Prepare For Star Wars: Underworld

Live-action TV series gets a title

It's been rumoured and developed and teased for years, and it's not any nearer actually going into production. But producer Rick McCallum has just confirmed to IGN that the live-action Star Wars TV series is still a going concern, and he even revealed the title. It's Star Wars: Underworld.

Now, that doesn't mean a crossover with the goth-vampire franchise, in which Kate Beckinsale squeezes into her PVC catsuit to join the Rebellion (as awesome as that might be). What it means is crime syndicates and gangsters... and maybe bounty hunters.

"The scripts take place between episodes III and IV," says McCallum. "It's that twenty-year period when Luke is growing up. It's not about Luke, but it's about that period when the Empire is really trying to take things forward. It's called Underworld - that's the working title - and it's underneath what's going on: the criminals and the gangs that are running everything. It's like Wall Street, and the criminals that are running the United States!"

Don't hold your breath though, since the budgetary concerns that have been holding things up for years, are still the main hymn on the song sheet.

"The prequels only cost $100m each, which in Hollywood is nothing," McCallum claims, "but this is really tough, because we're trying to put the same effects and technology from those two-hour films, into one-hour episodes, and do it every week for $5m an episode.

"We have fifty unbelievable scripts. Each episode is bigger than any of the prequels were, and they're complex and dark and adult. But right now, technologically, there's no way we can do them for that $5m: there's so much digital animation, because we have so many digital characters. So I think the idea is just that we hold off, wait and see if there are any major breakthroughs in the next year or two, and once we can come up with some virtual set software that allows us to travel anywhere, we'll revisit. We'll get there. I just hope I live long enough!"