The first two panel discussions with The Clone Wars producer Catherine Winder and supervising director Dave Filoni have finished, and here’s a brief listing of what fans just witnessed:
First, an introduction to Winder and Filoni, with a great video short showing director Filoni wearing his scratch-built Plo Koon costume to the premiere of Episode III (before getting hired on at Lucasfilm).
- When Filoni initially got the call from Winder to direct The Clone Wars, he thought it was a joke staged by his friends. Winder assured him it was not, and proved it by letting him call her back on her Lucasfilm line.
- Filoni got the job moments after his initial interview with Lucas. As a fan, he was just glad to meet Lucas and visit Skywalker Ranch just before the opening of Episode III.
- Lucas is very involved with production – he is mostly focused on the story. He and Winder both work on the scripts with the writers.
- The episodes will be 22 minutes long, so as a result, there is opportunity for a lot of character development. The tone of the series is based on that of Episode IV – in addition to action, there are also light moments and comedy.
- In the new series, there will not be a “Justice League of Jedi” as Filoni puts it – the Jedi can’t do anything more than Luke, Mace, Qui-Gon, and Obi-Wan from the films. They can be vulnerable but are intelligent – they need to think themselves out of situations. It will show how war was a challenge for the Jedi to fight, and how the moral principles they clung to began to disintegrate.
- According to Winder, it’s not being directed as an animated series, but more like live action in terms of its story and cinematography.
(Photo by Scott Ruether)
Filoni then walks the audience through a series of slides which showcase some of the sculpture designs for characters such as the clone trooper, Anakin, Obi-Wan, Count Dooku, and General Grievous. They will share some of the stylization from the 2-D animated series but also some of the reality from the filmed saga. Filoni describes the style as “leaner and more elegant.”
A video is shown which introduces much of the team at Lucasfilm Animation housed at Skywalker Ranch.
Q&A questions revealed:
- Lucasfilm Animation had nothing to do with some 3-D animated stills recently “leaked” on the internet. They were fan-produced.
- While continuity is being taken very seriously by the creators of the series, Lucas retains the right to make slight adjustments for the sake of the story. Filoni is extremely well-versed in Star Wars mythology and Expanded Universe, so rest assured it is in very good hands.
- General Grievous will have a cough. When asked whether any of Grievous’ past will be revealed, the only response is, “You’ll be happy.” Filoni also says that when it comes to big legacy characters like Grievous, Lucas is consulted directly.
- The series will debut in Fall 2008.
- A lot of background characters – from the films and otherwise — will get to do a lot more.
- The series is being produced in high-definition.
The audience was then treated to a preview trailer of The Clone Wars, which is currently available to view by all fans at the new starwars.com! Click here to see the new Clone Wars trailer.
Stay tuned for a more comprehensive rundown of the The Clone Wars panels at Celebration IV!