Ben Harper, of Lucasfilm, Ltd, in Star Wars Gamer #3:
We have never disavowed the existence of Marvel comics. We have, whenever feasible, included important events and characters from the Marvel comics in our other products. Some of the Marvel storylines before anyone knew what would happen in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Obviously, in many places, those films contradicted what had happened in the comics. Which ones are more important? The films, of course. Sue Rostoni, of Lucas Licensing, in Star Wars Gamer #6:
However, Lucasfilm recognizes the creativity and diversity within the Marvel comics, and feels that there is a place within the Star Wars universe for non-continuity events. You'll notice that books recognized as Star Wars canon are marked with Era symbols (so you'll know where they fall within the Star Wars timeline). The non-continuity books (at this point, the Dark Horse Star Wars Tales and Infinities: A New Hope comics) will soon be marked with a non-continuity symbol. Elements from Marvel which do not tread upon that which has been established in the films, novels, comics, et cetera, are being integrated into official Star Wars canon because we like them, they're cool, the aliens will be fun to use in the RPG, and, well, we were just feeling a bit nostalgic. After all, it's been over 20 years!
Canon refers to an authoritative list of books that the Lucas Licensing editors consider an authentic part of the official Star Wars history. Our goal is to present a continuous and unified history of the Star Wars galaxy, insofar as that history does not conflict with, or undermine the meaning of Mr Lucas's Star Wars saga of films and screenplays.Starwars.com Hyperspace
"So how did Anakin get that scar, George?" asks John Knoll Starwars.com Hyperspace
"I don't know. Ask Howard," says George, referring to President of Lucas Licensing Howard Roffman. "That's one of those things that happens in the novels between the movies. I just put it there. He has to explain how it got there. I think Anakin got it slipping in the bathtub, but of course, he's not going to tell anybody that."
Over the last couple of days, I've been chatting plot points with Jonathan Rinzler, visiting Senior Editor from LucasBooks. More than most of the crew, we tend to think about the ramifications of the Episode III plot, and how it sends ripples throughout the fictional galaxy. As the editor of the future Visual Dictionary and other sourcebooks to be spun out of Episode III, he needs to keep in mind the big picture. Keeping abreast of Expanded Universe developments is also part of my job. Star Wars Insider # 68
This conversation reminds me of the inevitable Expanded Universe / movie canon debates that always pop up online. I've always considered such arguments a waste of time for the most part (it's all fictional, after all), but I do respect that the stability of the universe's continuity does mean a great deal to many fans. With that in mind, here's a heads up for future debaters.
For Expanded Universe-is-canon proponents, the inclusion of a character, vehicle designs and other concept art created or expanded in literature will add fuel to their arguments. For those movie purists who like to counter with pointing out (apparent) contradictions, there's at least two lines of dialogue -- one dealing with the Jedi Council, the other with the Republic -- that will require some creative interpretation to make the universe one big happy place again.
pg. 36: To guide Jenssen and Chasemore, Lucy Wilson, Lucas Licensing's director of publishing, recommended me [David West Reynolds] for the project in 1997, with the assignment of analyzing all preceding Star Wars references, resolving discrepancies, and generating new ideas to fill out the vehicles' detail like never before. Wilson wanted the books to be absolutely definitive. To do that would require access to Lucasfilm's photo library, unpublished set blueprints, filming models in the Lucasfilm Archives, and interviews with ILM artists."Star Wars Insider # 68 sidebar, "THE DK STAR WARS LIBRARY" page 43:
Long after the original Incredible Cross-Sections book revolutionized Star Wars "nonfiction", Dorling Kindersley continues to publish amazing resources revealing the secrets of vehicles, equipment, and locations. The latest offering is Inside The Worlds of Star Wars Attack Of The Clones: The Complete Guide to the Incredible Locations from Episode II. Illustrated by the veteran team of Richard Chasemore and Hans Jenssen, this was written by series editor Simon Beecroft, in consultation with Dr. Curtis Saxton. Star Wars Insider #68 pg.43:
While this book deals with locations rather than vehicles, the challenge remains the same, in Beecroft's words: "to accurately rationalize what's seen in the film and then extend the universe that little further." Many locations in the Star Wars galaxy are nothing if not big. Fortunately, the artists were prepared for the challenge. "One thing they've learned: never to underestimate the scale of the task," says Beecroft. "Richard and Hans put in hundreds and hundreds of hours doing a vehicles book. For a locations book, they must double that, at least. Some of these artworks are just enormous: look at the Geonosian Droid Factory or the Outlander Club."
As Richard [Chasemore] and Hans [Jenssen] got into the Star Wars universe, they became more comfortable creating new elements. Richard produced the cross-section of Slave I almost entirely on his own, for example. By the time of the Episode I book, I was contributing mainly conceptual guidance and occasional details on ship layouts. It’s a testament to the Star Wars sensibility that Hans and Richard developed that their work eventually was referenced by the Production Art Department and ILM. During the Episode II Cross-Sections book project, Richard asked concept design supervisor Doug Chiang about the weapon systems on Episode II's Slave I. Doug told him, "You should know, you put them there." ILM had followed Richard's illustration in creating the digital Slave I.Starwars.com Hyperspace
In the background stand Senator Po Nudo and his aide in returning costumes from Episode II. I'll never look at the Aqualish quite the same since I've found out that Nick Gillard has taken to calling them "beavers," inspired by their prolific dental appendages. Also in the background are Passel Argente and his aide, Denaria Kee, although they have new costumes. I'm surprised to see Denaria identified as such on the call sheet, since that name was established in the Episode II Visual Dictionary and not by Production. During Production, the aide had the jokey name of Twink Kee.Curtis Saxton Interview, TheForceNet
Q: Was George Lucas involved?
Ultimately everything in the Star Wars literature is inspired by or deduced from the work of George Lucas. Hans, Richard and I had no direct contact with him. However the important people at LF Licensing meet with Lucas frequently and they were able to obtain answers to questions raised during the development of our book. For example, I understand that the planet Rothana was named in an intervention by George Lucas.
We introduced lots of fun stuff, including but not restricted to:
* Cameo by the young Senator Greyshade.
* Checking that the gunships would fit out the hatches in the transport ships (they didn't fit according to the first animatics we saw).
* Why and how the Trade Federation core ships were landed.
* The meaning of the "cog" logo of the Galactic Republic, and some other pre-Republic history which could not be printed: concerning the Bendu Monks who evolved into the Jedi and the Unification Wars that formed the Republic.
* Painstaking fixes to the paradoxes of the Delta-7 Aethersprite: how the droid was able to fit, and how "a fighter that size" could get into "deep space on its own."