Well this one took us by surprise! When Lucasfilm made the decision to cancel THE CLONE WARS and "postpone" STAR WARS DETOURS last March, it appeared that they were "cleaning house", so to speak, in preparation for a fresh start in 2015 with the launch of EPISODE VII. THE CLONE WARS, though popular with younglings and older, die-hard SW fans, still seemed to garner a lot of eye-rolling from fans of the Original Trilogy who abandoned the franchise after the Prequels. DETOURS, on the other hand, just looked shit. There was a feeling that Lucasfilm, under its new leadership, wanted to bury anything that would threaten the credibility of EPISODE VII. In the same Press Release the company also promised a new animated series would be heading our way in the future. Naturally, we all presumed this would launch after the debut of that film. Not so! Lucasfilm have today announced the first details regarding STAR WARS REBELS, a brand new animated show that will chart the rise of the Empire (and the development of the Rebellion) in the two decades between EPISODE III and EPISODE IV, and the first episode will hit just over a year from now. Even more exciting than the choice of time period in which they've chosen to tell these stories (Vadar!), is that the animation style will be based on the original Ralph McQuarrie concept art! Awesome. Read on for the full Press Release and announcement video for all the details. Great news indeed.
Production has begun on Star Wars Rebels, an exciting, all-new animated television series based on one of the greatest entertainment franchises of all time. Scheduled to premiere in fall 2014 as a one-hour special telecast on Disney Channel, it will be followed by a series on Disney XD channels around the world.
Leading the development of the series is a creative team of exceptional talent. Screenwriter/producer Simon Kinberg (X-Men: First Class, Sherlock Holmes, Mr. & Mrs. Smith) is an executive producer on Star Wars Rebels and will write the premiere episode. He is joined by Dave Filoni as executive producer, who served as supervising director of the Emmy nominated Star Wars: The Clone Wars since 2008. Executive producer Greg Weisman brings with him a wealth of animation experience with credits such as Young Justice, The Spectacular Spider-Man and Gargoyles.
Gary Marsh, president and chief creative officer, Disney Channels Worldwide, said, "The entire team at Lucasfilm has provided extraordinary creativity and innovation for over three decades, and we're thrilled to be bringing the expansive and imaginative world of Star Wars to Disney XD's viewers."
"I couldn't be more excited to explore new corners of the Star Wars universe," said Kathleen Kennedy, president, Lucasfilm. "I think Star Wars Rebels will capture the look, feel and fun that both kids and their parents love about Star Wars."
The action-filled series is set between the events of Episode III and IV -- an era spanning almost two decades never-before explored on-screen. Star Wars Rebels takes place in a time where the Empire is securing its grip on the galaxy and hunting down the last of the Jedi Knights as a fledgling rebellion against the Empire is taking shape. Details about the show are a closely guarded secret at this point.
Star Wars Rebels will be produced by Lucasfilm Animation, featuring many of the key talents that made Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Fans attending Star Wars Celebration Europe will be the first to get an exclusive look at the new series. Casting will be announced at a later date. More information about this developing project will be found on StarWars.com and on Facebook at facebook.com/starwarsrebels.
STAR WARS: REBELS premieres Fall 2014, STAR WARS: EPISODE VII in 2015, with the first standalone movie following the year after.
Share your comments below or on Twitter @STARBURST_MAG
Find your local Starburst Magazine stockist HERE, or buy direct from us HERE. Our issues are also available as fully interactive iPad editions, loaded with multimedia, and can be downloaded via Apple HERE.
Click To Buy