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Versé, formerly known as Versaat,[4] was a human[3] female who was the niece of Mariek Panaka, a captain in the Royal Naboo Security Forces and the wife of Captain Quarsh Panaka. Versé was recommended by Panaka to join Senator Padmé Amidala's new cohort of Handmaidens. She was a top-notch slicer and used her talents in Amidala's service in more ways than one.[4] In 22 BBY,[2] Versé was killed when the ship she had traveled to Coruscant on was destroyed by the bounty hunter Zam Wesell in an attempt to kill Amidala and prevent her from voting against the Military Creation Act.[3]

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Behind the scenes[]

Versé was portrayed by Avril Wynne in the 2002 film Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones, the second installment of the Star Wars prequel trilogy.[5] As Wynne remained uncredited until 2019 and her face was mostly obscured throughout her sole scene in Attack of the Clones, author E. K. Johnston opted to substitute a new person as inspiration for the character's physical appearance when writing Queen's Shadow. Johnston sought to create a more racially diverse cast in Queen's Shadow than found in the films and based Versé's appearance on a tour guide she had at Rotorua, New Zealand. Johnston envisioned the character as stockier in build than her fellow Naboo Royal Handmaidens and portrayed by an actress of Māori descent, much like Queen Apailana's actress, Keisha Castle-Hughes.[6]

Johnston also toyed with the possibility of making Versé a transgender woman in Queen's Shadow, but decided against including it openly in the novel because at the time of writing it she did not feel she could do it justice.[7]



Notes and references[]

  1. StarWars.com Encyclopedia Naboo royal handmaidens in the Encyclopedia (content now obsolete; backup link)
  2. 2.0 2.1 Star Wars: Galactic Atlas
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 Queen's Shadow
  5. StarWars.com A Guide to the Royal Handmaidens of Naboo on StarWars.com (backup link)
  6. Tumblr.png Words Words Words — The Queen's Shadow Character Reference Guide on Tumblr: "The only handmaiden I had a bit of wiggle room with was Versé. Her actress is uncredited and we only see her very briefly on the ramp before the explosion. Even the RHS struggled to get a good view of her face, and trust me when I tell you that they are very good at that sort of thing. For this reason, I decided to sub in a new person, and based her on the tour guide I had at Rotorua, NZ. Versé is stockier than the others (because she never has to double for Padmé), and she's not white. I hesitate to say she's Maori, because SPACE, but she'd definitely be played by a Maori actress if the book was made into a movie." (screenshot)
  7. TwitterLogo.svg E. K. Johnston (@ek_johnston) on Twitter: "I'm going to be really honest with you: I chickened out of making Versé openly trans bc I wasn't good enough to do her justice. It means nothing, but I am a better writer now, and next time I'll suck less. But yeah, Padmé would be down." (backup link)

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