While we’re all still mourning the loss of Clone Wars (at least those of us who value fantastic animation over hating the prequel era), its cancellation might be not be a reason to despair too much. A new Star Wars animated series is going to rise from its ashes, one that has the potential to be even better.
Disney announced today the development of Star Wars: Rebels, a new cartoon set in the time period between Episodes III and IV. The show will air on Disney XD and is being made by many of the same people as Clone Wars, plus some interesting additions to the team. Dave Filoni (executive producer), Kilian Plunkett (lead animator) and Joel Aron (CG supervisor) are back from Clone Wars and joined by executive producers Greg Weisman (Gargoyles, Young Justice) and Simon Kinberg (X-Men: First Class, the upcoming Star Wars sequels, and um, XXX: State of the Union).
In a video interview with Dave Filoni (embedded below), it was explained that Rebels would make use use of Ralph McQuarrie’s concept art for Star Wars as a basis for designs on the series. Pablo Hidalgo explained:
You look at Ralph’s design and it’s a few degrees off of where it was in Episode 4 because it’s concept art. When you use it Rebels, it’s going to be a few degrees off from Episode 4 because that’s where we are in the timeline.
I kind of really love this idea, actually. I think it makes perfect sense that the vehicles and costumes would be close to, but quite the same as, the ones we’re familiar with because they’re earlier versions of them.
Oh, and check out this sweet TIE Fighter art Filoni did to get himself in the right mindset.
Filoni says of the sketch, “It’s hard to believe that I have worked at Lucasfilm almost eight years, and this is the first time I have ever gotten to draw a TIE fighter.”
Star Wars: Rebels will debut on Disney XD in the Fall of 2014. Hopefully sometime before then we’ll get to see the end of Clone Wars, somehow.