosis. He tried to get ObiWan to join him.
    – BBlake
    Commented Oct 1, 2011 at 4:30

Dooku probably thought that his master would help him finish the Jedi or that he would be able to kill them by himself.

Also, my guess would be that Palpatine had some sort of control over Dooku because in the original trilogy he does the same thing to Vader to try and recruit Luke.


Dooku was at the time Palpatine's apprentice, acting under his orders. Pretty much everything you see in Episode II happened according to Palpatine's design through Dooku; Dooku was an apparent leader of the Separatists, and one of the driving forces behind the civil war, which Palpatine had planned in order to gain power in the Republic.

My interpretation of the events from the OP is thus: Dooku knew that the Jedi would make every attempt to get to him to rescue Chancellor Palpatine (who had been "kidnapped" by the Separatists during the battle), and would likely send their best pair; Obi-Wan and Anakin. His mistake was first thinking he could beat the two of them again, as he had done before Yoda stepped in in Ep II, and second in believing that, should he lose and be captured, Palpatine would protect him, the trusted apprentice.

Dooku's thinking was a mistake because that's not the way of the Dark Side and never has been; Palpatine killed his own master (the secret ambition of any apprentice once they realize they can't be an equal to their master while the master lives), and sacrificed several apprentices to his designs (it was eventually his undoing in RotJ). Palpatine was simply trading up; he'd sensed the fear and the pride in Anakin (along with his exceptional power) and had decided to lure him to the Dark Side; having two apprentices is both redundant and dangerous when you know they will both want to kill you and may just decide to team up briefly to do so.


I would guess that Dooku was aware of Order 66 and planned for it to be invoked and catch the jedi unaware. He likely assumed that Anakin would stay on the side of the Jedi and refuse to kill an unarmed captive begging for mercy. That Anakin would then turn on the Emperor and be caught by the guards trying to kill the rightful leader of the Republic. That would justify order 66. He may have even hoped that Anakin would actually kill Sideous so that Dooku could take his place.

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