- "Await the dawn."
- ―Lady Qi'ra
Crimson Dawn was a criminal organization led by the former Sith Lord Maul, who employed the gangster Dryden Vos as the public face of the syndicate during the reign of the Galactic Empire. Crimson Dawn was based aboard Vos' yacht First Light. During its existence, Crimson Dawn quickly cemented a reputation for being ruthless. Qi'ra publicly served as Vos' top lieutenant, but later directly worked with Maul after killing Vos.
- "There's a story about a band of mercenaries who came to a peaceful planet. They had a resource that these men coveted, so they took it. They kept coming back, taking more, till finally, the people resisted. When the ravagers returned and demanded their tribute, the people shouted back with one voice. No more. So they cut out the tongue of every man, woman, and child. That was many years ago. Do you know what that pack of animals became?"
- ―Enfys Nest
Before reorganizing into a larger criminal enterprise, the forerunners of Crimson Dawn were a band of ruthless mercenaries who traveled from planet to planet, seizing the resources they coveted or needed while brutalizing the natives into complying. One such world was the desert planet Savareen, which possessed a resource that they desired. After several raids on their world, the Savarians rose up against them, refusing to comply anymore. As punishment for their defiance, the mercenaries cut out the tongues of every single man, woman, and child they could find. The story was told by Enfys Nest to Tobias Beckett and Han Solo before they went to Dryden Vos.
Member of the Collective and Imperial Era
- "Make sure there are no more delays. And if there are, I am certain Crimson Dawn would love the opportunity to take control of your operation."
- ―Maul, to Marg Krim
In 19 BBY, Crimson Dawn became a member of the Shadow Collective, a vast criminal organization under the control of the rogue Sith Lord Maul. At the time of the Siege of Mandalore, Crimson Dawn was led directly by Dryden Vos. Just prior to the enactment of Order 66, Maul ordered Vos, as well as the other leaders in the Shadow Collective, to go into hiding, in anticipation for the chaos following the rise of the Empire.
Maul eventually took a more direct role in Crimson Dawn's activities. Much like his previous rule over Mandalore, Maul elected to rule from the shadows rather than establish himself as the visible leader of his syndicate. However, unlike the Shadow Collective, most of the rank-and-file of the organization did not report to him directly and few even knew his identity. Instead, Maul relied on a figurehead to serve as the executor of his will to his men. By 10 BBY, Dryden Vos still served as the public leader of the organization until his death. From there, Qi'ra, Vos' second-in-command, would take up the position formerly filled by Vos after she was promoted by Maul. The Galactic Empire often clashed with Crimson Dawn in security enforcement missions.
- "Crimson Dawn used to be run by a very bad man--a guy named Dryden. He worked with some of the worst of the worst, and I always figured he had someone else even worse above him. They lied, cheated, killed... You never knew where you stood with them, except that it was probably worse off than you were before."
- ―Lando Calrissian
Even after Maul's death during the mission to Tatooine, the mark left by Crimson Dawn on the galaxy could still be felt. In the years following the formation of the Galactic Senate of the New Republic in 4 ABY criminal organizations that evolved from Crimson Dawn held substantial power. Although the New Republic Senate formed the Sector Rangers to combat such criminal groups, it was a mere fraction of the size of the Galactic Empire, under which Crimson Dawn thrived as one of the deadliest and most powerful syndicates around. Though still active in the decades following the fall of the Empire, Crimson Dawn itself no longer held the influence it once did and was viewed as a relic of the past by contemporary underworld denizens such as Kanjiklubber Razoo Qin-Fee and the Master Codebreaker.
Behind the scenes
Solo: A Star Wars Story script writer Jon Kasdan stated that the name "Crimson Dawn" for the organization was conceived as a subtle way to hint Maul's appearance in the film, in addition to the artifacts from Dryden's study and Qi'ra's use of Teräs Käsi.
Notes and references
- Solo: A Star Wars Story
- War of the Bounty Hunters 1
- Solo: A Star Wars Story The Official Guide
- Last Shot
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Together Again"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Character Encyclopedia - Join the Battle! dates Crimson Dawn joining the Shadow Collective to nineteen years before the events of Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope. As Star Wars: Galactic Atlas states that A New Hope begins in 0 BBY, Crimson Dawn must have joined the Shadow Collective in 19 BBY.
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Phantom Apprentice"
- Ultimate Star Wars, New Edition
- Alphabet Squadron
- Star Wars Rebels – "Twin Suns"
- Star Wars: On the Front Lines
- Star Wars: Scum and Villainy: Case Files on the Galaxy's Most Notorious
- Solo: A Star Wars Story: A Junior Novel
- Star Wars: Smuggler's Guide