In about a year, we’re going to see the first fruit of Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm with the new animated series Star Wars: Rebels. Replacing Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Rebels follows the new adventures of the budding Rebel Alliance, as the Galactic Empire starts to expand to the Outer Rim in the time between Episodes III and IV. Everything we’ve seen from the new series looks exciting and fresh, and now the show’s executive producer Greg Weisman has shed some light on the production and overall story.
In a video posted to the official Star Wars YouTube channel, Weisman reveals how Rebels will fit into the Star Wars timeline. em>Rebels will explore “a galaxy far, far away” a few years before the start of the original Star Wars film. This is a time before the Rebel Alliance has grown into what we know and love from the original trilogy. The new animated series will also take a deeper look at the early days of the Galactic Empire after the events of the prequels.
Greg Weisman has a long background in animation. He started out with Disney and was responsible for one of their best animated series in the ’90s, Gargoyles. After that series ended, he moved on to work on Young Justice for Warner Bros. and the Cartoon Network and The Spectacular Spider-Man for Disney XD.
The video also explores Weisman’s background with Star Wars. While Weisman’s favorite film in the saga is The Empire Strikes Back, his favorite moment is from the original, when Leia kisses Luke on the cheek for luck. Weisman also points out how odd the scene is, considering that they’re brother and sister.
Star Wars: Rebels will introduce new characters to the Star Wars universe, including the Inquisitor, a servant of Darth Vader who is tasked with hunting down the few remaining Jedi left in the galaxy after Order 66 wipes out most of their ranks, and with putting an end to the burgeoning rebellion. Rebels will combine Eastern and Western animation styles and will be similar to the works of Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki.
Meanwhile, a recent rumor says that Billy Dee Williams might join the cast of Rebels. Williams would likely reprise his role as the space pirate Lando Calrissian. At the moment, David Oyelowo, Freddie Prinze Jr., Vanessa Marshall, Taylor Gray, and Steven Jay Blum are all expected to lend their voices to Rebels. Dave Filoni (Star Wars: The Clone Wars) will serve as Rebels‘ producer along with Star Wars writer Simon Kinberg (X-Men: Days of Future Past).
Star Wars: Rebels will air sometime in October 2014, first on the Disney Channel and then migrating to Disney XD.