All spoilers regarding the Skywalker Saga and The Clone Wars are unmarked. Examples relating to Disney's EU and the new movies can be spoiler-tagged if deemed necessary.
Tropes specifically applying to the characters based on their appearances in Star Wars Legends can be found here.
The Trade Federation was an interstellar shipping and trade conglomerate led by the Neimoidians during the waning years of the Galactic Republic, one so powerful that it had its own representatives in the Galactic Senate. Under the orders of Darth Sidious, the Trade Federation invaded Naboo to spark a government crisis that resulted in Sidious getting elected into office as Supreme Chancellor. It later became one of the leading Separatist powers during the Clone Wars. At the conclusion of the war, the remaining Trade Federation leaders were killed and the remnants of the organization were nationalized by the Empire, with much of its wealth ending up in the hands of Imperial financers like Arsin Crassus.
- AcCENT upon the Wrong SylLABle: The Neimoidians speak with very thick accents, meaning that this pops quite frequently, especially in The Phantom Menace:Nute Gunray: As you KNOW, our blockAHDE is perFECTly LEgal, and we'd be HAppy to reCIEVE the amBAsaDORS.
- Armchair Military: In general, the Neimoidians make terrible military leaders, which is why they delegate such roles to specialized droids and professional officers.
- Dirty Cowards: Qui-Gon notes that "these Federation types are cowards". Case in point, they are fully willing to launch an invasion on a peaceful planet, but try to scurry away when they discover that the Jedi are in their way.
- The Federation: In Name Only; it's more of a Mega-Corp.
- French Jerk: In the German version, the Neimoidians have French accents instead of Asian ones, adding to their smugness.
- Greed: The primary motivation for the Trade Federation, as the Opening Scroll of The Phantom Menace narrates.
- Lack of Empathy: They don't seem to care that their invasion would result in the suffering and deaths of billions, just so long as they get their commerce.
- Lizard Folk: The Neimoidian race's greenish skin, horizontal pupils, noseless faces give off something of this effect.
- Mega-Corp: The Federation is so powerful and influential, it actually has representatives on the Galactic Senate as if it were its own planet.
- Nice Hat: The Neimoidians have a penchant for wearing these.
- Not What I Signed on For: Everything they do is to satisfy their own greed without the Republic bossing them around. They soon realize how far over their heads they're in once the Jedi and Sith get involved.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: The Trade Federation was able to get away with the invasion of Naboo for as long as it did because not only was the organization incredibly wealthy on a galactic scale, they were bribing senators to legitimize it. It's also how Nute Gunray managed to remain Viceroy after the invasion was shut down.
- Slimeballs: By nature, Neimoidians are cowardly beings interested solely in personal profit, and have slimy-looking, mottled skin to match.
- Space Jews: The Neimoidians were a race of slit-eyed, inscrutable, unscrupulous villain aliens who speak with a vague Asian accent, wear Qing dynasty robes and hats, and threaten the galaxy with their trade routes and mass production technology. Many English-speaking critics saw the race as a collection of Asian stereotypes.
- Standard Sci-Fi Army: The Droid Army would later be seen in full force as part of the Clone Wars, but we do get a nice look at its early stages. As they would later on, the Trade Federation fights with a heavily mechanized force, using tanks, heavy troop carriers, and starfighters to quickly occupy Naboo.
- Standard Sci-Fi Fleet: The Trade Federation fleet consists of repurposed Lucrehulk-class freighters, which is converted into a combination battleship and troop carrier. At least one is designated as the command and control vessel, keeping the droids on the surface in operation.
- Unwitting Pawn: Twice: First in The Phantom Menace, when they are convinced by Darth Sidious to invade Naboo, only for Sidious to use it as an excuse to get himself elected as Chancellor; and again in Attack of the Clones, The Clone Wars, and Revenge of the Sith when they get swept up in leading a war designed solely for Sidious to strengthen his hold on the galaxy.
- War for Fun and Profit: While this wasn't well explained, in Attack of the Clones, they and the other mega corporations were officially neutral parties who sought to profit off the war from both sides. Only later did they throw in with the Separatists, or at least dropped the pretense.
- What the Hell Is That Accent?: The Neimoidians have thick accents of vaguely Asian origin. This is because their actors were asked to imitate Thai actors reading their lines.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Alongside the rest of the Separatists. Once Palpatine consolidates power across the galaxy and forges his Empire, he sends the newly-christened Darth Vader to massacre the separatist leaders (including Nute Gunray) before shutting down their droid army. In the aftermath, the leaderless Trade Federation is nationalized, its wealth and production capabilities absorbed by the Galactic Empire.
Viceroy Nute Gunray
Nute Gunray was a Neimoidian who served as the Viceroy of the Trade Federation and a high-ranking member of the Separatist Confederacy of Independent Systems and chairman of the Separatist Council. Gunray led the Trade Federation through its invasion of the planet Naboo, at the behest of the Sith Lord Darth Sidiouswho was secretly Sheev Palpatine, the Senator of Naboo, and who had engineered the conflict to be elected Supreme Chancellor. When his plans were thwarted by Queen Padmé Amidala, he joins the Separatist Alliance to take his revenge.
- Alas, Poor Villain: When he's cornered by Darth Vader in Revenge of the Sith, an unarmed Gunray whimpers that he thought they would be left in peace and begs for mercy, but Darth Vader kills him anyway.
- Arch-Enemy: Of Padmé during the Clone Wars.
- Aristocrats Are Evil: Played with. "Viceroy" is apparently just the title given to the leader of the Trade Federation. However, said corporation apparently controls whole planets.
- Big Bad Wannabe: He sure likes to think he's calling the shots, but Palpatine lets him know who is really holding power in their whole conspiracy.
- Character Death: He is the last of the Separatist leaders to be killed by Darth Vader on Mustafar in Revenge of the Sith.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: He's willing to enslave planets just to improve commerce.
- Decapitation Presentation: Specifically demands Padmé's severed head be presented to him before he will commit to the Separatists.
- Dirty Coward: He even admitted that he would never put himself at risk, unless he has no other choice.
- Disproportionate Retribution: In Attack of the Clones, he wants Padmé dead for her role in arresting him after the invasion of Naboo because it cost him a fortune to avoid punishment.Nute Gunray: Get on with it! Carry out the sentence, I want to see her suffer!
- Double Standard: When Padmé had her back clawed by a Nexu during her failed execution, he starts giggling at her pain. When she manages to defend herself, he is offended, claiming that she should be shot for what she did.
- Empty Promise: He promised immediate aid for the starving Rodia if Onaconda Farr helped him lure Padmé into a trap and arrest her. After arriving to Rodia, he said that he'll put the matter of the aid up for debate after Padmé's execution, which had not been in the bargain he made with Farr.
- Establishing Character Moment: His first course of action upon learning that the Republic Ambassadors are Jedi? Why, contact his treacherous Sith Lord and tell him about it, of course. This cements him as the Dirty Coward and Unwitting Pawn that sticks for the rest of the Prequel Trilogy.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Its implied when Sidious tells them to prepare their invasion of Naboo; Gunray questions whether doing so would be legal, to which Sidious says he'll make it legal. However, it may also be Pragmatic Villainy due to not wanting the inevitable backlash and sanctions for illegal actions.
- Famous Last Words: "The war is over. Lord Sidious promised us peace! We only want—"
- Greed: His main motivation in aligning with the Sith is the promise of wealth.
- He Knows Too Much: When he was captured by the Republic, Count Dooku sent Ventress to free him, or silence him, before the Jedi could make him talk.
- Hypocrite: His admittance of cowardice comes off as this when you realize he already took an unnecessary risk in the first place just by being a Corrupt Corporate Executive.Nute Gunray: All I know is I never risk my own skin if I don't have to.
[Ahsoka glares at him]
Nute Gunray: What?
- Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Mostly due to being generally bullied around by the real villains. He's not a pleasant person by any means, but all we see is a man out of his depth and fully aware of it.
- It's Personal: How he feels about Padmé after she helps foil his invasion of Naboo. So much so that he refuses to join the Separatists unless they kill Padmé for him. He specifically tells Dooku that he'll only sign the Separatist treaty when he has Padmé's head on his desk.
- Jerkass: Gunray is a slimy, greedy, unpleasant, warmongering little snake and he seldom pretends otherwise.
- Karma Houdini Warranty: At the end of The Phantom Menace, he's arrested and tried four times for the invasion of Naboo, but the fact that he's still Trade Federation Viceroy by Attack of the Clones means he got off scott free. During the Clone Wars, he was captured on Rodia, only to be liberated by Asajj Ventress en route to Coruscant for trial. Karma eventually does catch up to him in Revenge of the Sith.
- Killed Mid-Sentence: He gets cut down by Darth Vader as he pleads for his life.
- Lean and Mean: He's a rather lanky and very nasty character.
- Meaningful Name: The chairman of an armamentistic corporation has a name which reads as "ray-gun" backwards. And his vaguely amphibian appearance might explain the "newt" part.
- Moral Myopia: He wants revenge on Padmé because she had him arrested for the Trade Federation's occupation of Naboo, an illegal, armed occupation that resulted in the suffering and deaths of thousands of innocent people.
- Nice Hat: Neimoidians have a penchant for wearing these.
- Not-So-Harmless Villain: He is a self-admitted coward, with little to no fighting prowess, but he can still knock out someone from behind, as Commander Gree found out. Ahsoka even claimed that he looked harmless enough.
- Opinion Flip-Flop: After Argyus springs him from prison, Gunray remarks "I always had a good feeling about you, captain". After Ventress killed Argyus, Gunray immediately gave her the same compliment (replacing "captain" with "assassin").
- Revenge: He wants Padmé dead, for her role in arresting him after the invasion of Naboo, because it cost him a fortune to get away from punishment.
- Revenge Myopia: Nute Gunray wants revenge against Padmé for stopping him when he, you know, invaded her planet and enslaved her people. Talk about a sense of entitlement. This is especially nonsensical since Padmé is the leader of the opposition to the Republic using armed force against the Separatists, so the Separatist leaders should have a vested interest in keeping her around. Soon-to-be Emperor Palpatine wants the war, as it will thin Jedi numbers and set the Republic in the perfect position to be taken over by him, so removing Padmé's opposition is critical.
- Slimeball: Aside from being a war criminal, he's also a hypocrite and a misogynist.
- Smug Snake: Spineless, greedy, petty, slimy... yeah, he's this trope.
- Starter Villain: He serves as this for the Prequel Trilogy (and thus the theatrical films) as a whole, being a cowardly Corrupt Corporate Executive out to invade a single planet over a trade dispute in contrast to the galaxy-spanning ambitions of the Sith.
- Take That!: His name was derived from Newt Gingrichnote and a reworking of the surname of Ronald Reagannote . In real life, George Lucas does not hold a very high opinion of either of these politicians.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: His fate in Revenge of the Sith. Once Darth Sidious is confident in his victory, he sends his new apprentice to slaughter him along with the rest of the Separatist leaders.
Rune Hako was a cowardly Neimoidian official and Viceroy Gunray's lieutenant.
- Amoral Attorney: He serves as the Viceroy's legal counsel, and the Visual Dictionary describes his headgear as an attorney's cowl.
- Big "NO!": His last words before being killed by Darth Vader in Revenge of the Sith.
- Character Death: He was executed with the rest of the Separatist leadership by Darth Vader.
- Nervous Wreck: While Neimoidians are usually pessimists and prone to great stress by nature, Haako's overly nervous personality is said to be well beyond even his people's standards.
- Number Two: Answers directly to Viceroy Gunray.
- Off-Model: In Attack of the Clones, he looks and sounds different from the preceding and following theatrical films. This is because the Neimoidian seen with Nute Gunray on Geonosis was originally supposed to be Lott Dod, then because he didn't resemble Dod or sound like him, Lucasfilm renamed the character Gilramos Libkath... then for some reason chucked that and said it was Rune Haako, in open defiance of all evidence to the contrary.
- Satellite Character: All of his scenes revolve around his interaction with Gunray.
Lott Dodd was the Trade Federation's representative in the Galactic Senate.
- Ascended Extra: He had one scene in The Phantom Menace, but received an expanded role in The Clone Wars.
- Blatant Lies: Dod's sole job in the Senate is to fervently deny whatever illegal actions the Federation is accused of doing. In The Phantom Menace, it was the blockade and invasion of Naboo. After the Clone Wars began, he repeatedly insists that the Trade Federation is a neutral party despite the fact that Nute Gunray (whom he insists doesn't represent the Federation as a whole, when the title of "Viceroy" is the highest position in the Federation) and parts of the organization are openly supplying the Separatists, something that other senators and representatives opposed to the war (such as Bail Organa, Jar Jar Binks and Riyo Chuchi) aren't afraid to call him out on. Even though that's technically true to an extent and he's milking both sides of the war, most of his actions clearly favor the Separatists. When the Trade Federation ships blockading Pantora in "Sphere of Influence" (which had none of the Separatists' colors and logo on them) were revealed to have Separatist droids on board, he simply used fleet commander Sib Canay as a scapegoat.
- The Chessmaster: Not quite up at Palpatine and Dooku's level, but "Supply Lines" really showed that he can play a really mean game.
- Corrupt Politician: His role is to make sure the Trade Federation remains part of the Republic while it profits from trading with both sides. He bribes other senators into keeping quiet about the Federation's blockade of Naboo.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: At the end of "Supply Lines", Lott confronted Katuunko, Organa, and Jar Jar for Toydaria helping the Republic send aid to Ryloth. Organa simply told him to bring the issue in front of the Senate if he had proof of any treaty violation. The Senate, whose incompetence Dod knows of perfectly well, since he himself took advantage of it numerous times.
- Karma Houdini Warranty: For all his scandal cover-ups, profiting off of both sides and trying to keep the Clone Wars going, Dod didn't suffer any onscreen physical or legal retribution. Star Wars: Poe Dameron confirms that he died at some point late in the Clone Wars, but his cause of death is unknown.
- Nice Hat: As per usual with Neimoidians.
- Playing Both Sides: He repeatedly states that the Trade Federation itself is neutral in the war. As it turns out (quite unsurprisingly), they're milking both the Republic and the Separatists.
- Rules Lawyer: When Queen Amidala tries to address the Senate, Dod exploits a loophole to propose having a committee validate that the invasion of Naboo is actually happening.
- Shout-Out/Take That!: His name is derived from then-US senators Trent Lott and Chris Dodd. The latter is also a former lobbyist, and Lott Dodd is effectively a lobbyist for the Trade Federation in all but name.
- War for Fun and Profit: As far he's concerned, he wants to keep the Clone Wars going so the Trade Federation is still a viable business for both sides.
An OOM-series Battle Droid commander served as the leader of the Trade Federation's droid army on Naboo.
- Character Death: He gets deactivated, though not completely destroyed, when Anakin knocks out the droid control ship.
- Commanding Coolness: He serves as a commander in both rank and class.
- The Dragon: For Nute Gunray in The Phantom Menace, as the commander of the Trade Federation's Droid Army.
- Mook Lieutenant: He leads the Battle Droid army during the occupation and against the Gungans.
- Near-Villain Victory: OOM-9 was able to route and capture the Gungan army, but was unfortunately shut down when Anakin destroyed the droid control ship.
- Tank Goodness: He commands the Droid Army from an AAT (armored assault tank) during the Battle of Naboo.
Daultay Dofine was the captain of the Lucrehulk-class freighter Saak'ak and commander of the Trade Federation blockade over Naboo.
- Alliterative Name: Daultay Dofine.
- The Captain: Commands the Trade Federation flagship, from where he directs the droid army during the invasion of Naboo.
- Character Death: He dies when the Trade Federations' flagship is destroyed during the Battle of Naboo.
- Dirty Coward: Like most Neimoidians in the Trade Federation, although he was able to summon the courage to openly question Darth Sidious' plans.
- This Cannot Be!: As seen in the quote above, this is his reaction when informed the droid control ship's main reactor was damaged and losing power.
- Too Dumb to Live: Given that he's the captain of the Battle Droid army's control station, he needs to take any major problem with the ship seriously. Except he doesn't take that hint when he is told about the ship's reactor having been blown away by Anakin Skywalker, and he dismisses the report out of his "certainty" that nothing could have penetrated the ship's deflector shields, not realizing that Anakin had unintentionally infiltrated the ship when the shields were lowered to allow a lander to depart. Even then, he doesn't take any precautions about the issue and doesn't order an evacuation from the room. He never finds out how serious the issue is until the control room is incinerated and the control computer blows up, leading to his death as well as that of his crew.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: Only appears for several short scenes before dying.
Homeworld: Cato Neimoidia
Sib Canay was a Trade Federation officer who oversaw the blockade of Pantora during the Clone Wars.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive: He is supposed to be a "loyal" Trade Federation official. In actuality, he uses the Republic's laws to advance Separatist interests by "legally" blockading Pantora while ordering kidnappings.
- The Scapegoat: Senator Lott Dod pins all the blame for the blockade of Pantora and the kidnapping of Chairman Papanoida's daughters on Canay, claiming that he was a secret Separatist officer who acted without Trade Federation knowledge.
- Villain of the Week: He appears as the main villain in "Sphere of Influence" and is never seen again after being arrested.