Skywalker's lightsaber

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"That lightsaber was Luke's. And his father's before him. And now it calls to you."
―Maz Kanata, to Rey[src]

Skywalker's lightsaber was a Jedi weapon constructed by Anakin Skywalker and passed down to his son, Luke, and later to the scavenger Rey. Kylo Ren, the grandson of Anakin Skywalker, claimed that the lightsaber belonged to him. Obi-Wan Kenobi and Maz Kanata harbored the lightsaber, in turn, before passing it on to Luke and Rey, respectively. However, as Rey initially rejected the offer, Kanata gave the lightsaber to the renegade stormtrooper Finn, who wielded it against the First Order for a time.

With the loss of his first lightsaber on Geonosis, Anakin built a new lightsaber that would serve as his weapon throughout the Clone Wars. After Anakin's fall to the dark side of the Force, the newly-anointed Sith Lord Darth Vader retained the lightsaber during his attack on the Jedi Temple where he used it to kill his former comrades, including Jedi younglings. Vader also used the lightsaber during his mission to Mustafar where he executed the members of the Separatist Council, but then lost the weapon in a duel with his former Master, Obi-Wan Kenobi.

For two decades, Kenobi kept his fallen apprentice's lightsaber before passing it down to Anakin's son, Luke Skywalker, who accepted the family heirloom along with the opportunity to become a Jedi Knight like his father before him. Luke would make use of the lightsaber, both as a Rebel freedom fighter and Jedi trainee, until he lost it during an encounter with his father on Bespin. Approximately thirty years after the end of the Galactic Civil War, Skywalker's lightsaber was found by Rey on Takodana. By then, it had fallen into the possession of Maz Kanata, who kept the weapon hidden in her castle prior to the Battle of Takodana.

Though she initially rejected Skywalker's lightsaber, Rey ultimately used it to defeat an injured Kylo Ren during the assault on Starkiller Base. In the aftermath of the Resistance victory, Rey sought out the last Jedi, Luke Skywalker—who had chosen a life of exile on the planet Ahch-To as a result of his nephew's fall to the dark side and the failure to restore the Jedi Order—and presented him with his father's lightsaber.


"What is it?"
"It's your father's lightsaber. This is the weapon of a Jedi Knight. Not as clumsy or random as a blaster. An elegant weapon, for a more civilized age."
―Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi[src]

Like every lightsaber of the Jedi Order,[4] Anakin Skywalker's melee weapon[7] was powered by a kyber crystal in the core of the hilt.[4] As with his previous lightsaber,[8] the new one emitted a blue[7] plasma[9] blade[7] due to the crystal's connection with its first owner.[4] In addition to the crystal, Skywalker's lightsaber possessed other components such as a power cell at the base of the hilt, an activation matrix, and a mechanism to adjust the length of the blade.[5]


Carried by Anakin Skywalker

Rebuilding a Jedi's weapon


Anakin wielding the lightsaber during the Clone Wars

After losing his first lightsaber on Geonosis[8] and sometime prior to the battle on Christophsis, Anakin Skywalker built himself a new lightsaber.[2]

Dooku's capture

When Count Dooku was forced to crash land on Vanqor, Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi pursued him into a cave. However, Dooku then caused a cave in, which buried Skywalker and separated him from Kenobi. Dooku then took his lightsaber, hiding it alongside his and then arranged for transportation with Hondo Ohnaka and his pirate gang aboard their ship to Florrum. However, Dooku lost both his and Skywalker's lightsaber to the pirates. When Kenobi and Skywalker came to check on their claim, Skywalker tried to take his lightsaber back from Pilf Mukmuk to no avail.[10] Skywalker was then able to retrieve from Mukmuk, free himself and Kenobi and hold Ohnaka hostage until Jar Jar Binks arrived.[11]

Holographic recording of lightsaber training


Anakin's holographic recording using the lightsaber to provide instructions on lightsaber combat

At some point, Anakin used his lightsaber to teach how to sword fight through a holographic recording. This recording was later found in Kanan Jarrus' holocron.[12]

Weapon of a Sith

Skywalker later used this weapon to duel and defeat Dooku, also known as the Sith Lord Darth Tyranus, during the Battle of Coruscant. He later lost the weapon while effecting the rescue of Supreme Chancellor Palpatine and it was retrieved by one of General Grievous's IG-100 MagnaGuards. The weapon was then given by the MagnaGuard to Grievous, who briefly wielded it, but Obi-Wan used a trick of the Force to recover it and returned it to Anakin.[6]

As Vader, he later used the weapon to slaughter many of his fellow Jedi during his Attack on the Jedi Temple. After this, he assassinated the entire leadership of the Separatist Council on his Mission to Mustafar. Vader lost the weapon in his duel with Kenobi.[6]


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Carried by Luke Skywalker

Obtaining the weapon


Luke wielding the lightsaber for the first time

"Your father wanted you to have this when you were old enough, but your uncle wouldn't allow it. He feared you might follow old Obi-Wan on some damn fool idealistic crusade like your father did."
―Obi-Wan Kenobi to Luke Skywalker[src]

Anakin's lightsaber remained in Obi-Wan's possession for nineteen years where he was given an opportunity to give the weapon to Luke, Anakin's son, after rescuing the young Skywalker from a Tusken Raider attack. At his home, Kenobi presented Skywalker with his father's lightsaber stating that his father wanted him to have it when Skywalker was old enough but his uncle Owen Lars wouldn't allow it as he thought Skywalker would follow in his father's footsteps and join Kenobi on some "damn fool idealistic crusade".[1]


Luke practices Form I with the lightsaber

Following the death of his aunt and uncle, Skywalker became Kenobi's apprentice and started to learn the ways of the Jedi. During his voyage to Alderaan, Skywalker began training with the weapon onboard the Millennium Falcon where he used the Jedi form of Form I, to deflect blaster blots from a training remote.[1]

Usage on Cymoon 1

"You hold that weapon like an untrained child. You have no right to it."
―Darth Vader to Luke Skywalker[src]

Following Kenobi's untimely demise at the hands of Darth Vader, Skywalker began to teach himself how to wield his father's weapon. On the moon of Cymoon 1, Skywalker participated in an assault on the moon to infiltrate and destroy the weapons factory Alpha. After the Force guided Skywalker to a cage filled with Imperial slaves, where he was confronted by a guard. Skywalker first attempted to use a Jedi mind trick to ward the guard off, but when that failed, Skywalker ignited his lightsaber and sliced the guard's hand off, allowing Skywalker to break the slaves out of their cage and lead them to the other Rebels.[13]

Lightsaber revelation

Vader recognizes the lightsaber he built when he was a Jedi over twenty years before

When Skywalker found out that Darth Vader had arrived on the moon, Skywalker searched for him in the facility, as he still believed that Vader was the man who killed his father. As Skywalker approached the Dark Lord, he had his lightsaber drawn and activated as he came face to face with his father's so-called killer (and Obi-Wan's).[13]

Vader mocked Luke for his lack of training in lightsaber combat, and he easily pulled the lightsaber out of Luke's grasp through the Force. However, before Vader could strike the unarmed Luke down, he suddenly recognized Luke's lightsaber as his own former weapon. Luke managed to escape from Vader soon after, and later retrieved his lightsaber as well. However, this encounter left Vader eager to learn more about Luke's identity and heritage.[14]

Usage on Tatooine

When Skywalker returned to Tatooine to learn more about the ways of the Jedi, Skywalker used his lightsaber to defend himself against Tusken Raiders that were raiding Kenobi's home.[15] He also used it against the Bounty hunter Boba Fett, who was sent by Vader to learn more about Skywalker. Though Luke managed to escape from Fett, the bounty hunter was still able to inform Vader of Luke's name, which all but confirmed Vader's suspicions.[16]

Usage on Nar Shardaa


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Usage on Vrogas Vas


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Usage on Hoth

When Skywalker was captured by a wampa, a creature native to the ice planet of Hoth, he found himself hanging upside down from the ceiling of a cave that the wampa resided in. Seeing his lightsaber on the ground, he used the Force to call the weapon to him, cutting himself free and slicing off one of the wampa's arm allowing him to escape.[17]

When Han Solo found Skywalker nearly frozen to death, he used the lightsaber to cut open his dead tauntaun and keep Skywalker warm while he put up shelter.[17]

During the Battle of Hoth, Skywalker used the combined ability of a grappling device and his lightsaber to cut open a hatch on the bottom of an Imperial AT-AT walker prior to throwing in an explosive to destroy the enemy vehicle.[17]

Usage on Dagobah


Luke uses the lightsaber to duel a vision of Vader on Dagobah

During his training with Jedi Master Yoda on the planet Dagobah, Skywalker entered a cave that was strong with the dark side as a test given by Yoda. In the hollow, Skywalker had a vision in which he faced Darth Vader, the Dark Lord of the Sith. As Skywalker used his lightsaber to strike down Vader with a high lightsaber blow, the illusory Sith Lord's helmeted head rolled on the floor, and the face shield cracked open to reveal the young Jedi's own countenance behind the mask.[17]

Duel against Darth Vader


Luke uses the lightsaber to duel the real Vader on Cloud City

Following his duel in the dark side cave, Skywalker received a Force vision of his friends being in danger on the Cloud City on Bespin. There, he faced Darth Vader in a lightsaber duel, where Skywalker demonstrated his new found skills with the weapon, that impressed even the former wielder. However, Vader ultimately won the duel when he sliced Skywalker's hand off that was holding his lightsaber and it fell, along with the lightsaber it carried, into the depths of Cloud City.[17] After recovering from his injuries and replacing his severed hand with a synthethic one, Skywalker built himself a new lightsaber to replace the one he lost.[18]


Rey SWI168

Rey wielding the lightsaber

"Where'd you get that?"
"A good question, for another time."
―Han Solo and Maz Kanata[src]

The lightsaber resurfaced some thirty years later on the planet Takodana, in the possession of Maz Kanata. When Rey, Finn, BB-8, and Han Solo visited Maz Kanata's castle, Rey ventured into the castle's basement and found the lightsaber inside Maz's curio box. Upon touching it, she received a series of visions and recoiled in horror, rejecting Kanata's attempt to give her the lightsaber. Finn later took it for safekeeping. Shortly after, the First Order attacked after having been informed of the presence of BB-8. Finn used the lightsaber against FN-2199.[3]

After the attack on Takodana, the Resistance moved to attack Starkiller Base in an attempt to stop the First Order from firing its primary weapon at the Resistance base on D'Qar. Finn used the lightsaber again in a confrontation with Kylo Ren while on Starkiller Base, but was badly wounded in the fight. Upon seeing this, Rey used the Force to grab the lightsaber and overpowered Ren with the help of the Force. Rey and Finn were then rescued by Chewbacca aboard the Millennium Falcon. After discovering the planet where Luke Skywalker was hiding, Rey, accompanied by Chewbacca and R2-D2, ventured to the planet aboard the Millennium Falcon, eventually finding Luke and presenting him with his father's lightsaber.[3]

Behind the scenes


A Graflex flash similar to the one used for the lightsaber in the movies

Anakin Skywalker's lightsaber in Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith was machined to look like Luke Skywalker's lightsaber from Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope and Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back as they are canonically one and the same.

The original hilt carried by Mark Hamill in A New Hope was made from the flash attachment of a Graflex 3 cell flash unit, a flash tube attachment used on forties-era press cameras, with the ridged grips made by gluing portions of hard plastic T-track used for cabinet sliding doors (often mistaken for wiper blades) onto the bare cylinder, and the switch plate fashioned from the LED display of an Exactra 19 or 20 calculator. A D-ring assembly was also added to the bottom.[19] The lightsaber used in The Empire Strikes Back was again based on a Graflex, but the 'T' tracks were instead screwed on and were only 6 instead of 7, the switch plate was replaced with part of a circuit board, the Graflex logo was covered with mylar tape, and part of a Kobold camera flash was used to created the D-ring assembly.[20]

For Star Wars: Episode VII The Force Awakens, genuine Graflex flash units were used to make the lightsaber props. They were based on a hybrid of the A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back versions, as they feature the "glass eye" and "beer tab" top half parts from A New Hope, and circuit boards and 'T' tracks attached via screws bottom half from The Empire Strikes Back. To hide the Graflex logo, a "wrap" was created that covers most of the flash unit's clamp. The clamp appears more golden colored in The Force Awakens.


Non-canon appearances


Notes and references

External Links

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