The woman who penned the first draft of the script for the original Star Wars’ epic sequel was among this year’s inductees for the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame — more than three decades after her death.
Leigh Brackett, “Queen of the Space Opera,” was a prolific “planetary romance” or space fantasy novelist and a contemporary and friend of Robert Heinlein and Ray Bradbury. Brackett, who also wrote crime stories, mysteries and Westerns, drafted a screenplay for The Empire Strikes Back based on Star Wars creator George Lucas’ story and died of cancer shortly afterward.
Her contributions would undergo heavy revision (exactly how much is not really public knowledge), but she still received screenplay credit along with Lawrence Kasdan (who is now co-writing a new generation of Star Wars movies). Lucas went uncredited.
Other inductees included Hayao Miyazaki, Japan’s master cinematic animator (the only living inductee); comic book and adventure novel cover artist Frank Frazetta; groundbreaking filmmaker Stanley Kubrick; and British philosopher and sci-fi author Olaf Stapledon.