Star Wars: Vader Episode I: Shards of the Past (2018)


Vader Episode I: Shards of the Past is a 2018 Star Wars fan film created by YouTuber Star Wars Theory.

On 20 December 2018, a screening was held at the Landmark’s Regent Theatre in Los Angeles, CA, and on 21 December 2018, it was released to YouTube.

It is intended to be the first episode in a miniseries.


The film takes place eight months after Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, and focuses around one of the main villains of the Star Wars saga, Darth Vader. Fighting between the loss of Padmé, and the new cursed life he now leads, Vader must do what must be done when a surviving Jedi Master from Order 66 has lured him to the home planet of his late wife’s tomb.


  • Dupree Jones as Darth Vader.
  • Jesse Gomez as the voice of Darth Vader.
  • Star Wars Theory as unmasked Darth Vader.
  • Marik Knight as Young Anakin Skywalker.
  • Steven Bartlett as Emperor Palpatine.
  • Bradley Klein as the voice of Emperor Palpatine.
  • Catherine LaSalle as Padmé Amidala.
  • Andrew Branch as Commander Fox.

Copyright Controversy

  • Prior to the film’s release, Star Wars Theory exchanged emails with Lucasfilm asking permission to crowdfund the short film or make any revenue from it.
    • Lucasfilm permitted its creation, but with no crowdfunding or revenue.
  • After its release, Warner/Chappell Music and Disney gave the film a copyright claim on YouTube about its soundtrack.
    • Star Wars Theory had hired a composer to make an original soundtrack, which was inspired by the Star Wars score, thus making the claim false.
    • This also meant that instead of the video being unmonitised as Lucasfilm requested, it would generate ad revenue for Warner/Chappell and Disney.
    • Star Wars Theory explained, “It’s not about the money, it’s the principle. When [Lucasfilm] come to me with these rules… but then someone goes in there and manually claims it… to me, that’s very vindictive and very rude. Disney makes billions of dollars. This is pennies to them. It seems that they really don’t respect anything at all for the fandom.”
  • Over the Internet, Star Wars Theory received support including from Newsweek, Syfy Wire, fans, and other YouTubers.
  • On 16 January 2019, Star Wars Theory announced that Lucasfilm forced the copyright strike to come down, restoring the video to its original state.
  • Vader Episode I: Shards of the Past has received positive critical reviews.

Star Wars Series

Production & Filming Details

  • Director(s): Danny Ramirez.
  • Producer(s): Ian McClellan, Brandon Hall and Star Wars Theory.
  • Writer(s): Danny Ramirez, Star Wars Theory, and Nikolaj Wejp-Olsen.
  • Music: Jacob A. Cadmus and J. Scott Rakozy.
  • Cinematography: Matthew Halla.
  • Editor(s): Danny Ramirez.
  • Production:
  • Distributor(s):
  • Release Date: 20 December 2018 (Los Angeles Premiere) and 21 December 2018.
  • Running Time: 17 minutes.
  • Rating: TV-14.
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

Video Link


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