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  • Sheev Palpatine is a fictional character and the main antagonist of the Star Wars franchise, specifically serving as the primary antagonist of Episodes III and VI. He is portrayed in the live action films by Ian McDiarmid. In the original trilogy, the character is depicted as the aged, pale-faced Emperor of the Galactic Empire. In the prequel trilogy, he is portrayed as a charismatic Senator from Naboo, who—through the use of deception and political manipulation—rises to the position of Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic and, finally, to Emperor of the first Galactic Empire. Though outwardly appearing to be a well-intentioned public servant and supporter of democracy prior to becoming Emperor, he is in fact Darth Sidious, the Dark Lord of the Sith—a cult of practitioners of the dark side of the Force previously thought to have been extinct in the galaxy for a millennium. As Sidious, he instigates the Clone Wars, all but destroys the Jedi, and transforms the Republic into the tyrannical Galactic Empire. He also corrupts Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker, who serves at his side as the Sith lord Darth Vader.