Interview With Dave Filoni Part 3: Talking Star Wars Rebels

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Dave Filoni and series Art Director Kilian Plunkett hard at work on Star Wars Rebels

Dave Filoni talks a bit about his new series Star Wars Rebels in the latest installment of his interview with’s Dan Brooks(@dan_brooks). It strikes me that as you’re working on Star Wars Rebels now, you’re basically telling the first canonical Star Wars stories without input from George Lucas.

Dave Filoni: Oh, that’s very challenging. It’s a legacy thing that a lot of us take very seriously. It’s not just about telling the stories; it’s how the stories get made, it’s the quality of the stories that we’re telling. There’s a certain feeling that Lucasfilm stories have that we need to maintain.

So there’s a lot of responsibility, and yet it’s exciting, too, when you work with new people from the outside. And that’s a very important part of Star Wars, is to have new ideas, and new things come into it, and to be open to new ideas. It’s where that meets that you get the real creativity in Star Wars, and I think it’s meeting well. I’m excited by the people I’m working with now, and I’m excited by the results that we’re getting on Rebels. We’re moving very fast, but we have some really great stuff happening already. It’s different from Clone Wars, and it should be. I know some fans just see Rebels as an extension of Clone Wars, but it’s not. It’s an entirely different thing with a different feeling and a different vibe.

It is a different time, but you know, when Revenge of the Sith ended and I woke up and found myself tasked with moving Star Wars forward in an animated form, I don’t think anybody at Lucasfilm other than George understood what that meant, which was that that was going to be the main vehicle for Star Wars for practically the next decade. There were other things — The Force Unleashed came along, The Old Republic came along, but a gaming experience and any kind of theatrical television experience is different. I don’t mean that they’re not good, it’s just that it’s different. And we were the ones that were working with George constantly to keep his stories going. So, you know, I’ve been in this position before. [Laughs] It’s nothing new. If anything, I understand the daunting task that it is and how fans will react, the most.

Before, when I was fronting [The Clone Wars], I was largely the spokesperson. This’ll be nice to have some flanking support with [executive producers] Simon [Kinberg] and Greg [Weisman]. Right. There were four Beatles to share the spotlight.

Dave Filoni: [Laughs] Yeah. But it’s fun, too. I’d like to think the fans appreciated my availability, my willingness to answer questions, and just discuss, if not debate with them, what they like and don’t like. I really mean it — when they don’t like something, that’s fine. I get it. They can always tell me, too. It’s all part of it. George was well aware of that, and besides teaching me story, he taught me how to navigate the media that comes with Star Wars attention. That’s just another part of my Jedi training.

It’s gonna be an awesome experience, the future of Star Wars, and part of my responsibility is to be here for it. We’ll see what happens.