Before he became the fat loathsome slug that we recognize Jabba
as in Return of the Jedi
, Jabba was referred to as a "Hut," and looked quite different. In the 1977 version of A New Hope
, there was to be a confrontation between Han Solo
and Jabba that was filmed, but it was never completed to make the final release.
The script establishes Jabba to be a large, repulsive creature, an effect that George Lucas could not realize at the time. He is described as a "fat, slug-like creature with eyes on extended feelers and a huge ugly mouth." The scene was filmed with a stand-in actor, Declan Mulholland. It would be over 20 years later that this scene was finally completed. The Special Edition of A New Hope featured a computer-generated Jabba replacement for Mulholland.
In the Marvel Comics adaptation of Star Wars, the confrontation remains intact, but Jabba is a tall humanoid with a walrus-like face, a scraggly topknot, and a bright uniform. The Marvel artists used a variation of Mosep, one of Jabba's underlings, glimpsed as an extra in the Mos Eisley scenes.
With the release of The Empire Strikes Back, Jabba gained an extra 't' to become a "Hutt." When he was finally revealed to be a large sluglike creature in Return of the Jedi, Marvel's Jabba was proven apocryphal.
Marvel's Jabba attempted to collect the debt Han owed him, and confronted the smuggler on the planet Orleon. The two fled the world when they discovered it was infested with stone mites. Jabba's ship, the Voidraker, was also infested, and in exchange for dropping the debt, Han rescued Jabba, and let him on the Millennium Falcon. Jabba later discovered the wreck of Crimson Jack's cruiser, a starship that he financed. Since the ship was destroyed by Han Solo (albeit indirectly), Jabba reinstated the Solo's debt. While this particular version of these events didn't happen, it is still possible that the Orleon incident did occur.
In the film Return of the Jedi, Jabba was performed by three puppeteers, David Barclay, Toby Philpott, and Mike Edmonds in his tail. Edmonds also played Logray, the Ewok medicine man.