‘Star Wars’ Spotlight: Bib Fortuna

By Ryan Rigley

With the release of “Into Darkness” only weeks away, director J. J. Abrams has finally started shifting gears from “Star Trek” to “Star Wars.” “There are infinitely more questions than answers right now,” Abrams dishes on the future of the “Star Wars” franchise in a recent interview with Empire Online. “But to me, they’re not that dissimilar. I feel like I can identify a hunger for what I would want to see again and that is an incredibly exciting place to begin a project.”

Speaking of infinitely more questions, one of the biggest questions on everyone’s minds is which characters will be appearing in the new trilogy? Sure, Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, and Carrie Fisher have all (maybe, probably) signed on for “Star Wars VII,” but what about the countless other characters that populate the “Star Wars” Universe? Say, Bib Fortuna for example; Jabba the Hutt’s right hand man (I mean Twi’lek) who manages to survive Luke Skywalker’s explosive escape during “Return of the Jedi.”

Growing up as a smuggler on the planet Ryloth, Bib Fortuna is quickly banished from Twi’lek society after being found guilty of illegally smuggling Ryll (a spice found on Ryloth used primarily for medicinal purposes). Eventually, Fortuna is noticed by notorious crime lord, Jabba the Hutt, and is recruited to help smuggle goods for his criminal empire, which subsequently lands him the position of majordomo to Jabba’s palace.

Returning to his homeworld, Fortuna would go on to enslave a number of his fellow Twi’leks; bringing them to Jabba for use as servants/dancers. Fortuna also manages to purchase a Rancor for Jabba’s birthday, as well as famed Circus Horrificus beast handler, Malakili. As Jabba’s loyal majordomo, Fortuna grows to hate the Hutt far more than any being in the galaxy. In fact, he has attempted (but failed) to have Jabba assassinated on multiple occasions before the Hutt is eventually choked to death by Princess Leia.

Bib Fortuna is one of the most well-known criminals in the entire “Star Wars” universe. After Jabba’s sail barge explodes in “Return of the Jedi,” Fortuna is able to escape on his private skiff returning to the palace to usurp Jabba’s throne.

However, soon the mysterious B’omarr monks (whom reside in the underground cellars of the palace) make their presence known; forcibly removing Fortuna’s brain from his body and placing it in a spider-droid walker. So basically, Luke Skywalker is indirectly responsible for Bib Fortuna losing his entire body. If that’s not a good reason for revenge, then I don’t know what is.

In the “Star Wars” Expanded Universe, Bib Fortuna is able convince the B’omarr monks into helping him place his consciousness into the body of another pale-skinned Twi’lek (Firith Olan). With that said, how crazy would “Star Wars VII” be if Fortuna exacted his vengeance on the Rebellion by having the monks place his consciousness inside the body of Luke Skywalker? It’d be like “Star Wars” meets “Face/Off!” How’s that for an answer, J. J. Abrams?