“It wasn’t easy”: Star Wars Actress Almost Got Strangled Because of 1 Scene that Did Not Look as Dangerous as it Really Was

While she was honored to reprise her part for the 1999 special edition, the actor had a rough during her initial appearance in the franchise, in which she nearly strangled herself.

Star Wars Actress Almost Got Strangled Because of 1 Scene that Did Not Look as Dangerous as it Really Was

SUMMARY

  • The Return of the Jedi added a much-needed layer to its villain with Jabba the Hutt after previous outings only dealing with Siths and faceless goons.
  • Jabba the Hutt's enslaved Oola actor Femi Taylor almost strangled herself during her dance sequence.
  • Despite her character meeting an unsavory end in the Special edition, Taylor felt honored to reprise her part 16 years later.
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George Lucas truly hit it out of the park with the final installment in the original Star Wars trilogy, ’83’s Return of the Jedi, which witnesses one of the franchise’s most iconic villains, Jabba the Hutt. And the reason why he remains so popular is not entirely because of the character itself but what he represents. In the threequel, Jabba the Hutt represents the galaxy’s criminal underworld, which added a layer of complexity to the universe, whose villains up to that point were either Sith or faceless soldiers.

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The factors that made Hutt such a vile character were his lust, greed, and gluttony, who’d capture and enslave humanoids, with one of them being a green-skinned Twi’lek, Oola, played by Femi Taylor. And much like the character, the actor behind the green make-up didn’t have the most thrilling time as the dancing Twi’lek, as she recalled being almost strangled on multiple occasions.

Also read: The Most Powerful Star Wars Character Could Humiliate Darth Vader in a Fight and It’s Not Luke Skywalker

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Jabba the Hutt
Jabba the Hutt

Femi Taylor Almost Got Strangled During Her Dance Sequence for Jabba the Hutt

While dancing with four layers of makeup was hard enough already, the fact that she was chained to the platform only elevated the challenge. Although Femi Taylor did pull off the dancing sequence, even using the chain around her neck as a prop, considering how acrobatic the dance was, she recounted almost strangling herself during the shoot. She said (via /Film),

“Dancing around in the slave collar was very hard, because I was attached by a long leash to a full-sized Jabba. There were four people operating Jabba and they only had this little monitor to see where I was. They had to really be on the ball with what I was doing in terms of the choreography. A couple of times I nearly got strangled while jumping! The tentacles on my head were even more difficult than the leash and slave-collar. They were very heavy to wear as I was dancing. I managed, but it wasn’t easy.”

But despite the challenges involved, Femi Taylor succeeded in acing her part, even though things didn’t end well for her character, especially in the Special edition.

Also read: One Mystery About Luke Skywalker’s Lightsaber That Still Troubles the Star Wars Fans After His Fight With Darth Vader in Cloud City

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Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1983)
Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1983)

Femi Taylor Was Honored to Return for Star Wars: Return of the Jedi Special Edition

In 1997, the Special edition of Star Wars: Return of the Jedi was released, and while George Lucas got to fulfill his vision with the new technology, the end result left a lot of fans upset. While in the 1983 release, we don’t get to witness Oola’s death after she falls into the rancor pit, leaving a possibility that she might’ve survived, in the special edition, we see her getting eaten by the Rancor. Although getting to witness the extent of Jabba’s cruelty was a bit too much for some fans, Femi Taylor felt honored to return, as the actor explained she got to know Lucas more.

“In 1983, I didn’t know George at all. I saw him once when I had a wardrobe fitting and was just introduced to him. He was shy and sweet. I originally mistook him for a second-unit camera guy because he was always behind the camera. Coming back 16 years later, I got on with him like a long-lost pal!”

Also read: “I’m really hoping I’ll get a call”: Godzilla Minus One Director Takashi Yamazaki Makes Humble Request to Disney Over Star Wars Movie

Femi Taylor as Oola
Femi Taylor as Oola

While it has been decades since Taylor last donned the green makeup, her character remains beloved by the fandom, with many convinced that Oola is still vastly underrated.

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Return of the Jedi is available to stream on Disney Plus.

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Written by Santanu Roy

Articles Published: 1582

Santanu Roy is a film enthusiast with a deep love for the medium of animation while also being obsessed with The Everly Brothers, Billy Joel, and The Platters. Having expertise in everything related to Batman, Santanu spends most of his time watching and learning films, with Martin Scorsese and Park Chan-wook being his personal favorites. Apart from pursuing a degree in animation, he also possesses a deep fondness for narrative-driven games and is currently a writer at Fandomwire with over 1500 articles.