What The New ‘Star Wars’ Movies Need: Wedge Antilles

By Ryan Rigley

Although “Star Wars” won’t be making any sort of appearance at San Diego Comic-Con this year, Disney has announced that this year’s D23 Expo will be pushing the galaxy far, far away quite prominently. Taking place in Anaheim, California from August 9th to 11th, rumors has it that Disney will be making official the role reprisals of Luke Skywalker, Han Solo and Princess Leia with appearances from Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, and Carrie Fischer.

While this news is certainly exciting, we’ve already assumed that Luke and company would be coming back for the new “Star Wars” trilogy. Sure, and official announcement would be nice and all, but we can’t help but wonder which memorable minor characters might be popping up in “Star Wars VII.” Take Wedge Antilles for example, a Corellian pilot that appears in all three of the original “Star Wars” films.

Hailing from the planet Corellia, Wedge is the son of Jagged and Zena Antilles; the owners of a fuel depot in the Gus Treta Inner-System Market Station. Wedge lived the earliest years of his life largely unaffected by the Galactic Empire, dreaming of one day becoming a famous architect and/or space explorer. However, that all changed the day that Wedge was forced to watch his parents sacrifice their own lives as a result of unruly space pirates destroying their fuel depot.

Inheriting a great deal of money from the insurance on the fuel depot, Wedge purchases his own freighter and befriends an older mechanic named Rallo. Soon, Wedge finds himself falling head over heels in love with Rallo’s daughter and as a result becomes much more interested in Rallo’s support of the Rebellion. Eventually, Imperial stormtroopers pay the mechanic a visit, guns a blazing, and level the entire town, forcing Wedge to finally join the Rebel Alliance.

Although Wedge only appears onscreen for a collected time of about three minutes, he does actually play a very crucial role in the original “Star Wars” trilogy. In “A New Hope,” Wedge saves Luke Skywalker by shooting down a TIE fighter hot on his trail and is also the only other X-wing pilot to survive the Battle of Yavin. In “Empire Strikes Back,” he can be seen flying the Snowspeeder that trips and destroys one of the Imperial AT-ATs.

Lastly, in “Return of the Jedi,” Wedge acts as the leader of the Red Squadron during the finale Battle of Endor and personally destroys the Death Star’s power regulator allowing for Lando Calrissian to blow up its core. Clearly, if it weren’t for Wedge Antilles, the Rebellion would have had a much harder time taking down the Galactic Empire.

In the “Star Wars” Expanded Universe, Wedge Antilles is known as the New Republic’s greatest pilot and leader of his own personal Wraith Squadron. Later, he is promoted to a general position by his friend, Supreme Commander Ackbar. That being said, it wouldn’t be out of the question at all if Wedge appeared in “Star Wars VII” as either a general of the New Republic or the leader of the Wraith Squadron.