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Homing Beacon #30 and the Episode II Novelization!

Today the latest Homing Beacon has been delivered and we learn that Best-selling author R.A. Salvatore has now half completed writing the Episode II novelization. Though there was some trepidation in originally accepting the assignment, he found he couldn't turn it down.

"Sure it's high profile, so in that instance it's good for my career," says Salvatore. "But more than that, it's high creativity. Even though it's a novelization and I'm playing off someone else, I get to sit down with George Lucas and listen to the guy who created all this. That's a life experience. You don't turn things like that down."

Like Terry Brooks, who wrote The Phantom Menace novelization, Salvatore will get to expand the story of the film, and tell of events not shown on the screen. With Lucas' guidance, he is getting insight into the characters and complexities of Episode II.

Salvatore explains, "I was able to add in a lot of things that I think will complement [Lucas'] vision. Some of them might not be approved, and I'll have to make some changes, but that's part of the process too."

When Salvatore first read the script, one scene jumped out at him. "When Amidala first sees Anakin again, I really enjoyed writing that scene. I know that the most powerful scenes in the movie are going to be when those two are together."

The author adds, "Their relationship is very complex. Here's a guy we know is heading for darkness. I was afraid that the turnover for Anakin was gonna be just a simple thing. People don't snap like that and go over to the dark side. Maybe they have temporary rage, but they don't become Darth Vader because of that. But with Anakin, there's a LOT more to it. That's the real beauty of it. She's a big part in what's going on in him. It's all with the best intentions, they're just misplaced. I think that was a nice touch with the script."

The Episode II novelization is due for a summer 2002 release by Del Rey Books.

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