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TheRaider.net Features Interviews Leland Chee
 
Leland Chee interview
by Moedred - posted on April 19, 2010
 
Leland Chee

In 1997, Leland Chee was hired as a video game tester for LucasArts. His extensive knowledge of Star Wars led him in 2000 to Lucas Licensing where he converted the Star Wars reference binders to a computer database called the Holocron. As Continuity Database Administrator, Chee also built an Indycron to be a source for Indiana Jones licensees, game designers and writers. Most recent Indiana Jones books give thanks to the Keeper of the Indycron.

 

Do you know chronologists from other properties (James Bond, Marvel, Pixar)?

I know of former Lucas employees who have gone onto other established franchises, but none that work directly with chronologies across multiple formats like Star Wars. On more than one occasion, I've been told in private that they wished they had something like the Holocron for their property. I know authors who write books for other franchises - in addition to Lucasfilm franchises - and I've yet to hear of any other property that has an all-inclusive internal reference like the Holocron.

In your Wired interview, you said “we don’t reboot.” It seems everyone else does. Do you think it’s wise?

When George Lucas made the changes to the original trilogy for the Special Edition releases - and again for the DVD releases - it was clear that he intends keep the Star Wars films relevant for new generations of fans by making small changes to the existing body of work rather than completely redoing it. So if George doesn't reboot, why would we?

Is there an American Graffiticron, and does it intersect with the Indycron?

So far, there is only the Holocron and Indycron. I did create a preliminary database for the Lucas Books original junior novel series called 7th Tower, but it merely compiled existing material.

Is there an embryonic Muttcron?

Anything involving Mutt would be part of the Indycron.

Do you classify MacGuffins, including the 3 or 4 Philosopher’s Stones?

In the Indycron, the Philospher's Stone has a single entry, with brief descriptions based on the books in which it appeared. The need to resolve possible discrepancies with its depiction in different books has never come up.

Abner Ravenwood has been sketched like Wilford Brimley and Tom Selleck. What does he look like in your file?

Since early art of Abner has never been considered final, I don't keep any sort of visual for Abner in the Indycron, giving us freedom to explore any look for Abner in future stories.

click to enlargeclick to enlargeclick to enlarge
Abner Ravenwood as depicted in an old Marvel comic, a sketch by Hugh
Fleming
, and in pre-production art for the Emperor's Tomb video game.

Yoda’s origin is off-limits to writers. Are parts of Indy’s story forbidden also, for instance, when Indy met Marion?

Funny that you should mention Marion, because when I search for "Off-Limits" in the Holocron, the only entires that come up are hers and Colin Williams' (Marion's first husband) - specifically the events of her life between Raiders and Crystal Skull.

How often do you steer writers away from forbidden plot elements (aliens in Infernal Machine, time travel in Secret of the Sphinx)?

Robots? Check. Zombies? Check. Interdimensional space travel? Check. I personally have never given any direction to steer clear of any "forbidden" plot elements. That is left to the discretion of the editors.

Are French comic or German novel translations planned?

No current plans to translate these.

Have you ever suggested something which became Indy canon?

No one's ever asked.

Is the 1995 Temple of the Forbidden Eye Super Bowl halftime show canon?

No. According to my notes, the Temple Forbidden Eye attraction is set in 1935, which would make it impossible for Indy to be with Marion at this time.

Are some years completely booked with adventures?

He does quite a lot during the Young Indiana Jones Chronicles and in the years surrounding Temple of Doom and Raiders. The more interesting question to me is the question of why there is a such gaping hole in Indiana Jones stories set during World War II.

Was Rob MacGregor’s unpublished Staff of Kings novelization incongruous with the video game?

I never saw the completed manuscript so I really couldn't say.

Does Indiana Jones have a future at Lucasarts?

I'm not at liberty to discuss what might or might not be in the works with regard to Indy games.

Could the unproduced Young Indy episodes reappear in another medium?

I would think it unlikely.

Would a Young Indy comics omnibus include Old Indy?

I, for one, would not ask them to delete it, regardless of the official stance on Old Indy in continuity.

Does your office contain any unique Indy creations?

No.

Are you involved with the Indy 5 "research phase?"

I wasn't involved with any Indy 4 research, so I find it unlikely I would be involved with any Indy 5 research.

 

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