Darth Maul Lives! And he's coming to 'Star Wars: The Clone Wars' this spring -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

CloneWarsDarthMaul

He’s alive!

That’s right. As unlikely as it may seem, Darth Maul, the glowering Sith warrior who fell to Obi-Wan Kenobi’s blade at the end of Star Wars: Episode I—The Phantom Menace actually survived being cut in half and will return to George Lucas’s still unfolding space saga on Cartoon Network’s Star Wars: The Clone Wars (read our recaps here!) in spring 2012.

With his red-and-black tattooed face, Bronson-esque stoicism, Dervish-like mixed martial-arts moves (courtesy of Ray Park), and legendary double-bladed lightsaber—the coolest birthday present for 10-year-old boys in the summer of 1999—Maul was easily the most striking character in The Phantom Menace. (TPM is due to be released in theaters with a 3-D facelift February 10, 2012). And he only had three lines in the movie! Maul was a blunt instrument, a weapon of pure aggression to carry out the bidding of ūber Sith Lord Darth Sidious (a.k.a the future Emperor Palpatine), when he wasn’t yet ready to emerge from the shadows. Think of Maul like the Star Wars equivalent of Daniel Craig’s Bond. Only, did we mention he had a frickin’ double-bladed  lightsaber?

When he was vivisected courtesy of Obi-Wan Kenobi, Maul immediately took his place among pop culture figures who’d also been cut in half: Bishop in Aliens, Quint in Jaws, Tony Goldwyn in Ghost, the Black Dahlia. Needless to say, we never expected to see him again, right?

Wrong! Last January a Clone Wars arc featuring a relative of Maul’s, the duped, sympathetic Nightbrother of Dathomir Savage Opress teased a hazy image of Maul in a crystal ball. Did this mean the former Sith Warrior was still alive? Indeed, and EW’s got an exclusive video first look at Maul’s animated form. Take a walk on the Dark Side and check it out after the break:

“I found it funny in The Phantom Menace when Darth Maul got cut in half,” Clone Wars supervising director Dave Filoni says. “I thought George was definitively saying to the fans, ‘There’s no way this character is coming back. This is not a Boba Fett/Sarlacc Pit situation where, because of fan love, Boba gets out of that thing any number of ways.’ Fast-forward ten-years, and I’m the one to bring Maul back.”

Well, mostly. Filoni acknowledges that the order to resurrect the Sith Lord came from George Lucas himself, who became more interested in his Phantom Menace creation while developing Savage Opress for the last season of The Clone Wars. Awesome as Maul was in the movie, he barely got to do anything before the old chop-chop. When asked if Maul’s return is motivated by the feeling that he was underutilized in The Phantom Menace, Filoni says, “I think in part.”

Filoni’s biggest challenge, though, will come from the legions of fans ready to shout “No way!” at the very idea of a Maul return. But addressing the (un)believability of his survival could make for some interesting drama. “First of all, how does he survive getting cut in half?” says Filoni. “Plus, he fell! And also, don’t forget Obi-Wan Kenobi is still around, so I’m sure Maul wouldn’t be very happy with him.”

Fans will note that there is precedent for this kind of resurrection. “The Dark Side of the Force is the pathway to many abilities some consider to be…unnatural,” Darth Sidious says in Revenge of the Sith. Sidious and his master found a way to use the Force to cheat death—that’s how he was able to keep Vader alive after that little swan dive into a lava field. Couldn’t Maul have picked up on some of that too? Says Filoni, “He’s suffered through a lot to keep himself alive and implemented the training of his master to do so.”

Once you get beyond the plausibility issues, what’s left is actually an amazing storytelling opportunity. The Clone Wars has featured other characters from the movies, but mostly original trilogy stalwarts like Chewbacca, Tarkin, and Ackbar. Those are all characters whose fates have already been decided. “Here, we’re moving forward with Maul,” Filoni says. “He’s more than ten years older than he was in The Phantom Menace. That’s immensely satisfying, because now nobody knows what’s going to happen to him. I know, but nobody else does.”

Who said all the biggest Star Wars stories have already been told? Fellow fanatics, are you going to hop along for the ride this spring? Until then, keep yourself up to date on all the latest Clone Wars news here. And every Friday night a new Clone Wars episode airs, watch it with us on viEWer!

More from EW.com:
Latest Clone Wars Recap: Real Steel
‘Star Wars: The Clone Wars’ Recaps and Episode Guide
‘Star Wars: The Clone Wars’: ‘Battlestar’ alum Katee Sackhoff’s a Mandalorian warrior! — EXCLUSIVE FIRST LOOK
‘Star Wars: The Clone Wars’: Season 4 scoop on Katee Sackhoff, Savage Opress, and Chewbacca. Plus, a plea for Ben Quadinaros!
Clone Wars Recap: Darth Maul returns?
Recap: Heckuva Job, Goldenrod
Recap: An Open Letter to Lucasfilm
Recap: The Return of the King
Recap: Captain Ackbar’s Aqualung

Comments (169 total) Add your comment
Page: 1 2 3 7
  • Cris

    “Once you get beyond the plausibility issues…”
    The plausibility issues? Of a science fiction outer space soap opera with lasers and spaceships and hyperspace and Wookiees and space teddy bears? The heck with the plausibility issues … just bring back Darth Maul!

    • ranliao

      It would be better if it turns out to be a clone of Darth Maul like with Andrew Scott in Universal Soldier: Regeneration.BTW,I wanna share a good news to you.My best friend ,she just has announced her wedding with a millionaire man who is a celebrity !they met via Millionaireloving.C óM ..it is the largest and best club for celebrity and their admirers to chat online.You do not have to be rich or famous. ,but you can meet one , It’s worthy a try,Maybe you wanna check it out or tell your friends!

      • john

        Wow, an actual comment mixed in with the spam! Creative.

      • Grumpster

        Yeah…ranlio, way to dress up an otherwise $hitty site.

      • nada

        Actually he just copy pasted someone elses comment from below before his spam.

      • Lisa S

        The DDDDbag writer needs to stop lavishing praise on episodes he hasn’t seen yet. It’s tranparent, juvenile, and pathetic.

    • RedAviary

      I don’t suppose the words “internal logic” mean anything to you.

      There was a comic where they did something almost exactly like this. Maul got a pair of cybernetic legs and hunted Obi-Wan while he was in exile on Tatooine.

      Doesn’t seem very inspired, with that in mind. But this IS The Clone Wars we’re talking about, so I suppose that’s par the course.

    • Color Me Impressed

      This news is pretty awesome! Only three good things came out of the sh*tstorm that was TPM: 1. Natalie Portman becoming a household name 2. Liam Neeson as Qui-Gon Jin 3. Darth Freaking Maul!!!!!

      • Spaceballs the Flamethrower

        Exactly. I love your comment. I mean I don’t care how crappy or crazy the idea of Darth Maul coming back is I JUST WANT HIM BACK!!! He only came out in one movie for like 10 minutes so who cares if he comes back in comics, books, or cartoons?

    • angelwhiteraven

      ((Screams like a fangirl)) I guess I’ll have to watch this with my son! I loved him in TPM.

  • spanked by teacher

    what crap i hate stories where “dead’ people come back crappy weak storytelling keeping sucking the life out of your once brilliant opus George

    • Mike

      why hate just change the channel. This is a cool story. It is fun and interesting. If you don’t like it why comment at all. I don’t like Twilight but I am not on a website hating on them.

      • Michael

        He’s not hating- he’s saying that he doesn’t like those stories. He’s allowed to have an opinion. If it was hating, then he would have said he didn’t like it just because it was stupid. He gave a reason, albeit with poor grammar, but a reason nontheless. People can have negative opinions. Not every comment has to be positive.

      • sabor

        no….he is hating….he even used the word in his comment.

    • V4Vendetta14

      I read the Star Wars novel on the bounty hunters of the Star Wars universe. As a fan of the unaltered first trilogy, it was pretty cool. They would take a 30 second shot from one of the movies and create a story based on it. Boba Fett’s escape was cool, and made perfect sense. If the sarlac took thousands of years to digest an individual…why couldn’t the baddest bounty hunter in the galaxy escape?

    • Grumpster

      Maybe it’ll be a lost twin. Maybe they saved some DNA (or whatever he has) and cloned him from it and somehow magically saved his memories of being evil and all. Maybe the writing has just become sloppy and lazy and there are no more original ideas. Maybe this is just another cash grab from a lame storyline and another attempt to sell more crap for the holiday season. Maybe Lucas should just retire and burn ever copy of everything since the original trilogy.

      • Grumpster

        stupid stuck keys…burn every copy..not ever.

      • Lisa S

        Maybe you should stop rambling and shove all your bitter rhetotic up your whiny @rsehole.

    • volumedealer1

      Yeah that should hire you with your well thought-out comments. (that’s sarcasm)

    • Monu

      Review by Robert false name for Rating: Like the character in the film we fiallny get this Darth Maul is a small toy, a bit part, easily half apart. Have fun! Not much.

  • harry

    DO IT!!!!!

  • JLC

    Killing Darth Maul was the third dumbest thing Lucas did with the prequels. He would have been an excellent villain throughout, with Darth Vader taking his place at the end of the third.

    • hobbes242

      Okay, I’m assuming the #1 dumbest thing was creating Jar-Jar. So, what was the 2nd dumbest thing?

      • endo

        #1 Jake Lloyd
        #2 Hayden Christensen

      • MrTexas

        #1 Hayden Christensen
        #2 Hayden Christensen as a ghost vader
        #3 Hayden Christensen as alive vader

      • Strepsi

        #1 Jar-Jar Binks
        #2 Making the intro text and openings all about Interplanetary Trade discussions rather than anything exciting
        #3 Killing Darth Maul

        Best thing: Amidala’s hair

    • Frobro

      I’d like to point out that on Darth Maul’s home planet Dathomir the females kicked the males out and exiled them to the planet’s moon. If Darth Maul is such a Badass, then how is it that he and all his brothers were beaten by girls. I think it is safe to say that Asajj Ventress is the true Badass, and she could kick Darth Maul’s sorry butt with one Lightsaber tied behind her back. Sorry guys, but face it, Maul is little girl compared to his big sister Ventress.
      LONG LIVE DARTH VENTRESS!

      • @ Frobro

        That was super nerdy but actually really fun to read. Thanks!

      • Shumway

        Ventress is too weak to become a Sith Lord. She’s a pathetic weakling. Maul would eat her for breakfast, even before she ignited both her Sabers.

      • kai

        thats simple maul was kidnapped from the jedi temple when he was young and ventuss is not a sith because darth bane rule of 2 still stands so in order for ventuss to be a sith lord dooku would of have 2 killed palpatine last time i check anakin be headed dooku all she is a pawn for the siths all hail the dark side

      • darkladyofthesith

        Actually, Ventress’s flaw, according to Count Dooku, is her fear, she will never be a true Sith because of it. Assuming the Maul went through the same transformation the Savage Opress did, or that he was raised by Darth Sidious from a very young age, he would have no fear, therefore he would easily best Ventress in battle. Even Savage Opress has the potential to be a true Sith, as Dooku proved when he told Opress that they would overthrow Sidious, something that he never offered to Ventress…… Just sayin’

      • M

        Except for the fact that Maul was taken by Darth Sidious at a very young age, trained in the ways of the dar side and basically to be a human weapon – which he ended up becoming. He killed a powerful Jedi Master in Qui-Gon Jinn albiet one that had gotten on years.

        Ventress has nothing on Darth Maul. He was a Sith Lord, superior to Ventress in every way.

      • Ian

        “would of have” — God, I hate it when people butcher the English language like this. It’s supposed to be “WOULD HAVE HAD to kill”, not “would of have”. How did that even make sense in your head when you typed it?

      • darthcaedus

        Darth Maul was taken in his infancey by Sidious. From that time on Sidious’ sole purpose was to create the ultimate Sith weapon. He would starve and deprive maul of sleep and set viciousdinkos on him. Maul only knew pain, suffering, and hate. That is why he was so freaking awesome. He was/is the ultimate Sith Warrior! “There is no pain where strength lies.”

      • aria tracinya

        EXCUSE ME??????FEMALE HERE! JK, I get your point

      • darthmezcal

        Most of this is clarified in the book Darth Plagueis.

  • Katy Kerry

    It would be better if it turns out to be a clone of Darth Maul like with Andrew Scott in Universal Soldier: Regeneration.

  • RC

    Sweet! Maul was always too cool to die the way he did. Bring it!

  • Colin Betteridge

    Can’t wait! I was hoping they would bring him back.

  • JM

    I remember everyone booing when he was killed at the end of Phantom Menace. I had a feeling he’d do a Boba Fett-type return someday. Cool!

    • Spaceballs the Flamethrower

      we did the same thing at the midnight showing for TPM 3D. Somebody that cool deserves more than 15 minutes of airtime in 1 star wars movie.

      • Braulio

        In razodmined, open-label phasic thos up to two neuropathies duration, insucurties coupled with exubera negotiated a humidifier dayquill sinus with lexapro and klonopin in erythropoietic function, apparently the fenoprofen sua volume in one unprocessed (fev1) and the incisor monoxide encouraging valacyclovir (dlco), than sonata amazed patients.

    • sawaje

      questi giochi con i lego deervbboro essere fatti solo se vengono tratti da qualcosa ke funziona, harry potter ,batman,indiana jones,starwars, quelli funzionano mentre lego rock band ( almeno per me ) non ha senso, pero potevano farne a meno di riprendere star wars, io spero in giochi lego con i personaggi dei lego, come successo con il gioco per ds

  • mike d

    they replaced the ubercool darth maul with uberboring count dooku….epic fail. it would have been so much cooler having anakin battle darth maul in ep 3 to kill him and replace him becoming the official number 2 sithmaster…

    • The Clooney

      Christopher Lee beats the hell out of a stuntguy who never talks. So go screw.

      • Tom

        In acting prowess, yes. But in kick-assery…not so much.

      • Rob

        uhhh yeah, because other than being in LOTR Lee’s main claim to fame was hokey Hammer Dracula movies, quite the thespian! LOL. I love Lee, don’t get me wrong, but please don’t include Lee as some incredible dramatic actor, he’s not. Since he is English, him at his worst is better than the best of American actors regardless of what genre, but his backlog is not Olivier. Maul never should have been killed. He’s no Bane, but he is very cool

  • Ciaran

    wow! wow! wow! this is going to be awesome, darth maul returns, I cant wait! The Clone Wars really is heating up and I love how we now have another character whos fate is unclear and undecided! And I think everyone will be intrigued to find out what happens to him, as much as what happens to Ventress and Ashoka! Second season was mandalorians, third season was savage oppress, those wondering what about season four, here you have it my friends, DARTH MAUL!!!

  • endo

    Another stupid cash grab by Lucas.

    • zeroshot

      Hows it a cash grab when its on free tv?

      • endo

        Wow, you can’t possibly be that dumb.

      • It’s not free TV . . .

        Cartoon Network is pay cable

      • monsterofmud

        AND, you can view the episodes completely FREE on both Starwars.com/clonewars, as well as on cartoonnetwork.com

      • Jack

        Maybe it varies by region. Cartoon Network is free in my area.

      • endo

        Holy Banta poodoo! It doesn’t matter if it’s free to watch. Do you guys honestly think Cartoon Network/Lucasfilm are producing this show out of the goodness of their hearts?

      • Matthew

        merchandising

      • MrTexas

        Matthew is correct

      • Jeremy

        free TV? wish i had free TV… where do you get such a thing?

      • slackerj

        @endo-Jeremy

        Thank you, you guys made me laugh pretty hard.

    • monsterofmud

      Yes endo, Lucas is doing it for fun. Supervising Director Dave Filoni continually mentions how Lucas is having a blast with this series, as it finally allows him to quickly get so many story ideas out of his system, and is much closer to the style and tone he was going for when he first embarked on Star Wars. Originally he was to have minimal involvement, but over time he’s only become more and more involved due to his enjoyment from it.

      Besides, Lucas stated in a 1978 Rolling Stone interview that aside from the live-action Star Wars films that tell the Skywalker saga, there’d be two television series that fill in the films’ gaps for the secondary characters. The Clone Wars is the first of these to see fruition; the upcoming live-action series is the other. Profitable or not, they’ve been in the works for at least 34 yrs. now.

      • endo

        Sorry, but you are extremely naive. Everything Lucas does is to create merchandising opportunities. The only reason they’d resurrect a character like Darth Maul is to produce and sell more Darth Maul action figures.

      • monsterofmud

        It’s hard to call me naive when I work in the film industry. Of course it’s profitable! But as producers/directors we do have our choices of which paths to blaze, and for that I can’t fault Lucas. At least he gives half of all his earnings to children’s charities, education, and towards the advancement of new film technologies (i.e. – PIXAR and THX wouldn’t exist without him). I for one encourage him to become filthy rich for this reason alone.

      • endo

        The difference is that during the making of ROTJ Lucas began to put merchandising ahead of story. And the prequels are just 1 giant commercial for toys and video games. He’s more machine now than man.

      • monsterofmud

        Thanks for your clarification. I feel the story set-up within the prequels and many episodes of The Clone Wars to be much stronger than in the simplistic tone of the original trilogy, but I do realise that’s a matter of taste and nuance. Would I appreciate less marketing? Yes. But the kids begging for it are the voters that keep it coming; and since all the canonical SW projects are independently-produced productions, it’s a necessary evil to continue funding more story.

      • Wisdom_King

        I’m with you monsterofmud! Lucas is one of the most influential filmmakers in the history of cinema. I have no qualms about him doing quality productions of his greatest creation and making a profit from it. More productions and merchandising wouldn’t exist if people didn’t enjoy it. There is a small,vocal group who enjoy screaming the “George Lucas raped my childhood!” line but it is obvious that the majority of the public enjoy the whole SW saga and what he is doing with it. His multi-disc Blu-Ray set is the top selling collection of all time even at a pricey 80 bucks. Nobody is forcing anybody to buy them or watch the Clone Wars series. People want it and enjoy it! In whatever he is working on he makes a point of it being of the highest quality possible and it shows.
        George, I bow to the power of your force!

      • Shumway

        Endo – Darth Maul action figures sell with or without a film/tv series to accompany it. Sorry, but your cynicism needs to be tucked away in this instance.

      • Heather P

        This is not the first series. Remember Ewok Adventures and Droids? Plus two live-action Ewok movies. And (cough, cough) The Starwars Holiday special.

    • Jamie

      And I guess Johnny Depp makes movies because he is such an “artiste” (prouncounced as french as you want) and not for the “stupid millions” he gets. Why beat up Lucas, others are much worse.

      Darth Maul is and was one of the coolest parts of Star Wars. His double light sabre was fab and he could really move.

  • GLE

    This will not be the first time Maul has returned. Several sources depict Maul returning from the dead in several different forms. The story “Resurrection” from Star Wars Tales 9 depicts a duplicate of Darth Maul created by a cult, which is killed in a duel with Darth Vader. The story “Phantom Menaces” in Star Wars Tales #17 depicts a post-Return of the Jedi Luke Skywalker visiting Maul’s home planet of Iridonia in an ambassadorial capacity, where he faces a “solid state holigram” of Darth Maul, which he destroys.

    In 2005, Dark Horse Comics published Star Wars: Visionaries, a compilation of comic art short stories written and illustrated by members of the Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith art department and ILM artists. One story, “Old Wounds”, considered to be non-canonical to Star Wars lore, depicts Darth Maul surviving his bisection at the hands of Obi-Wan Kenobi, replacing his missing bottom half with cybernetic replacements. After battling Obi-Wan on Tatooine, he is killed by a blaster bolt to the head from Owen Lars, Luke Skywalker’s adoptive uncle.

    • Colin Betteridge

      All those are non-canon.

  • shazbazzar

    “Foul!”
    Not that Maul is returning — we knew that last season.
    Not that rising a character from the dead is poor storytelling — it’s common to mythos.
    Not that GL is making money — at least someone is embracing capitalism these days.

    “Foul!” is my response to the fact that EW got this exclusive when Star Wars Fan Days just happened this past weekend and this could have been announced to the real fans during a Q & A with Dave Filoni. (Yes, I know, “Dave’s not here.”)

    Oh well, I guess this is for the general public, not for those who are already aware of what’s happening in that “galaxy far, far away.” I hope this announcement leads to more viewers — and in the meantime, how about releasing this in theaters alongside TPM 3-D?
    Dave?
    GL?
    Anyone listening?

  • angeljake

    Loved Darth Maul :)

  • bill

    my sisters friend makes $50 an hour on the computer. She has been out of job for 9 months but last month her cheque was $6200 just working on the internet for a few hours. Read about it here CashHar d.cÒm

    • JJ

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