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George Lucas Cut The Biggest Lightsaber Battle In Star Wars

Think you've seen all the best lightsaber talent in the galaxy far, far away? Well, think again.

The glowing, lightly humming weapon has been the staple weapon of the Star Wars franchise since its inception in the late 1970s — playing a major part in  epic battles between the Jedi and the Trade Federation, the Sith, Stormtroopers, and even droid armies. But somehow, despite all the lightsaber fights that fans of the films have seen over the years, there's one that still hasn't been shared with the world. And it isn't just any ol' lightsaber battle — it's apparently the best one ever.

Nick Gillard, the stunt coordinator for the Star Wars prequel trilogy, recently revealed to Entertainment Weekly that he had mapped out a lightsaber battle so incredible, it would have trumped the one between Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor), Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson), and Darth Maul (Ray Park and Peter Serafinowicz) in The Phantom Menace. He explained that the lightsaber fight that took place on Utapau in Revenge of the Sith, during which Obi-Wan battles against General Grievous and his bodyguards, looked a little different in the original version of the film. Sadly, Star Wars creator George Lucas scrapped Gillard's version of the battle, leaving Star Wars fans without what Gillard says is the best lightsaber fight in the franchise's history. 

"The most complicated fight" in the Star Wars saga

Before ridding the galaxy of the devious General Grievous, Obi-Wan first needs to dispense of his bodyguards. The theatrical cut of Revenge of the Sith sees the Jedi Master using the Force to pull a piece of the ceiling down on five of the six bodyguards Grievous sets on him. However, with the help of Gillard's input, the original version of that scene saw an actual fight between them. 

In order to get ready for the elaborate battle that was planned, Obi-Wan actor McGregor had to spend weeks training for every flip, twist, and turn he would have to do in the complicated choreographed sequence. Unfortunately, when it came down to it, the production was so behind on filming that they couldn't afford the amount of time the sequence was going to take to shoot. Lucas had to make a difficult decision: given that the lightsaber battle — despite being insanely cool — wasn't important to the narrative, he decided to drastically cut down on the scene's filming time by simply opting to drop part of a ceiling on Grievous' bodyguards instead. One of the bodyguards survived the dropped ceiling, leaving Obi-Wan with a chance to behead him in what we can only assume is a highly watered-down version of the original battle.

"It was the most complicated fight we ever did," Gillard explained. "And George said, 'I'm really sorry, I'm going to drop a container on five of them!'"

With Grievous' bodyguards fighting with their electro-staffs and Obi-Wan wielding his signature lightsaber, this scene promises at the outset to be an electrified battle. The final result does see Obi-Wan brace himself as though he were readying for that kind of all-or-nothing fight, but it falls a bit flat when he instead looks up and sees a container attached to the ceiling — pulling on it with the Force and dropping it on the bodyguards, quickly eliminating them from the fight. If the sequence played out like Gillard had intended it to, it would have been infinitely cooler.

Despite what's sounding more and more like the most epic lightsaber battle of the Star Wars canon thus far, fans have never seen it. Sadly for them, even a #ReleaseTheSnyderCut-style petition won't help here, given that Gillard seems to be implying that the scene never even made it to the front of the camera.

Revenge of the Sith delivered on lightsaber battles

Rather than engaging in a battle with Anakin Skywalker's (Hayden Christensen) teacher on Utapau, the bodyguards got just a glimpse of the action at the beginning of Revenge of the Sith when Anakin and Obi-Wan infiltrated Grievous' spaceship to rescue Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) from Count Dooku (Christopher Lee). Formidable forces in that scene, both were unceremoniously disposed of by the end of the film.

Disappointing as Gillard's revelation may be, as Cinema Blend points out, Revenge of the Sith is full of some awesome lightsaber battles that many of the other Star Wars films lack. The film starts with Anakin and Obi-Wan on Grievous' ship, where they battle the robotic General, his bodyguards, and Count Dooku (although, that last one was mostly Anakin after Obi-Wan was nearly disposed of by a balcony). Obi-Wan later fights Grievous and finally gets rid of him, Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson) battles against Palpatine, and Yoda (Frank Oz) also faces off against Palpatine in an amazing battle in the senate. Plus, fans are treated to a brutally emotional stand-off between Obi-Wan and Anakin on Mustafar after he discovers his Padawan has gone to the dark side. Though George Lucas cut the best lightsaber fight in all ofStar Wars history from Revenge of the Sith, the film was still full of badass battles.

Whether or not the upcoming Star Wars flick The Rise of Skywalker will provide fans with a lightsaber battle to fill the void of the missing scene from Revenge of the Sith is yet to be seen. Gillard himself will have to be the final judge on how cool the battles actually are, but there's no telling just how biased he may be.