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"…Mustafar is where Jedi go to die."
Hera Syndulla[src]

Mustafar was a small volcanic planet located in the Mustafar system, situated between two gas giants in the Outer Rim Territories that was aligned with the Confederacy of Independent Systems during the Clone Wars and later taken over by the Galactic Empire after the Techno Union was nationalized at the conclusion of the conflict.

During the Imperial Era, Mustafar became a fortified Imperial world as it housed Fortress Vader, the personal sanctum of the Sith Lord Darth Vader.

DescriptionEdit

"Mustafar is not like other planets. It is unique. Deep beneath its surface rests a locus for the Dark side of the Force."
―Darth Sidious, to Darth Vader[src]
Mustafar-Landscape

The landscape of Mustafar during the day

Mustafar was a scorching lava world located in the Outer Rim Territories, and had an array of valuable minerals which were mined by the Techno Union, and was the headquarters of the infamous Black Sun during the Clone Wars.[7]

The planet was situated between the two gas giants Lefrani and Jestefad. The two giants were in a tug-of-gravity with both trying to claim tiny Mustafar as a moon by pulling the planet towards them. Mustafar owes its hellish volcanic landscape to this battle as it causes massive tidal waves that heat the planet's interior. Jestefad's gigantic electromagnetic field swamps Mustafar, generating huge electrical storms on the planet.[5]

While still very hot, the lava on Mustafar was of a lower temperature than that found on other worlds, due to unusual mineral allotropes that were molten at lower temperatures. The storms caused by Jestefad made landing on Mustafar extremely difficult as it interfered with navigational equipment.[5]

The planet's native Mustafarian species lived in underground caves created by lava fleas as they ate through the planet's crust, and made their armor from the heat-resistant shells of the creatures. Only venturing up to the surface in order to collect valuable minerals from the lava flows, the short and strong southern Mustafarian subspecies carried out the heavy labor involved, while the tall and slender northern Mustafarian subspecies acted as guards and expert lava flea riders.[15] Due to the planet-wide lava surface, all buildings were held up by gravity supports.[3] Its capital city was Fralideja.[15]

The core of Mustafar housed a Locus of the Dark side of the Force, which Darth Vader used to his advantage when bleeding the Kyber crystal for his lightsaber.[17]

HistoryEdit

Pre-Clone WarsEdit

"Ah I am still on Mustafar. The planet was not always like this. Did you know that?"
―Monin, to Darth Vader[src]

According to the Sith Lord Momin, Mustafar was not always a barren and volcanic world.[18]

Clone WarsEdit

"Go to the Mustafar system. Wipe out Viceroy Gunray and the other Separatist leaders. Once more the Sith will rule the galaxy, and we shall have peace..."
―Darth Sidious to his new apprentice, Darth Vader.[src]

In the era of the Clone Wars, the planet bore witness in a plot to kidnap Force-sensitive children during the Clone Wars by bounty hunter Cad Bane, who deposited the children at a facility there for a Sith plan to create an army of Force spies. However, the children were rescued by Anakin Skywalker and Ahsoka Tano, and the facility was destroyed, along with any evidence of who was behind the plot.[8]

Black Sun fortress Mustafar

The Black Sun fortress

During this period, the Black Sun criminal organization, under Xomit Grunseit, was headquartered on the world. In 20 BBY, Darth Maul, his brother Savage Opress, and Pre Vizsla, the leader of the terrorist organization Death Watch, traveled to the Black Sun fortress with the intention of recruiting them into their criminal empire, the Shadow Collective. Ziton Moj greeted them upon their arrival, and led them to the Black Sun's leaders. After negotiations with the leaders went sour, Savage beheaded all of them with his lightsaber. Moj became the new leader of the Black Sun, and joined with Death Watch, providing them with weapons, troops, and supplies.[7]

At the war's end, Darth Sidious ordered General Grievous to send the Separatist leaders to a mining facility on Mustafar for their protection, but in reality to gather them together so that Skywalker, newly anointed as Darth Vader, Sidious' new apprentice, could kill them all, and deactivate the droid armies, bringing an end to the war.[3]

Age of the EmpireEdit

"You've been ordered to Mustafar. Lord Vader wants to speak with you."
Dunstig Pterro, to Orson Krennic[src]

Shortly after all Separatists were killed, Padmé Amidala traveled to Mustafar in an attempt to convert Darth Vader back to the light. Her plan failed, however, when Vader spotted Obi-Wan Kenobi emerging from the ship. Vader incorrectly assumed that Amidala had brought Kenobi so that he could kill Vader and Force-choked his pregnant wife, gravely injuring her in the process. Soon after, a duel between Vader and Kenobi broke out. Vader lost his remaining limbs and suffered severe burns all over his body. He was later rescued by Sidious and rebuilt at the Grand Medical Facility on Coruscant.[3]

After the end of the Clone Wars, the Galactic Empire took control of Mustafar[16] and maintained secret facilities on the planet where Jedi survivors of Order 66 were interrogated and executed.[11] Rumor had it that Darth Vader carried out these interrogations, torturing the Jedi for any useful information before their execution.[19] Additionally, both Vader and Sidious often returned to the planet, using it as a focus for meditation on the power of the dark side of the Force.[5]

FDKF FC BG art

Vader built his castle on the site of an ancient Sith temple.

A short time after his devastating loss to Kenobi Darth Vader returned to the fiery planet under instructions from his master Darth Sidious. Vader was to bleed a kyber crystal he had obtained from the dead Jedi Master Kirak Infil'a in order to gain a crimson crystal for his new sith lightsaber. He travelled to a cave where the dark side of the Force was strong and poured all of his pain and anger into the crystal making it sing a hymn of darkness. With this new crystal Vader returned to his master, one step closer to becoming a true servant of darkness.[20]

Four years before the Battle of Yavin, an Imperial fleet was stationed above Mustafar commanded by Grand Moff Wilhuff Tarkin aboard his Imperial I-class Star Destroyer the Sovereign. During a mission to rescue Kanan Jarrus, the Sovereign was destroyed during a duel between Jarrus and the Grand Inquisitor when his lightsaber was cut in two by Jarrus and fell into the ship's power core, sending the vessel falling towards the lava fields below.[21]

Around one standard year before the Battle of Yavin, a small Rebel force was sent to infiltrate an Imperial Base located near Vader's Castle on the surface of Mustafar and steal a vital artefact to assist the Rebellion. Upon infiltrating the base the Rebels discovered the artefact was a Proto-saber, a precursor to the lightsaber. Despite the intervention of Darth Vader the rebels were able to escape the atmosphere with information about the ancient weapon.[12]

VaderKrennicMustafar

Vader appears before Krennic.

By 0 BBY, Darth Vader had a castle on the very planet where he had been disfigured. Shortly after an insurgency on the desert moon of Jedha, Vader was in a bacta tank, out of his armor, when his servant Vaneé admitted Director Orson Krennic, who wanted to discuss the workings of the top secret Death Star.[10]

After the Battle of Endor, Wedge Antilles went on a scouting mission to suspected Imperial planets. He reported back to the New Republic when he was on Raydonia before going missing. Due to its close proximity to that planet, Admiral Gial Ackbar sent a scout to Mustafar, as well as to Tatooine, Dermos, and Geonosis, while two scouts were sent to the planet Akiva.[19]

Behind the scenesEdit

Mustafar first appeared in the 2005 film Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith, the final installment of the Star Wars prequel trilogy.[3] It went to apepar in several spin-off media, such as the 2016 Anthology film Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.[22] Earlier drafts of Episode III had the planet's name as "Mufasta", which ironically, happens to be a primary translation for "The Chosen One".

The concept of a lava duel actually dates back to the earliest versions of the 1983 film Star Wars: Episode vI Return of the Jedi, the original trilogy's conclusion. In those versions, Luke Skywalker fights Darth Vader over a lava lake in the Emperor's Throne Room in the lowest levels of Had Abbadon. Even back then, it was rumored that Vader suffered his grievous injuries at the hands of Obi-Wan Kenobi during a battle over a lava pit, and the concept became an almost mythical tale among Star Wars fandom until finally realized on film twenty-two years later.

Joe Johnston envisaged the environment that would ultimately become Mustafar in a series of drawings designed to show Darth Vader's home. On the other hand, Mustafar was initially designed to look like Star Wars creator and director George Lucas's vision of Hell.[23]

To create the planet's lava effects for Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith, a real volcanic eruption was filmed at Mount Etna on the island of Sicily, Italy.[15] It should be noted in the film that, while Darth Vader and Obi-Wan are fighting on the fallen arm, the lava flows backwards (as can be seen by looking at the lava "waterfall").[3]

AppearancesEdit

Non-canon appearancesEdit

SourcesEdit

Notes and referencesEdit