- "May the Force be with us."
- ―Admiral Ackbar
Gial Ackbar was a veteran male Mon Calamari soldier and revolutionary leader during the Clone Wars, the Galactic Civil War, and the conflict between the Resistance and the First Order. Throughout his sixty years of service, Ackbar was regarded as a brilliant tactician.
Ackbar was captain of the Mon Calamari Guard during the Clone Wars and fought in the Battle of Mon Cala, in which he helped to secure Prince Lee-Char's ascent as King of Mon Cala and repel the Confederacy of Independent Systems. After the rise of the Galactic Empire, Ackbar became the foremost military commander in the Alliance to Restore the Republic, emerging as a symbol of defiance against the Empire's subjugation of non-humans. His presence attracted Mon Calamari support for the Alliance, thus supplying the Mon Calamari star cruisers that made up a bulk of the Alliance Fleet.
From his command ship of Home One, Ackbar acted as the fleet commander during the Battle of Endor, in which the Alliance successfully mounted an attack that led to the destruction of the Empire's second Death Star and the death of Emperor Palpatine. After the Battle of Endor, the Alliance formed the New Republic. Ackbar became a fleet admiral of the New Republic Starfleet and led the Republic to its victory over the Empire during the Battle of Jakku. After the battle on Jakku ended, the Empire retreated into the Unknown Regions and Ackbar retired to Mon Cala.
Three decades later, the emerging threat of the First Order, which arose from the ashes of the Empire, led Princess Leia Organa to form the Resistance without the support of the Republic that had turned a blind eye to the First Order. Organa, the general of the Resistance, coaxed Ackbar out of his retirement to serve in the Resistance. Ackbar served in the Resistance base on D'Qar, where he helped oversee the battle to destroy the First Order superweapon known as Starkiller Base.
Gial Ackbar was born on the aquatic planet Mon Cala during the last years of the Galactic Republic. Mon Cala was a part of the Republic, ruled by Supreme Chancellor Sheev Palpatine, and Ackbar eventually enlisted into military service to the Mon Calamari Guard, which was tasked with protecting Mon Cala's monarchs and dignitaries. Ackbar eventually worked his way through the ranks of the guard, and became its captain; therefore, he also became the chief military advisor to the leader of the ocean world.
The Clone Wars
Captain of the Mon Calamari Guard
- "Soldiers of Mon Calamari: This is your home! Do not let it fall!"
- ―Ackbar, to his troops
King Yos Kolina ruled Mon Cala during the Clone Wars, between the Confederacy of Independent Systems and the Galactic Republic. The war subsequently came to Mon Cala when Separatist Riff Tamson assassinated Kolina. Members of the Quarren Isolation League, however, which was led by Chieftan Nossor Ri, took credit for the crime in order to provoke a civil war on the planet, thereby preventing the rightful heir to the throne, the young Prince Lee-Char, from ascending to it. Ackbar, as the captain of the Mon Cal Knights, became Lee-Char's protector. In the Mon Calamari capital, a meeting was soon held, where Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker and senator Padmé Amidala of Naboo attended as representatives to the Republic. However, the Quarren isolationists ensured Tamson—one of Count Dooku's many Separatist enforcers—was present as well. The Quarren dignitaries voiced that they did not want Lee-Char as their king because he was too young and inexperienced. As the debates went on, what the Quarren did want became clear: a Quarren king, not another Mon Calamari ruler. Lee-Char assured the Quarren that he was dedicated to serving both races in a mutually beneficial way, Tamson, however, ordered him to cease speaking, as he had not "earned the right." Ackbar rushed in and reminded the Karkarodon that he had no say, as he was just an observer for the Confederacy. Ri then said that the Quarren, their argument not agreed to, were done with the negotiations and exited.
Ackbar, Skywalker and Amidala reported in to the Jedi Council, specifically Jedi Master Yoda, aboard a Republic frigate, where Ackbar informed the council that a civil war on Mon Cala was inevitable. Yoda, therefore, in order to keep Mon Cala aligned with the Republic, dispatched a company of clone SCUBA troopers, Jedi Kit Fisto and Skywalker's Padawan Ahsoka Tano, to bolster the defenses of the Mon Calamari. Ackbar then met with Mon Cala's senator in the Galactic Senate, Meena Tills, who officially assigned Ackbar to protect Lee-Char during the forthcoming battle. Ackbar, however, thought it foolhardy to take the prince onto the battlefront, as he was too inexperienced in combat, though, he gave in, as it was a longstanding tradition for the monarch of Mon Cala to lead the soldiers into battle.
Later, Lee-Char addressed the gather troops, telling them he did not believe the Quarren intended to attack, but before he finished, the Quarren army attacked, along with Separatist aqua droids led by Tamson; prompting Ackbar to proclaim "It's an attack." Ackbar and Skywalker quickly rallied their forces to defend the city, and held true to Till's will and took the prince to the front lines. Ackbar then led the charge into the enemy ranks and ordered his troops not to let their homeworld fall to the confederacy. The fighting continued, and soon thereafter, Yoda came through: The Republic's reinforcements arrived. Ackbar moved back to the prince's position, handed him a blaster, telling him to earn the respect of the people; he had to lead the fight. Lee-Char, realizing the wisdom in Ackbar's words, began to rally their forces. The gamble soon payed off when the droids and Quarren retreated to their transports. Ackbar voiced to the Jedi that they had won the first assault. Tills, thinking they had completely defeated the Separatists, told Lee-Char to start dictating for the Separatists' surrender. Ackbar halted Till's hasty assumptions; the first wave had been beaten, not the battle. However, just then, dozens of massive cyborg Hydroid Medusas descended upon the city. The seemingly invincible jellyfish swept their tentacles through the clone troopers and Mon Calamari, electrocuting many. More droids materialized from behind, and as they were outmatched, Ackbar told the prince it was time to retreat. The pair agreed that the caves on the ocean floor were the safest place, so they fled to the caves. Once there, Lee-Char expressed his concern that his father would have been disappointed in him for the failures that he had befallen during the day's events. Ackbar, however, assured the young prince that Kolina would have been proud of his son.
While regrouping in the caves, the Jedi Council was contacted in order to arrange the deployment of more Republic soldiers. However, before an agreement could be reached, the Council's signal was jammed, leaving Ackbar and the others unsure if the council planned to send reinforcements. Ackbar and Skywalker agreed that it was likely troops would be sent, but Lee-Char believed they would arrive too late to do any good against the Confederacy. Taking the lead, Lee-Char devised a way to escape the planet: Take the Republic frigate on the water's surface to Coruscant, the Republic's capital. The plan was agreed on, so the group began the ascent to the surface. A plethora of enemy troops stood in their path, so Fisto diverted the enemy forces and sent down several One Man Submersible Devilfish to expedite the ascent. However, as they neared the ship, it exploded and the debris rained down over Ackbar and the others. Skywalker told the others to grab onto the debris so it could pull them back down to the ocean floor. Ackbar did so, and as they fell, he voiced that they should split up into two teams to better protect the true location of the prince. Lee-Char agreed, and Ackbar told him to be careful, as he was Mon Calamari's last hope. The prince then went with Tano, Fisto and the clones, while Ackbar's group, Amidala, Skywalker and Tills, planned to disrupt the city's communications, which would prevent Tamson from knowing that Republic reinforcements were incoming until it was too late for him to mount a proper counterattack.
Ackbar, Skywalker and Tills headed to the city's central planetary scanner mast to topple it. Skywalker used the Force to cause it to collapse while Ackbar defended him from aqua droids. The group retreated after the mission succeeded. However, Tamson correctly deduced that the scanner mast alone had been targeted because Republic reinforcements were forthcoming. Therefore, he launched another attack. Ackbar and the others fought the Separatist soldiers in order to keep their attention on them, rather than searching for the prince. Ackbar and the others were soon surrounded by Hydroid Medusas, but were saved when the Republic reinforcements arrived: A Venator-class Star Destroyer deployed members of the Gungan Grand Army from Naboo—who, like the Mon Calamari and Quarren, were amphibians.
The Gungans attacked using their traditional weapons—boomas and atlatls—whose plasma-based technologies disabled the Hydroid Medusas, droids and Quarren alike, and freed Ackbar, Tills and Skywalker, who joined the turning tide of the battle. A Separatist Trident-class assault ship soon arrived and began spinning; creating a vortex that confused the battlefront and scattered soldiers on both sides. Ackbar grabbed on to Skywalker, swam him to the gunship, and threw him up to it. Skywalker severed one of its legs with his lightsaber, causing the craft to spin out of control and crash. However, with their surge in forces nullified, the Republic-aligned troops were taken prisoner by the Separatists.
Ackbar, his troops and the clones were taken to a prison camp on the ocean floor, while Skywalker, Amidala and Fisto were personally interrogated by Tamson. Tano and the prince, however, managed to elude capture again, but the Lee-Char thought to rally the forces—Mon Calamari, Gungan, clone, Jedi and even Quarren—to all together overwhelm Tamson and his droids. So he infiltrated the prison camp Ackbar was detained in to ask his guidance. Ackbar and Tills rejoiced when they saw the prince alive, but were confounded when Lee-Char explained his daring plan to reunify the citizens of Mon Cala against the Separatist invaders. Ackbar was shocked that the prince would ally himself with the people who had killed his father, but Lee-Char told Ackbar that he knew for fact that Tamson had done so. Tano added that she had seen similar occurrences of Dooku manipulating a planet's people to start a civil war, so the prince said that he would find and show Ri the truth. Ackbar agreed to the prince's noble plan and said he would marshal the Mon Calamari troops for battle. Lee-Char also gave the captain his signal of when to attack: when a Quarren attacked a Separatist. Just then, a legion of aqua droids appeared and put the prince under arrest. Lee-Char willingly went with his captors in order to confront Ri and show him the truth.
Later, Lee-Char was sentenced to death by Tamson, and ordered that all the prisoners be taken to the capital to witness the execution. Tamson's Karkarodon enforcers surrounded the prince while Tamson read aloud the prince's crimes against the Separatist state. Meanwhile, Ackbar and the other prisoners watched from the side. One of Ri's aides materialized and handed Ackbar his baton and informed him that Lee-Char's boldness had worked: Ri and the Quarren had agreed to expel to Confederates and reclaim Mon Cala. Ackbar looked across the plaza and nodded to Ri. The Quarren soldiers quietly distributed arms to the clones and troops, while Ri swam across the plaza, created an ink cloud, and grabbed the prince. Ackbar's troops opened fire on the Separatists and the battle raged once more. Ackbar charged the aqua droids, leading the battle from his side, while Lee-Char proved himself by leading the rest of the forces and killing Tamson, a fearsome warrior—thereby freeing Mon Cala. Ackbar, the Jedi and Ri, rushed to the young prince and congratulated him.
Some time later, Ackbar attended Lee-Char's coronation as the king of Mon Cala, like his father had once done. Ackbar stood to the right of the ceremonial throne, witnessing Ri's pledge of allegiance of the Quarren to King Lee-Char. And Lee-Char likewise pledged his loyalty to all the people of Mon Cala.
Galactic Civil War
Following the Battle of Yavin, the Empire got word that the Rebels had a base in one of the Massassi Temples and set out to attack it. Ackbar was among the Rebel leaders in charge of getting the fleet together to help with the evacuation. He helped organize the troops and gather the supplies on the planet for evacuation.  Sometime after this, Ackbar sent Luke Skywalker on a mission to Rodia in hopes to open up supply lines for the Rebellion. 
Ackbar guided two Rebel soldiers while they were stranded on the desert world of Tatooine. He gave them orders via hologram. He informed them of incoming waves of AT-STs that were in the area. He also sent drop pods to their location with supplies such as weapons and med-packs. Once the Empire's presence was defeated, he sent for a rescue team to recover the Rebels. 
Battle of Endor
- "It's a trap!"
- ―Admiral Ackbar
Despite the Empire's defeat at Endor, they continued to fight, launching Operation: Cinder, a contingency plan issued posthumously by the Emperor. Over three months after the Battle of Endor, the Alliance officially reorganized into a New Republic, continuing to defend against the Imperial attacks. When the Republic discovered a secret Imperial meeting on Akiva, they sent Captain Wedge Antilles to investigate. Soon after, the captain went missing, and Ackbar, learning of Antilles' disappearance, sent out scouts to find him. The scouts were shot down by the Imperials, and Ackbar then received a short transmission from Antilles, explaining the dire situation. In response, Ackbar prepared a small fleet, which moved to Akiva and fought the Imperial forces, resulting in a Republic victory. A month later, Ackbar presented a medal to Norra Wexley for her service in rescuing Antilles.
One year after the Alliance's victory at Endor, Ackbar led the New Republic forces to the final victory over the Empire at Jakku. Sometime later, Ackbar retired to his homeworld of Mon Cala. Twenty-three years later, Ackbar was coaxed out of his peaceful retirement by General Leia Organa to join the Resistance.
At some point after his recruitment, Ackbar was captured by the First Order. Afraid that the First Order might execute him, the Resistance assembled a team led by Captain Hoff, with the sole purpose of locating Ackbar. Hoff's team eventually captured a First Order droid named O-MR1, who they believed knew the location of Ackbar. On their way back to the Resistance base, the team's ship crashed on Taul, with the only survivors being a group of droids, including O-MR1, led by C-3PO. The droids began following a signal they received from a First Order vessel, but on their way they were attacked spice spiders and later by can-cell, resulting in the destruction of all of the droids, except C-3PO and O-MR1. The two droids finally found the vessel, but before they could contact the Resistance, it began raining acid. They took cover under another ship's wing, but knew that if they didn't contact help soon, the control panel would melt. O-MR1, who at this point saw C-3PO as his friend, told 3PO the location of Ackbar, before sacrificing himself to contact Poe Dameron for help. Some time after O-MR1 had melted, Dameron arrived to pick up C-3PO, who told Dameron the location of Ackbar. He was stationed with Organa on D'Qar during the Assault on Starkiller Base. He was present when R2-D2 and BB-8 revealed the location of the Jedi Master and Organa's twin brother Luke Skywalker.
Behind the scenes
Admiral Ackbar was introduced in Return of the Jedi, where he was puppeted by Tim Rose and voiced by Erik Bauersfeld. They reprised their roles for The Force Awakens. In The Clone Wars TV series, Ackbar was voiced by Artt Butler. His first name was revealed in the 2012 book The Essential Guide to Warfare, and was upheld as canon by Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know.
- LEGO Star Wars: Droid Tales – "Exit from Endor"
- LEGO Star Wars: Droid Tales – "Crisis on Coruscant"
- LEGO Star Wars: Droid Tales – "Gambit on Geonosis"
- LEGO Star Wars: Droid Tales Episodes I-III
- LEGO Star Wars: The Resistance Rises – "Poe to the Rescue"
- Star Wars in 100 Scenes
- Ultimate Star Wars
- "Blaster"—Star Wars Insider 152
- ; image #2
- ; image #15 (of 15)
- ; image #16 (of 17)
- Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know (First identified as Gial)
- Star Wars: Ships of the Galaxy
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary
- Star Wars The Force Awakens Series 1 (Card: Admiral Ackbar)
- Star Wars Character Encyclopedia: Updated and Expanded
Notes and references
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5
- ↑ Bloodline
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Water War"
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Prisoners"
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Star Wars 4: Skywalker Strikes, Part IV
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Aftermath
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 Star Wars: Episode VII The Force Awakens
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 Star Wars: The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Ultimate Star Wars
- ↑ Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know
- ↑ Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "TV series"
- ↑ 15.0 15.1 15.2 Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Gungan Attack"
- ↑ Star Wars: Princess Leia, Part I
- ↑ Heir to the Jedi
- ↑ Star Wars Battlefront
- ↑ Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi
- ↑ Star Wars: Shattered Empire, Part IV
- ↑ Star Wars Special: C-3PO: The Phantom Limb
- Ackbar on Wikipedia
- "Being Admiral Ackbar: Berkeley man reflects on brush with Star Wars" - interview with Ackbar actor Eric Bauerfeld