From the MoviesSenator Bail Organa was the First Chairman and Viceroy of Alderaan, a hero of the Clone Wars, and the head of the Royal Family of Alderaan. An influential politician, he was a loyal Senator who commanded the ear of Supreme Chancellor Palpatine himself.
A member of the Loyalist Committee, Bail Organa was deeply concerned with the stability of the Republic during the Separatist crisis. He realized that drastic measures were required if the Separatists continued to push the galaxy to the brink of war. While he recognized the need for the Senate to take ownership of the newly discovered Kamino clone army, he knew it was a political impossibility. Though it was not his recommendation, he stood by and watched as Palpatine was granted emergency powers to save the Republic from this dire threat.
It was with great dismay that he watched the Republic transform during the war years. The Senate willingly relinquished more executive powers to Chancellor Palpatine, all in the name of increased security. To criticize such actions would result in being branded a traitor, so Bail was careful to conceal his misgivings. He spoke of them only in a small audience of like-minded Senators.
In clandestine gatherings, Senators like Giddean Danu, Padmé Amidala, Terr Taneel, Chi Eekway, Bana Breemu and Fang Zar voiced their concerns. Alert to the likelihood that Palpatine would not give up power once the Clone Wars ended, Organa and Senator Mon Mothma were already putting proactive plans into motion. They envisioned an organization dedicated to preserving the ideals of the Republic, one that drew membership from idealists within the Senate but operated outside of the Senate chambers. Though they skirted around the word in these early tentative days, Mothma and Organa were planning rebellion.
During the Clone Wars, Organa grew to become a friend to influential Jedi Masters including Obi-Wan Kenobi and Yoda. When the Jedi were branded traitors to the Republic, and the Jedi Temple was attacked by an elite force of clone troopers, Bail Organa came to investigate the carnage. Thinking that his position in the Senate afforded him some measure of authority, Organa tried to get to the bottom of the assault. Instead, he was shooed away by the implacable clone troopers, who told him a Jedi rebellion was afoot. Bail left the blazing temple, not before witnessing the clone troopers shoot a young Padawan attempting to escape the destruction.
Realizing that all the Jedi were at risk, Bail attempted to contact Kenobi and Yoda. He homed in their respective distress signals, collecting Yoda from Kashyyyk and Obi-Wan from Utapau. Their clone ranks had turned against them. Organa then received an urgent call from Coruscant; the Chancellor was calling an emergency session of congress. Aboard his starship, he returned to the capital, secretly taking Obi-Wan and Yoda aboard so they could investigate the situation in the Temple.
In the Senate, Bail barely arrived in time to hear Chancellor Palpatine declare himself Emperor. His worst fears came to pass. The Republic was dead, replaced by a dictatorship.
When Kenobi's apprentice, Anakin Skywalker, succumbed to the dark side, Organa hid one of Skywalker's twin offspring in the high court of Alderaan. Bail and his wife had been looking to adopt a child, and he came to raise and love young Leia Organa as his own child.
Leia followed in Bail's political footsteps, becoming the youngest member of the Imperial Senate. Leia also decided to support the Alliance, using her diplomatic immunity to smuggle supplies and information to Rebels. Together, the Organas uncovered crucial technical information about the Empire's greatest weapon, the Death Star.
Bail sent Leia on a mission to locate Obi-Wan Kenobi and recruit him into the Alliance to help face the Death Star challenge. Leia failed, and her mission was eventually picked up by Luke Skywalker. Bail Organa was killed when the Death Star destroyed Alderaan.
From the Expanded UniverseThough he grew to become a beloved leader on Alderaan, Bail Organa's ascent to that position was not without controversy. For a brief time before Organa inherited the Viceroy title, there was a dispute regarding the appropriate lineage of ascendancy. After three deadlocked votes, a special dispatch from the Republic government in the form of Jedi Jorus C'baoth was sent to oversee the ascendancy. C'baoth guided the tribunal to the decision that saw the appointment of Organa.
A pragmatic man, Organa was nonetheless compassionate and championed benevolent causes such as the Refugee Relief Movement. With his approval, Alderaan loosened its immigration restrictions to allow an influx of refugees displaced by the growing Separatist crisis that preceded the Clone Wars. He was vocally critical of policies that targeted the downtrodden, such as a Senate-approved transit tax that made it difficult for refugees to resettle.
After the Clone Wars, Organa led Alderaan into an age of prosperity, helping the battle-scarred world recover from the ravages of conflict. At his urging, weapons were banned from Alderaan to demonstrate the planet's philosophy of peace and life. A great deal of weaponry was stashed aboard the freighter Another Chance, which was set to jump randomly through hyperspace. It served as an emergency cache should Alderaan ever need to take up arms again.
Organa and his wife, Breha, Alderaan's Minister of Education, raised their adoptive daughter as if she were their biological child. Leia learned the nature of political life from her adoptive parents, as well as the codes and protocol of high court life from her aunts Rouge, Tia, and Celly. Bail's servants, such as Tarrik, took care not to spoil or pamper the Princess. Nothing was spared in Leia's education. She learned politics and history from Arn Horada, and martial skills from Giles Durane the Weapons Master.
Leia learned much from records of Bail's Senatorial career. Organa's cynicism and realism often clashed with the youthful idealism of Chandrilan Senator Mon Mothma. The two did agree that Palpatine had to be stopped. Despite being political rivals, Mon Mothma credits Bail Organa for envisioning the structure of the Rebel Alliance.
In a series of meetings at Cantham House, Organa and Mothma devised and developed a plan for the Rebel Alliance. At first, Organa was shocked by the idea of open revolution, but incidents such as the Ghorman Massacre cemented his resolve. Organa realized the Republic was dead. While he continued publicly acting as an opponent to Mon Mothma, Organa's position on such committees as Finance, Appropriations, and Intelligence Oversight allowed him to funnel money, weapons and information to the fledgling Rebel Alliance. Organa's membership in the Senate Military Oversight Committee made him quite adept and forging the structure of the Alliance Military. One of Palpatine's loyal Senators told Organa that the Emperor planned to arrest Mon Mothma. Organa informed Mothma, allowing her to escape the clutches of the Imperial Security Bureau.
When Organa retired from the Senate, he returned to Alderaan. He reclaimed his title as Viceroy and First Chairman of Alderaan. There, he convinced his people to renounce the pacifism instated after the Clone Wars and quietly supported the rebellion during the early organization of Resistance movements into a unified Alliance to Restore the Republic. Preferring to stay on Alderaan, he sent a number of ministers, such as Hric Dahlney, to deal with Alliance contacts. Organa was hesitant to take up arms, a position that Dahlney made clear to early Resistance representatives. The then-17 year old Winter, a childhood friend to Leia Organa, was influential in convincing Bail otherwise.
Organa knew that his open opposition to Palpatine during his Senate days would make him a target of Imperial reprisals. His actions at this time were veiled, and carefully plotted. Security experts constructed mono-molecular shielded caverns beneath the Royal Palace. Organa founded a secret Alliance starfighter base on the crystalline world of Isis using classified Alderaanian scouting expedition data he secured when in the Senate.
A mission to Ralltiir allowed Rebel spies to inform Leia Organa of the Death Star menace. Later, at a diplomatic dinner with Lord Tion, an Imperial noble, Leia incriminated herself by revealing knowledge of the top secret project. In a scuffle that ensued, Leia killed Lord Tion. Bail covered for her, arranging a convenient "hunting accident" alibi on one of Alderaan's game preserves. He sent Leia on that fateful mission to locate and recruit Obi-Wan. It was the last time Bail would see his adoptive and beloved daughter.
Shortly before the Battle of Hoth, the Imperials used rumors of Bail Organa's survival in the shielded chambers of the Royal Palace to lure Leia Organa into a trap. Leia, aboard the Millennium Falcon, ventured into the Graveyard of Alderaan -- the name used to describe the asteroid remains of the planet -- but managed to escape before Vader could capture her.
Behind the ScenesBail Organa was first named in the original script and novelization of A New Hope. He was featured the Star Wars's National Public Radio Dramatization in 1981, in an episode entitled "Points of Origin." Bail is named Prestor in this source, suggesting that 'Bail' might be a title, a cue that the 1997 novel The Paradise Snare took when presenting that character.
Bail Organa was to have appeared in the Senate sequences of Episode I, though the footage containing him was ultimately edited out of the final film. In the screenplay, Organa seconds Queen Amidala's Vote of No Confidence that topples Supreme Chancellor Valorum's rule. In the resulting power vaccuum, several other senators are nominated to succeed Valorum, including Bail Antilles of Alderaan, who is a separate politician and not intended to be the same character as Bail Organa.
In the excised footage of The Phantom Menace, actor Adrian Dunbar played Organa. In Cloak of Deception, the description of Bail Antilles closely matches Adrian Dunbar, suggesting that's ultimately what his character became. In Attack of the Clones, Bail Organa is played by Jimmy Smits.
Keywords: Databank - Episode III, Databank - Episode II, Databank - Expanded Universe
Filed under: Vault, Character
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