Asajj Ventress /əˈsɑːʒ ˈvɛntrəs/ is a fictional character from the Star Wars series during the Clone Wars, appearing in the Clone Wars micro-series (voiced by Grey DeLisle), and in The Clone Wars film and television series (voiced by Nika Futterman). A powerful Force warrior with exceptional combat abilities, she wields dual curved lightsabers that can attach together and form a double bladed weapon with a curve in the middle.
Asajj Ventress's original concept art.
Before the character of Count Dooku was developed, the Art Department for Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones developed "a Sith villainess" by Dermot Power.
When the Star Wars expanded universe resurrected this female Sith idea as one of Dooku's underlings who could appear more frequently throughout the Clone Wars, this nameless Separatist Commander was dubbed "Juno Eclipse". However, the name was rejected as "not villainous enough", and she was renamed "Asajj Ventress". ("Juno Eclipse" was later recycled for use in Star Wars: The Force Unleashed).
LucasArts's Leland Chee suggested using "Asajj" as the character's first name, naming her after the character Asaji from Akira Kurosawa's Throne of Blood.
Star Wars: Clone Wars (2003)
Asajj Ventress in Star Wars: Clone Wars.
Asajj Ventress appears as a supporting villain in the 2003 micro-series Star Wars: Clone Wars.
When Count Dooku arrives to add the planet Rattatak to his Separatist movement, Ventress defeats every other combatant in a large arena and claims to be a Sith warrior. When Dooku laughs aside the notion that she could be a Sith, Ventress tries to attack him, but Dooku renders her unconscious with Force lightning. After she wakes, Dooku attacks her again, but she jumps backwards and ignites her lightsabers. In her quarters, a short duel takes place to which Dooku cuts her two lightsabers in half, rendering her defenseless. Although Ventress is defeated, Dooku is impressed and recruits her by appealing to her hatred of the Jedi. Darth Sidious personally assigns her to kill Anakin Skywalker, and Dooku presents the Dark Jedi with a new pair of lightsabers with curved hilts. After she leaves, Sidious remarks that she is certain to fail, but that she will serve as a useful test for Anakin.
Ventress then engages the Republic fighter forces in orbit of the planet Muunilinst and lures Anakin into a chase. Ventress and Anakin go to Yavin IV, and a fierce battle from the forest to the Massassi temple takes place. Though she initially gains the upper hand in the ensuing lightsaber duel, Anakin calls upon his immense connection to the Force and brutally overpowers her, causing her to fall over the edge of a cliff.
Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008)
Asajj Ventress appears as an antagonist and later an antihero in the 2008 feature film Star Wars: The Clone Wars and the subsequent TV series.
In the film, Ventress helps Count Dooku in his plot to kidnap Jabba the Hutt's son Rotta. Ventress fights Anakin Skywalker and his apprentice Ahsoka Tano, and later battles Obi-Wan Kenobi. The latter defeats her, and she is forced to flee.
In the first season of the TV series, Ventress travels to the moon of Rugosa as Dooku's emissary to form an alliance between the planet Toydaria and the Separatists. The king is reluctant, but he allows her forces to face Yoda in battle to prove which side is superior. When the king decides to side with the Republic, Dooku gives his assassin permission to kill the king so they may have a better chance with his successor. Yoda thwarts her attempt, however, and she is forced to flee. Dooku orders Ventress to spy on the planetKamino for the Separatist forces, planning an invasion with General Grievous to destroy the clone production facilities while stealing a DNA template of Jango Fett from the production facility. Ventress then frees Trade Federation Viceroy Nute Gunray from the custody of Luminara Unduli and Ahsoka, fighting the two Jedi before ultimately succeeding in her mission.
In the second half of the third season, Ventress' back story is explained: she hails from the planet Dathomir and was sold by the Nightsisters to criminals. She would have likely been killed in a pirate raid if not for Jedi Ky Narec, who had crashed on Rattatak. Narec sensed her potential and trained her in the ways of the Force. However, warlord Osika Kirske kills Narec before Ventress can become a full-fledged Jedi. She develops an implacable hatred of the Jedi Order, which she believes abandoned her master and ignored the bloodshed on her planet. (Ventress is given a similar origin story in the comic book Star Wars: Republic.)
Eventually, Sidious grows to see Ventress as a liability, and orders Dooku to eliminate her. Dooku attempts, unsuccessfully, to kill her, and she engages Anakin and Obi-Wan in one final duel, in which she is wounded. She turns to the Nightsisters of Dathomir for help, and they engineer Savage Opress to serve as Dooku's new apprentice. The scheme fails, however, when Ventress has Opress try to kill Dooku.
In the fourth season, Ventress returns to the Nightsisters. She undergoes the ritual to become a full-fledged Nightsister, but is thwarted when Grievous's droid army slaughter the Nightsisters while their matriarch Mother Talzin is rendered incorporeal. Told by Talzin to find her own path, Ventress later helps Boba Fett's team of bounty hunters in a dangerous but profitable mission. She then finally makes peace with her past with an ideal future as a bounty hunter. While still haunted by Savage, she later tracks to Raydonia to collect his bounty. When she arrives on Savage's spaceship, she confronts her former servant and Darth Maul as they are about to kill Obi-Wan. Ventress teams up with her old nemesis to fight Maul and Opress, but they are ultimately forced to escape in their shuttle.
In the fifth season's finale arc, Ventress returns to go after Ahsoka for the bounty on her head in the lower levels of the planet Coruscant. She ultimately feels a kinship with the young padawan, however, and helps her escape on the condition that she would be pardoned for her crimes. Ventress helps Ahsoka reach her destination, but Dark Jedi Barriss Offee knocks her out and steals her helmet and lightsabers. When Anakin goes after her, believing she had framed Ahsoka, Ventress tells him her side of the story and directs him to the real culprit: Offee.
In the novel Dark Disciple, based on unfinished episodes from what was to be the series' seventh season, Ventress teams up with Jedi Knight Quinlan Vos in order to kill Count Dooku once and for all, and ends up falling in love with him. This novel marks the canonical end of Ventress' storyline; Dooku kills her with Force Lightning on the planet Christophsis. Quinlan returns Ventress' body to Dathomir so that she may rejoin her fallen sisters in spirit.
Star Wars Expanded Universe ("Legends")
As portrayed in the novel The Cestus Deception, Ventress appears on Ord Cestus during the Bio-Droid Crisis. She is behind the X'Ting criminal Trillot's dealings with Obi-Wan. Ventress also destroys the Republic Cruiser carrying Barrister Doolb Snoil returning to the Republic; however, Snoil survives. Ventress later challenges Kenobi and his fellow Jedi Master Kit Fisto to a duel. Ventress disarms Fisto but is then engaged by Kenobi. Their duel leads them into an underwater chamber and Ventress is forced to escape after Kenobi slices her across her abdomen. She lets loose a smoke bomb and flees back to the Confederacy and Dooku.
In the Star Wars: Republic story "The New Face of War", Ventress joins forces with the bounty hunter Durge on the invasion of Naboo's moon, Ohma-D'un. Together they useswamp gas to wipe out the Gungan colony and prepare to launch a biological attack on Naboo. In the ensuing battle with Republic forces, Ventress makes her first public appearance in the war (in the chronological timeline). Ventress kills Jedi Master Glaive in the battle and cuts off his apprentice Zule's left arm. She engages Obi-Wan and the pair are evenly matched. Ventress escapes with Durge after ARC Trooper Alpha destroys their fueling station.
In Star Wars: Jedi - Mace Windu, Dooku sends Ventress to Ruul to help frame Mace Windu. Ventress briefly confronts Sora Bulq, who had been secretly corrupted by Dooku, as a ruse. Ventress kills Mira in the battle and then engages Jedi Masters Sian Jeisel, K' Kruhk and Rhad Tarn all of whom she defeats singlehandedly. After framing Windu for the crime, Ventress corrupts Tarn. While Tarn fights against Jeisel, Ventress defeats K'Kruhk in combat. Windu's timely arrival saves the Jedi; Ventress finds that she is no match for Windu's power and is forced to flee.
In the Republic story "Blast Radius", Ventress and Durge again engage the Jedi taskforce in a facility on the planet Queyta. Ventress briefly fights against Kenobi and Fay. Durge kills Jon Antilles and Knol Ven'Nari. After Ven'nari is killed in an explosion, Durge pushes Antilles into a lava pit. Ventress uses her lightsabers to collapse the ceiling, sending a shower of lava onto Diath's head. Although the Separatists claim a victory, Ventress spares Obi-Wan's life under Dooku's orders, though she impales Fay in the chest with her lightsabers. Fay gives Obi-Wan the last of her strength to escape the facility.
In "The Battle of Jabiim", Ventress captures Obi-Wan and Alpha from Jabiim and transports them to Rattatak for torture and interrogation. Obi-Wan and Alpha escape in the following story, "Hate & Fear", and the Jedi Master takes Ky Narec's lightsaber, making the animosity between him and Ventress deeply personal.
In "Dreadnoughts of Rendili", Ventress and fellow Dark Jedi Tol Skorr fight Obi-Wan and Quinlan Vos on Titavian IV. Obi-Wan unleashes a rancor to distract Ventress, but she manipulates it via the dark side. Obi-Wan fights Ventress after killing the rancor but he escapes with Vos before the duel is settled. Grievous arrives to rescue the two Dark Jedi, shaming Ventress in their master Dooku's eyes.
Ventress then travels to Coruscant to kill Vos and Obi-Wan. During the mission, she discovers Anakin's secret marriage to Senator Padmé Amidala. Enraged, Anakin engages Ventress. During the duel, Ventress scars Skywalker's face but she is once again overpowered and suffers another huge fall. Republic Intelligence assumes that she is dead.
"Obsession" marks the character's final appearance in Republic. Ventress survives her encounter with Anakin on Coruscant but is badly injured. She is sent to Boz Pity where Dooku places her in a bacta tank and fits her with cybernetic modifications. One month later, Obi-Wan infiltrates the facility. Ventress wakes up and subsequently attacks him. She fights against both Obi-Wan and Anakin but is abandoned when Dooku orders an IG-100 MagnaGuard to kill her as she runs towards Dooku's shuttle. Enraged and badly wounded, Ventress tries to kill Obi-Wan as he tries to help her. Anakin slashes her from behind, mortally wounding her. As she lays dying, she tells him the location of the Separatists' next target. Believing Ventress to be dead, Obi-Wan puts her on a ship bound for Coruscant. However, Ventress survives by placing herself in a Sith trance. While on the shuttle, she emerges from her trance and orders the pilots to take her as far away as possible from Dooku, the Jedi, and the war.
Star Wars: Battlefront II
Ventress is a downloadable character in the Xbox version of the video game Star Wars: Battlefront II. In the game, she has two curve-handled lightsabers but they are connected by a fiber-cord. The character selection screen lists the weapon as "Linksabers".
Star Wars Battlefront: Renegade Squadron
Ventress is also a villain in Star Wars Battlefront: Renegade Squadron who can be used if the player is a Separatist and earns enough points to use her. She is available as a character on the Saleucami and Sullust level.
Star Wars: The Clone Wars video games
Ventress appears in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars video game spin-offs:
She is a supporting villain in Star Wars: The Clone Wars - Jedi Alliance where she is seen on Coruscant holding Ziro the Hutt hostage. The Jedi have to defeat her in order to gain more information on the Nightsisters.
She also appears in Star Wars: The Clone Wars - Republic Heroes also as a supporting villain to the game's plot. She is fought in a boss battle with the Jedi characters Luminara Unduli and Aayla Secura.
Ventress appears in the game Star Wars: The Clone Wars - Lightsaber Duels as a playable character.
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed
Ventress has a non-canon appearance in the PlayStation 2, Wii, and PlayStation Portable versions of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed as a costume skin that can be used onStarkiller, the main character of the game. In the Wii version, she is also a playable character in the 2-player fighting game mode called Duel Mode.
Asajj Ventress has been voiced by Grey DeLisle for the 2003 micro-series and Nika Futterman for the 2008 film and subsequent TV series.