Something that never occurred to me in all the times of watching SW, until I was recently reading a children’s book version to the kiddo. And now I can’t stop thinking of it.
The start of it all (opening scene of New Hope), Leia’s ship Tantive IV is overtaken by Vader’s star destroyer, which has been chasing it.
The ship was neither coming FROM nor going TO Tattooine. It was headed to Alderaan. And there’s no in-universe indication that any “good guys” influenced where the Empire overtook the ship.
So the fact that Leia could have been captured anywhere in the galaxy — but happened to get captured close enough to what happens to be the neighborhood of Luke and also where her father grew up that the escape pod carrying the information can land there and get the entire franchise going is…incredibly convenient.
I guess this is a long way to get to the point that space dramas require kinda ignoring the fact that space is really, really, really, really big… but driving across the country and getting pulled over next to the house that happens to have your long lost twin brother in it is a bit much.
No; she was trying to bring the plans back to her father on Alderaan, as he was one of the founders of the Rebellion. She loaded the plans into Artoo, and sent him to find Obi-Wan, with the instruction to ask Obi-Wan to finish the mission (bring the plans to Alderaan).
With the additional information provided by Rogue One, we have to consider the possibility that while the original original plan may have been to go to Alderaan, when they realized that their getaway from Scarif (? going from memory) wasn’t going to be clean, they might have said, “Well, Tattooine’s closer, maybe we can make it there before we’re boarded.”
But, I agree, if you’re only going by what’s in Episode IV, it does seem awfully convenient that they’re way out at Tattooine for no apparent reason.
In Rogue One, Bail Organa and Mon Mothma specifically discussed bringing Obi-Wan into the Rebel Alliance, and Bail said of the person he’d send “I trust her with my life.” So that was clearly Leia’s original mission. If the main fleet had been able to escape with the plans, instead of them being slowly handed from person to person onto the Tantive IV, Leia would have been going to Tatooine regardless.
It is true however that the opening crawl of ANH says “Princess Leia races home aboard her starship, custodian of the stolen plans”, so there is some contradiction there.
A more interesting question is why was the only copy of the Death Star plans on the same ship picking up Obi-Wan? Why not put them on a ship going straight to Alderaan, or even better, make a bunch of copies and put them on a lot of ships? The ending of Rogue One explains this pretty well - the Rebel fleet was about to get its collective ass handed to it, the ship that received the plans was currently being boarded by the most terrifying person in the Empire, so the only thing they had time to do was give the plans to Leia.