There's nothing more classic than Shakespeare–except maybe Star Wars. And if you like two things, there must be a mash-up out there somewhere, as proven by Ian Doescher's William Shakespeare's Star Wars, a book with more combined staying power than pretty much anything ever written.


Is George Lucas' writing just a little too provincial for your taste? Does Shakespeare not set his stories far enough in the past? Ever thought that all Star Wars really needed was a Chorus? Great! Doescher's officially licensed, faithful retelling of the film A New Hope combines the action and lasers of a "star-crossed galaxy far, far away" with iambic pentameter—bam, problem solved.

Just a taste:

LEIA                                      —O help
Me, Obi-Wan Kenobi, help. Thou art
Mine only hope.

LUKE                                      —I wonder who she is.
Whoever she may be, whatever is
Her cause, I shall unto her pleas respond.
Not e’en were she my sister could I know
A duty of more weight than I feel now.
It seemeth she some dreadful trouble hath—
Mayhap I should replay the message whole.

R2-D2     Beep, squeak, squeak! Meep, hoo, meep.

C-3PO                                     —R2 doth say
The bolt restraining him short-circuited
His full recording system. So saith he,
That if thou wouldst with speed remove the bolt,
He may the full recording then display.
[Aside:] What purpose shall I serve unto this man?
Am I to guide, encourage, counsel—what?
Thus shall I play the wise interpreter,
For truly ’tis the part I know the best.

LUKE    What? Aye, thou seem’st too small to run away
If I should take this off. Good little droid,
So cleverly thou bringest messages,
That thou hast won my trust. Now, thou art free.
[Exit Princess Leia from beam.]
But wait, where hath she gone? What villainy!
How hast thou dampen’d that celestial light
Wherein she spoke of late? Now bring her back,
Play back the message full, thou naughty droid!

R2-D2    Meep, meep?

William Shakespeare's Star Wars is coming on July 2.

Will you check this one out? Teachers, would you ever consider using William Shakespeare's Star Wars to teach students how to read the Bard?

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