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Behalf of a Female Boba Fett
The goal of this essay, as well as this site, is not to add to the criticism George Lucas receives from strangers about a project that has always been his, financially and creatively. Its goal is to make use of the immense network of Star Wars fans, to which Lucas sometimes lends an ear, in order to convince him that his series needs another female and that that female can and should be Boba Fett.
|The Star Wars series is a cultural event with the capacity to make a significant impact on the prejudices of its viewers. Acknowledging this, its almost exclusively white and male human population is a disappointment. To the cast of major characters, The Phantom Menace adds one black male and one white female, raising each of their totals to a pitiful two. Rumors that Jet Li will play Boba Fett in future installments mean that Fett's human identity will be revealed, and Fett is the ideal candidate for the ground-breaking, balls-to-the-wall female character that the Star Wars audience deserves.|
|My emphasis on Fett's gender rather than race comes from the fact that the series' females, Queen Amidala and Princess Leia, fall prey to female stereotypes, while Lando Calrissian and Mace Windu are examples of colorblind casting. Although Leia and Amidala wield weapons and kick enough ass to keep the plot moving, they prefer planning to acting, require protection and rescue, and serve primarily to continue the Jedi bloodline. Their royal privilege and youth make them difficult to take seriously, and the scripts of Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi reflect that difficulty, as Leia is forced to trade the cranky barbs of A New Hope for Jabba love-garb and Ewok-befriending.|
|The character of Boba Fett is an ideal candidate to counteract Star Wars' female role rut. Fett has a strong presence in the initial trilogy and promises to play a larger part in the prequels. Plus, Fett is a potent and popular figure in the series, offers no evidence of being either gender within the films, and unlike Leia or Amidala has enough of the dark side to be interesting. In addition, such an interesting and strong female character would attract the viewership of women who otherwise would experience Star Wars only in the company of more enthusiastic boyfriends, brothers and sons. Star Wars' story is appealing and accessible to women; it is only its characters that are not.|
|The force of female exclusion from Star Wars is reflected in the paltry proportion of its female fans. The casting of a female actor in the role of Boba Fett would demonstrate that women are not a forgotten or negligible demographic, as well as provide evidence that women can serve a cinematic purpose other than romance and reproduction. The fact that a female Fett would win female fans without alienating male fans begs the question why, instead of asking why Fett should be female, audiences aren't asking, "Why not?"|
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