What ‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ Needs: Figrin D’an and the Modal Nodes

By Ryan Rigley

With Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford all rumored to be reprising their roles (as Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, and Han Solo respectively), J. J. Abrams’ “Star Wars VII” is quickly shaping up to be the film that fans had hoped “The Phantom Menace” would be. Up until last week, the three “Star Wars” alumni were the only casting rumors out there, but now, thanks to the often-trustworthy Latino Review, the casting floodgates have been opened!

Jonathan Rhys Meyer, who has previously worked with J. J. Abrams on
“Mission: Impossible 3,” is reportedly in talks to play an as-of-yet unknown character in the upcoming “Star Wars” trilogy. While it’s entirely likely that Meyer will be playing a new role tailor-made for the new trilogy, we can’t help but wish he was playing one of those memorable minor characters from the original trilogy. Take the Modal Nodes for instance, the band performing at the Mos Eisley Cantina in “A New Hope.”

Hailing from the planet Clak’dor VII, the Modal Nodes are comprised of at least five Bith musicians at a time; Figrin D’an (the band founder and leader), Doikk Na’ts, Ickabel G’ont, Tech Mo’r, and Nalan Cheel. As bandleader, Figrin would insist on placing his full name before the band’s name at every show they played. It was precisely this rambunctious nature, along with his horrible gambling addiction, that landed him the nickname “Fiery” Figrin D’an.

Beginning their music career during the Clone Wars as a part of Jasod Revoc’s Galactic Revenue, the band would eventually go on to sign an exclusive contract with notorious crime lord Jabba the Hutt; trapping the Modal Nodes on the desert planet Tatooine for the majority of its existence. Fearing for their lives, Figrin wagers all of the band’s equipment and instruments on a game of sabacc in order to win enough money to leave the planet. But, of course, he loses.

The Modal Nodes, more commonly referred to as the Star Wars Cantina Band, are arguably one of the most memorable parts of the first “Star Wars” film. Including them in the newest “Star Wars” movie, “Star Wars VII,” would not only help bridge the gap between the two trilogies but also help remind audiences of just how intricate the “Star Wars”
universe actually is. Besides, who wouldn’t like to hear their classic hit “Mad About Me” once more for old time’s sake? Nobody, that’s who!

Being that the band performed exclusively for Jabba the Hutt for a great deal of time, it’s entirely possible that we could see Figrin D’an and the Modal Nodes pop up in either the “Boba Fett” or “Young Han Solo” spinoff films being that both of those characters deal quite heavily with the Hutt. However, I personally think it would be way more interesting if they were to appear on a television, playing in the background of “Star Wars VII,” starring in an intergalactic episode of “Behind the Music.”