- "Bail Antilles remains the front-runner. Ironically, the crisis at Naboo has drawn the Core Worlds into a tighter circle. Where Antilles has always been in danger of being dismissed as the candidate most likely to follow in Valorum's footsteps, he is suddenly the darling of those advocating for strong, central authority."
- ―Darth Plagueis
Bail Antilles was a Human male from the planet Alderaan. Born a prince in the influential House of Antilles, Antilles served as the senator of the Alderaan sector during the years leading up to the Invasion of Naboo. Campaigning to combat corruption in the Senate, the highest legislative body of the Galactic Republic, Antilles ascended to the position of chairman of the Internal Activities Committee. He was also leader of one of the two main factions of the Senate, the Core faction, which was mostly opposed by the Rim faction led by his colleague Ainlee Teem of the planet Malastare.
In 33 BBY, during the debates on the taxation of trade routes, Antilles argued the Senate should not allow the Trade Federation to increase the number of its battle droid defenses. One year later, Queen Amidala of the planet Naboo moved for a Vote of No Confidence in the leadership of Supreme Chancellor Finis Valorum. Along with his colleagues Palpatine of Naboo and Ainlee Teem, Antilles was nominated to succeed the Chancellor. Despite—or partly because of—his crusade against corruption, Antilles was not chosen, and Palpatine received the anointing of the Senate. Following Palpatine's election at the helm of the state, Antilles retired from office, making way for his compatriot Bail Organa, to whom he was related through marriage. Once he was retired, Antilles still made a few public appearances, notably attending Senator Horox Ryyder's farewell party shortly before the outbreak of the Clone Wars in 22 BBY.
Early life and career
- "There, all but in Valorum's lap, sit Senators Antilles, Horox Ryyder, Tendau Bendon… Any of them, more than worthy of a bow."
- ―Senator Orn Free Taa
A Human male, Bail Antilles was born on Alderaan, a planet that had been an established center point in the culture and politics of the Galactic Republic for thousands of years. The young Antilles, a prince by birth on his homeworld, was a prominent member of the House of Antilles, one of the planet's most influential noble bloodlines. In accordance with Alderaanian law, Antilles reached the age of responsibility at seventeen, becoming a full adult independent of his parents. He joined galactic-wide politics by succeeding his elder colleague Agrippa Aldrete as the Alderaan sector's delegate to the Galactic Senate, the main legislative and executive council of the Republic. He occupied a highly prestigious position, since Alderaan was one of the Core Worlds—a group of prestigious planets located around the center of the galaxy—and its delegation held considerable power in the Senate Rotunda. Apart from his political career, Antilles started a family by marrying a woman, with whom he lived on Coruscant—the capital world of the Republic—during his Senatorial service. On Coruscant, Antilles was known to visit the Coruscant Opera House, like many other politicians of the time. He notably attended a representation of The Brief Reign of Future Wraiths, a Corellian opera performed by a touring Bith company.
Toward the end of Supreme Chancellor Finis Valorum's administration, Antilles was a known supporter of the Chancellor. At that time, the Senate was mostly divided into two factions: the liberal Core faction, led by Antilles and traditionally supporting Valorum, and the conservative Rim faction, opposed to Valorum's measures and led by Senator Orn Free Taa of the planet Ryloth. Both Ainlee Teem and Antilles were considered plausible successors to Valorum by many, including the Chancellor himself. During that time, corruption was a thorn in the flesh of the Senate. Antilles decided to go on a crusade against it, becoming a paragon of integrity. He joined the Internal Activities Committee, a core group whose role was to maintain ethics and legality among the high-ranking officials of the Republic. He was even appointed chairman of the Committee, which also included Horox Ryyder of the world Gravlex Med, Yarua of the planet Kashyyyk and nominally Palpatine of the planet Naboo. Antilles would retain that position for years until his retirement. During the last days of his service, he was assisted by two Senatorial aides: the former Senator Aldrete and Liana Merian, a female diplomat also from Alderaan.
The taxation debates
- "Supreme Chancellor, I'm sorry to have to be the bearer of raw tidings on a day that should be devoted to celebration, but this document constitutes official notification that you are hereby requested to appear before the Supreme Court to answer allegations of corruption and illegal enrichment."
- ―Antilles, to Chancellor Valorum
In 33 BBY, the Trade Federation, a shipping interest that monopolized the trade routes of the Outer Rim Territories, suffered from attacks by the criminal organization known as the Nebula Front in several sectors. Through the voice of its representative in the Senate, Lott Dod, the Federation petitioned for Republic aid. Chancellor Valorum proposed a taxation of the Free Trade Zone, a solution of which the Federation disapproved. Dod suggested that alternatively the Trade Federation could increase its own security assets, thus not needing the protection of the Republic. Dod's idea was supported by Ainlee Teem, but Antilles protested, as it could endanger the stability of the already dangerous Outer Rim. He suggested instead that the Trade Federation simply avoid the dangerous areas. The Alderaanian's intervention, however, was not to the liking of some representatives, whose planets would be excluded from galactic trade because of the measure. As the problem was considered a delicate matter, a summit was arranged on the planet Eriadu to discuss it at a later date.
Soon afterward, Antilles and Ryyder attempted to meet privately with Valorum. That follow-up meeting did not happen, because the Nebula Front attempted to assassinate Valorum in the Senate Plaza. Their plan, however, was thwarted by Jedi Masters Qui-Gon Jinn and Adi Gallia, and the Chancellor was merely wounded. Antilles obtained proof of the Front's involvement in the incident and, along with Senator Com Fordox of the planet Corellia, paid the recovering politician a social visit at the Galactic Senate Medcenter. Later, a recovered Valorum thanked Antilles for his interest by consulting him—along with Ryyder, Palpatine, and a few aides—about a hostage situation. The Republic starship Prominence, which had been transporting a delegation of Jedi Knights on a mission, had been attacked by Nebula Front agents, and the starship's occupants had been captured. Since most of the hostages were Jedi, Antilles and the other politicians agreed to leave the matter in the hands of the Jedi High Council.
While working to resolve a diplomatic crisis between Alderaan and its neighbor planet Delaya, Antilles was approached by the Twi'lek senator Orn Free Taa of the planet Ryloth. As a member of several committees, Taa had discovered that the trade company known as Valorum Shipping and Transport, owned by relatives of Chancellor Valorum and with interests in the trade routes that Valorum wanted to tax, had received an important investment and would profit from the new laws for which Valorum was campaigning—something that suggested corruption. Taa had tried to find the origin of the money, but on account of lacking the proper authorization, he had turned to Antilles due to his chairmanship of the Internal Activities Committee, on Palpatine's advice. Antilles agreed to investigate the situation, discovering what he at first thought was a false-venture consortium. Hidden under it was a fraudulent banking account from Coruscant that had moved an amount of aurodium ingots apparently linked to the Trade Federation. Those facts suggested that the Federation had given Valorum the ingots to seal a secret pact. Antilles reported his discoveries to Taa, who in turn revealed them to Palpatine discreetly.
Once the taxing of trade routes had been approved, Antilles, in his role as Internal Activities chairman, informed Valorum of the charges of corruption filed against him. The Alderaanian also represented the prosecution in the subsequent Supreme Court inquiry that took place in the Galactic Courts of Justice Building. When Antilles presented evidence of embezzlement related to Valorum Shipping and Transport, one of the Chancellor's lawyers objected there was no clear connection between Valorum himself and the enormous sum that was invested in the corporation. Yet Antilles had expected that argument. He pointed out that the quantity of aurodium corresponded exactly to a cache of ingots that the Trade Federation had reported missing after an attack a few months earlier. He went on to note that the money in question might not have truly disappeared, and might have instead been transferred to Valorum Shipping, as a means to seal a concealed partnership between the Federation and the Chancellor. Following those accusations, Valorum's reputation was put on the line, and as his second term of office drew to a close, both Antilles and Teem started campaigning to replace him.
The Invasion of Naboo and the Chancery election
Unbeknownst to the Senate, the Trade Federation had entered into a secret alliance with the Sith Lord Darth Sidious—who was in fact none other than the seemingly unassuming Senator Palpatine. In 32 BBY, Sidious ordered his Federation allies to use their battleships to blockade and besiege Naboo, in protest against the taxation of the Free Trade Zone. Facing the current head of state's impotence to act quickly and interrupt the blockade, Queen Padmé Amidala, the recently elected ruler of Naboo, called for a Vote of No Confidence in Chancellor Valorum's leadership.
The motion was greeted with resounding success, and Valorum was removed from office. As a consequence, Antilles, Teem and Palpatine were nominated to succeed Valorum in the upcoming Chancery election. Since Antilles had gained popularity following the taxation debates, he was considered the top candidate for the chancellorship by both the holomedia and his fellow senators. During the campaign, Antilles organized a political meeting aboard the Perlemian Orbital Facility, a space station orbiting Coruscant. The meeting was attended by several senators and businessbeings, as well as Jedi Master Jorus C'baoth, who had been tasked with settling a dispute among some of Alderaan's noble houses. However, thanks to the groundswell of sympathy for the blockaded planet Naboo, Palpatine won the election. Antilles' fierce fight against corruption had also gained him a reputation of an overzealous reformer, which rendered him undesirable to the many greedy delegates in the Senate, and he resigned from the Senate shortly thereafter. He passed the torch to his compatriot Bail Prestor Organa, who had married Queen Breha, a member of Antilles' family.
A retired senator
- "Among the politicians present at the gathering were Senator Bail Organa and former Senator Bail Antilles of Alderaan."
- ―A HoloNet News headline
Despite having sustained an overwhelming defeat, Antilles held no grudge against Palpatine for being elected. In fact, he assumed that the former Senator of Naboo had been chosen because he projected an image of both rigidness and sincerity, which gained him the sympathy and approval of both Senatorial factions. However, Antilles would somewhat revise his opinion through the years: he later revealed to Bail Organa that, at that time of Palpatine's election, the Senate's main objective had been to remove Valorum from power, more than any actual interest in his successor.
In the third month of the year 22 BBY, Antilles accompanied Bail Organa to Ozlyn Gox, the capital city of Gravlex Med, to attend the retirement ceremony of the Anx representative Horox Ryyder. The celebration was an informal gathering of old friends, but Ryyder had been careful to invite his former political allies, including Antilles. The two Alderaanians presented their retiring colleague with the Royal Chalcedony Shield, a prestigious award that made him an honorary son of Alderaan. Antilles' attendance at the ceremony was recorded in the "News Headlines" segment of CoCo District's edition of the HoloNet News. Two months later, the Clone Wars broke out, with the Republic and the Jedi Order waging war against the Confederacy of Independent Systems. At some point following the Battle of Geonosis, the first engagement of the conflict, Antilles was once again featured on the HoloNet news, along with Sei Taria, the former Staff Aide of Chancellor Valorum, and a red-plated protocol droid.
Personality and traits
- "Senator Antilles thinks only of the Core Worlds. Doubtless he would advocate a policy of nonintervention."
- ―Finis Valorum
Bail Antilles was a tall, fair-skinned man who sported dark hair, a proud nose and blue eyes. His physical features were considered attractive by other members of his species. One of his Senatorial outfits was a white tunic with a high collar, leaf-shaped fabric clasps and an elaborate golden stole flowing down from the shoulders. By wearing pure white uniforms, Antilles followed a tradition of Alderaanian ambassadors.
Although hard-working, dedicated and efficient in no little measure, Antilles was sometimes considered short-sighted. Indeed, as the representative of one of the Core Worlds, he paid little attention to the Outer Rim Territories, at least according to Finis Valorum. When his position on the Internal Activities Committee obligated him to represent the prosecution on Chancellor Valorum's trial, Antilles' body language expressed both anger and disappointment. While he apologized to Valorum for being the bringer of bad news, the Senator had the sense of doing his duty, in compliance with his strong anti-corruption principles.
Despite his excellent reputation, certain members of the Jedi Order were suspicious of Antilles, including Masters Saesee Tiin and Dooku. When Valorum found himself under the gun, Tiin was concerned that he could be replaced by "the likes of Bail Antilles or Ainlee Teem," lumping together both politicians. According to Dooku, Valorum was a "known quantity" to the Jedi, while his potential successors Teem, Palpatine and Antilles had yet to disclose their true—and perhaps dangerous—agendas. Ironically, Dooku would later become a Sith Lord and an apprentice to Darth Sidious, Palpatine's Sith alter ego.
When he broke for lunch after a hard morning's work, the Senator enjoyed drinking Gizer ale and going to the city for a meal. One of his favorite restaurants was located near the Courts Building of Coruscant, in the district known as "the Plains."
As an outspoken critic of bureaucratic corruption, Antilles disliked Senator Orn Free Taa of Ryloth, suspecting that the Twi'lek was guilty of many financial irregularities. However, the Alderaanian always did his best to hide his apprehension when meeting with Taa, listening to the Twi'lek's words and checking the truth about them later. Yet, he could not help addressing Taa with a slight touch of sarcasm.
Behind the scenes
- "Whitsun walks into the glass and chrome splendor of one of the famous nightclubs of Alderaan. He moves to the long mirrored bar, and sits next to a rough-looking man, BAIL ANTILLES, dressed in the distinctive gold and furs of the Galactic traders."
- ―Extract from "The Star Wars: Rough Draft"
The name "Bail Antilles" first appeared in May 1974, in the 132-page rough draft to the film that would become Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope. In that early treatment, Antilles was a galactic trader and a confederate of the Aquillian Ranger Clieg Whitsun. He was described as a rugged-looking man wearing fur and golden ornaments. One year later, in the Adventures of the Starkiller, Episode I: The Star Wars, Antilles became an Aquillian Ranger himself and the co-pilot of the story's main protagonist, Luke Starkiller. That first version of Antilles appears in the comic book series The Star Wars, a non-canon adaptation of George Lucas's 1974 draft for Star Wars.
Later story developments established the character of Bail Antilles as the father of Princess Leia from the planet Ogana Major. When Princess Leia's homeworld was renamed Alderaan, the name "Ogana" was slightly respelled and attributed to the royal family. Bail Antilles was accordingly renamed Bail Organa, and went on to be mentioned by name in both the script and novelization of the original Star Wars film, although he was only referred to simply as Princess Leia's father in the film itself. In Star Wars (1977) 2, the second issue of the film's comic book adaptation by Marvel, Leia's father was erroneously referred to as "Bail Antillies [sic], Viceroy of Alderaan." Eventually, Bail Antilles was established as a separate character from Organa during the development of the Star Wars prequel trilogy, specifically as Organa's predecessor as the senator of Alderaan.
- "Alderaan seconds the motion for a vote of no confidence in Chancellor Valorum."
- ―Adrian Dunbar as "Bail Organa," in a deleted scene from Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace
In 1999, the Irish actor Adrian Dunbar was cast as Bail Organa and was set to appear in the Senate sequence of Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace. In his original scene, Dunbar's Organa seconded Queen Amidala's Vote of No Confidence that toppled Valorum's Chancellorship. However, references to "Bail Organa" in the script were changed to "Bail Antilles" during production, making Dunbar's character a separate politician.
While filming his scenes, Dunbar was asked to perform with an American accent at the last moment. The actor practiced a bit and delivered his lines as requested on the day of filming. After he did it, he heard a voice saying: "That is the worst American accent I've ever heard." When Dunbar peered out through the light to see who was mocking him, he realized it was his old friend Liam Neeson, who played Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn in the film. Ultimately, the footage containing Dunbar was cut from the final film, and Antilles was only briefly mentioned in The Phantom Menace as a nominee to succeed Chancellor Valorum. Dunbar received a telephone call from George Lucas to let him know he would not make it into the film. The Irish actor later expressed his disappointment that his scenes were cut, especially since the only reason he was to take part in The Phantom Menace was because Lucas initially wanted to include him in the next two films.
In May 2001, Star Wars author James Luceno used Adrian Dunbar's likeness in his novel Cloak of Deception to portray Bail Antilles, in keeping with the changes in the movie script. When Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones was released one year later, Jimmy Smits was re-cast as Bail Organa, and Antilles made no further film appearances.
Meanwhile, the character portrayed by Dunbar had been further associated with Bail Antilles in the March 21, 2002, issue of the HoloNet News, an in-universe news website that was launched as a prelude to Attack of the Clones. In "Senator Horox Ryyder Retires," an article from that HoloNet News issue, both Antilles and Organa were mentioned, with a picture of both together. The illustrated rendering of Antilles, drawn by Joe Corroney, was evidently based on the only published picture of Dunbar in costume.
Despite the early retcon during production, some sources had already gone to print identifying the character played by Dunbar as Bail Organa, thus giving rise to a notable case of mistaken identity in Star Wars canon. Leland Chee, the arbiter of the Holocron continuity database at Lucasfilm Ltd., addressed the issue in a blog post in 2006. Since then, the confusion between the two Bails has been repeated at least once. In the book Star Wars Annual 2009, Antilles was listed as one of several senators who were members of the Loyalist Committee around 22 BBY. However, Antilles was not a senator anymore at that time, and it was his successor Organa who was part of the Committee.
Two other characters in the Star Wars Expanded Universe have borne the name "Bail Antilles." One was a Rebel agent who used the name as an alias during a mission to extract the spy Malkor Trel from the starship Executor during the Galactic Civil War—as recounted in the roleplaying game adventure Murder on the Executor. The other was a member of the Galactic Alliance Triumvirate by the time of the Sith–Imperial War, who appeared in the Star Wars: Legacy series of comic book. However, "Antilles" was considered a very common in-universe family name in Star Wars, equivalent to "Jones" or "Smith" in some English-speaking countries, and at least two Alderaanians of the same era bore the first name of "Bail." Therefore, it cannot be taken for granted that those two other individuals were named after the Republic Senator.
- Darth Plagueis
- Darth Plagueis audiobook
- Cloak of Deception (First appearance)
- Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace (Mentioned only) (Appears in deleted scene(s))
- Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds: Clone Campaigns (Appears only in non-storyline event) (Mentioned only)
- Labyrinth of Evil (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: The Annotated Screenplays
- Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace Illustrated Screenplay
- Star Wars Episode I Who's Who: A Pocket Guide to the Characters of The Phantom Menace
- "Unseen Planets of Episode I"—Star Wars Insider 56
- The Official Star Wars Fact File 41 (SUP1–4, Election of a Supreme Chancellor)
- Hero's Guide (Picture only)
- The Making of Star Wars: The Definitive Story Behind the Original Film
- Star Wars Annual 2009
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- (Indirect mention only)
Notes and references
- Star Wars Episode I Who's Who: A Pocket Guide to the Characters of The Phantom Menace
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. II, p. 63 ("House of Antilles")
- Star Wars: The Ultimate Visual Guide
- Darth Plagueis
- The novel Rebel Dawn specifies that the Alderaanian age of responsibility was set at seventeen.
- "Refresher Reading"—Star Wars Insider 90
- Young Jedi Collectible Card Game – Battle of Naboo (YJCCG) (Card: )
- Cloak of Deception
- The New Essential Chronology
- Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace
- Star Wars Chronicles: The Prequels
- Labyrinth of Evil
- The RPG sourcebook Hero's Guide contained a picture of a HoloNet transmission, which featured a portrait of Bail Antilles among other things. The picture also had a clone trooper in Phase I armor, which was first seen at the Battle of Geonosis. According to The New Essential Chronology, that battle occurred in 22 BBY.
- Star Wars: Episode I The Visual Dictionary
- The Courtship of Princess Leia
- Inside the Worlds of Star Wars: Episode I
- The Star Wars 1
- The Making of Star Wars: The Definitive Story Behind the Original Film
- Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
- Star Wars (1977) 2
- Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones
- Star Wars Annual 2009
- Murder on the Executor
- Legacy (2006) 20
- "First Impressions"—Star Wars Tales 15