Shannon Lynn McRandle (born on August 28, 1969 as Shannon Lynn Jones in Killeen, Texas, US) is a professional model, picked by Lucasfilm to represent Mara Jade in the photos taken for the Star Wars card games.

Biography[edit | edit source]

Early life[edit | edit source]

Shannon Lynn Jones was born on August 28, 1969 in Killeen, Texas, US, to Leonard Jones (stationed at Fort Hood, drafted into the army for the Vietnam War) and Barbara Kubiszewski Walsh. She has two younger half-sisters, Hillary and Adrienne, from her step-father (John Meador).

She began modeling at the age of three for department store fashion shows in the Richmond, Virginia area. By age twelve, modeling between D.C. and the Hampton Roads area took up a good deal of her time.

Education and career[edit | edit source]

After high school, she moved to Las Vegas for four years, where she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Studies (1993) from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, with an emphasis on Public Relations and a minor in Sociology. She's worked photo, runway, and character modeling since she was twelve throughout the northeast US and in Las Vegas, NV. She enjoyed a busy and successful career as a make-up artist in the Hampton Roads and Virginia Beach areas. While living in Las Vegas, she worked as a promotional model at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Bally's Mirage, MGM, and in the Roman Festival at Caesar's Palace.

Star Wars[edit | edit source]

"She is a big, bold character. Strong, self efficient, beautiful, smart. Who wouldn't like her. I loved reading about her and was very happy being asked to portray her. She really set the goal for the female characters in the SW Universe! I liked her best when she was Darkside, least when she was getting married… I thought the fussing over the wedding dress in the comic was a little unlike her. She was most fun when she was trying to kick Luke's butt!"
―Shannon McRandle about Mara Jade[src]

She was seven when Star Wars came out and saw it in Norfolk, VA. Her favorite movie is The Empire Strikes Back. When she heard she had an appointment for the casting, she ran out and got a few of the comics and one of the first three novels. She loved Mara right away, especially in the Zahn books. For the last several years she has been the image of the LucasFilm, Ltd. character, Mara Jade, for Star Wars merchandise. At the time the original photos were taken in 1999 she was known as Shannon Baksa, from her first marriage in 1994.

Before 1998, Mara Jade appeared only as an illustration, but after that, illustrations attempt to simulate McRandle's look. According to the short story Sleight of Hand: The Tale of Mara Jade, Mara Jade was present in Jabba's Palace under the guise of Arica while Luke Skywalker was held captive. Before the release of the Star Wars DVDs, there was a rumor that Shannon was to appear in the Special Edition version of Return of the Jedi as a cameo. However, this did not occur.[1]

Shannon has said that a small part in the movies for fun for the fans sounds great. She has stated her displeasure with Legacy of the Force: Sacrifice, where Mara dies. She has stated that her given displeasure to Sacrifice is that if a person was able to kill off Mara Jade, that should have been Timothy Zahn, Mara Jade's creator.[2]

McRandle did not meet Mark Hamill until a fan convention in 2004.

Personal life[edit | edit source]

Shannon was married to United States Navy veteran Jamie McRandle on September 18, 2002. They have two sons, Riley (2003), Logan (2005), and Shannon has a daughter named Willow from a previous marriage. She and her family live in Virginia Beach. Two of her favorite books are The Unbearable Lightness of Being and How to be a Bombshell, and her favorite character is Han Solo.

Notes and references[edit | edit source]

  1. SWInsider.png "Ask Lobot"—Star Wars Insider 66
  2. Mill, Trevor (2015-11-22). INTERVIEW WITH THE REAL MARA JADE, SHANNON MCRANDLE.. Star Wars News Net. Archived from the original on November 8, 2019. Retrieved on January 7, 2018. "No, I don't want them to mess with her anymore. Tim (Zahn) wrote the most amazing character. She was BADASS! Very cool! Very smart! Yey! Then somewhere down the road, someone killed her after torturing her with unbelievable plot lines for a while and gave her the dumbest, most random death, not befitting the character she was or had grown to be. I have always said if she HAD to die, Tim should have been the one to kill her. Let it lie. Please, just let it be! I trust Disney's judgment for now!"

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