13 Things 'Star Wars' Fans Probably Didn't Know About Tatooine

List Rules
Vote up the most surprising things you learned about Tatooine.

Tatooine. The planet that kicks off the Star Wars saga seems so desolate and uninhabitable that you can immediately understand why Luke Skywalker wants nothing to do with it. Although Tatooine is one of the most crucial planets in the history of Star Wars, there's still plenty about its climate, history, and politics that many fans of the series may not be aware of. 

The planet isn't just the home of Luke and Anakin Skywalker - it's also a world with its own native cultures and populations, as well as one with a rich history worth exploring. Located far beyond the borders of the Empire in the Outer Rim, Tatooine may not seem as special as a planet like Coruscant, but that doesn't mean it isn't interesting as heck. In the larger Star Wars mythos, there probably isn't a planet that's more important to the story (even if it's a world filled almost entirely with Anakin's least favorite substance). Take a gander down below and be sure to vote up the most surprising things you learn about Tatooine! 


  • 1
    274 VOTES

    Tusken Raiders Built A Shrine To Darth Vader After Numerous Slaughters

     Tusken Raiders Built A Shrine To Darth Vader After Numerous Slaughters
    Photo: Star Wars: Darth Vader / Marvel

    Darth Vader has a pretty tumultuous relationship with the Tusken Raiders, so much so that the Tusken Raiders began to see him as something akin to a god. In Attack of the Clones, we see Anakin have a moment of pure Vader-ism when he finds that his mother has been slain by the Tusken Raiders. He massacres them by the dozens. 

    Later, when he has completed his transformation into Darth Vader, he again slaughters scores of Tuskens after the Battle of Yavin. One surviving member of the tribe that he slaughtered showed other raiders. Those raiders then built a shrine to Vader, and decided to sacrifice the survivor who had shown them his people's remains. 

    274 votes
  • 2
    176 VOTES

    George Lucas Originally Envisioned Tatooine As A Much Different Planet

    George Lucas Originally Envisioned Tatooine As A Much Different Planet
    Photo: Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith / 20th Century Fox

    Although many have compared Tatooine to other desert worlds from science fiction, Lucas originally envisioned it as a much different environment. Tatooine was initially going to be a jungle planet, and Gary Kurtz even spent time scouting possible shooting locations in the Philippines. Ultimately, though, Lucas decided that spending months in the Phillippines would make him "itchy," so the planet's environment was changed to a desert. 

    The planet also had a different name in initial drafts of the script. The planet isn't actually named in the final version of the first movie, but throughout many of the initial drafts, it was called Utapau. Ultimately, that planet showed up in a different form in Revenge of the Sith. 

    176 votes
  • 3
    157 VOTES

    The Great Drought Enveloped The Planet In The Imperial Era

    The Great Drought Enveloped The Planet In The Imperial Era
    Photo: The Mandalorian / Disney+

    In the early days of the Empire, the Great Drought enveloped the planet and was disastrous for many of the planet's moisture farmers. The drought was the worst in recent memory, and it scorched the planet's surface. The drought was made even more severe because Jabba the Hutt began collecting a water tax through his henchmen. 

    Rumors suggested that Jabba was collecting the water so that he could take long baths because of the extended heat the planet was experiencing, although Obi-Wan disputed those rumors, saying that given Jabba's appearance and smell, he had likely never bathed in his life. 

    157 votes
  • 4
    174 VOTES

    It Rained In Tunisia While They Were Filming 'A New Hope'

    It Rained In Tunisia While They Were Filming 'A New Hope'
    Photo: Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope / 20th Century Fox

    Although Tatooine was meant to be a planet where it basically never rained, the filming of the first Star Wars was interrupted by a prolonged and rare Tunisian rainstorm. The storm led to conflicts between the crew and Lucas after Lucas suggested going with a heavily filtered look.

    Ultimately, the cleaner look of the final film came after studio executives weighed in to overrule Lucas's desire. 

    174 votes
  • 5
    170 VOTES

    The Planet Experienced A Population Boom During A Mining Rush

     The Planet Experienced A Population Boom During A Mining Rush
    Photo: The Mandalorian / Disney +

    Because the climate of Tatooine is so desolate, it's not very densely populated. At one point, though, the planet experienced a mining boom that led to a temporary surge in population. Eventually, though, after the miners who came to Tatooine realized that most of the planet's mineral wealth was found on the surface and that most of those minerals had unwanted metallurgic properties, the mining projects were largely abandoned. 

    The sand crawlers that those miners had brought to the planet were abandoned, and the Jawas eventually began using them for transport. That explains, at least in part, how Tatooine came to be the desolate planet we first see in A New Hope

    170 votes
  • 6
    166 VOTES

    The Planet Celebrates An Annual Holiday Known As Boonta Eve

    The Planet Celebrates An Annual Holiday Known As Boonta Eve
    Photo: Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi / 20th Century Fox

    If you know anything about Tatooine, you likely know that the Hutts rule the planet with an iron fist. Although they haven't been granted any formal political power, their existence as a criminal syndicate has made them more powerful than any other species on the planet. 

    It should come as no surprise, then, that the planet's major holiday is called Boonta Eve, and celebrates Boonta Hestilic Shad'ruu, a Hutt who legend says rose to be a god. Boonta blasters, a famous type of weapon used frequently on Tatooine, were also named after this particular Hutt. 

    166 votes