Ostrander Mixes STAR WARS With JAMES BOND in New Series
Launched earlier this month, Star Wars: Agents of the Empire — Hard Targets puts an Imperial operative named Jahan Cross on Planet Alderaan in a mission to foil an assassination attempt. Although he works for the Empire, Cross is keenly aware of the missteps the Emperor has taken and knows not to trust anybody. But it’s not just anybody who gets in Cross’ path in this series: everyone from Darth Vader to Bail Organa, a young Princess Leia, Boba Fett and even Count Dooku make appearances in the story.
Newsarama: John, the subtitle of this one is Hard Targets. Who are the targets, and what is the series about?
John Ostrander: “Hard Targets” can indicate a target that’s hard to hit but it can also mean one that’s a definite lock.
Ostrander: The first hard target for assassination is the current Duke of Serenno. The Duke’s son survives him but is too young to rule so a regent must be selected. Jahan Cross’s mission is to make sure the regent appointed is the one that the Empire wants. That’s not going to be easy.
Nrama: Who is Jahan Cross?
Nrama: The time period this series is set in, just before Star Wars: A New Hope, is rife with classic characters and set-ups. Who can we expect to see in this series in addition to Jahan?
Nrama: By this time, the Empire are full-on evil – so why should a new reader come in and root for an Imperial Intelligence agent like Jahan Cross?
Ostrander: Cross believes he is serving Order over Chaos and that the Empire offers the best opportunity for that. He does have a sense of honor but that is continually being tested and frayed. He also believes the Empire’s report that the Jedi were behind the Clone Wars. Since his father was a diplomat for the Republic, he is aware of just how corrupt the Republic was. Also, a lot of his opponents are even nastier than the Empire. Also, Cross is pretty cool.
Nrama: There's a very James Bondian vibe coming from this — what would you say to that?
Ostrander: Well, that’s how I sold the original pitch – James Bond meets Star Wars. But I’m all into all kinds of espionage fiction – John le Carré, Len Deighton, Robert Ludlum and so on. The intention is to work in as many different espionage tropes as possible and still make it Star Wars.Got a comment? There's lots of conversation on Newsarama's FACEBOOK and TWITTER!