George Lucas Talks Clone Wars

Exclusive: Plus the live-action show

George Lucas was in Las Vegas this week, not for the loose women and fibreglass recreations of famous landmarks, but to bang the drum for Star Wars: The Clone Wars, the upcoming animated film and TV series.

He showed a five-minute clip of a battle sequence from the film, which exhibited the retro-futuristic look that the new project will be going for and then we had a quick chat with him about what's in store for the film.

Lucas described the film, which takes place between episodes two and three of the series, as "a stylised cartoon, it's not photo's in a Gerry Anderson style, Thunderbirds. The characters have painted surfaces - they look like they've been painted." He also told us that it will feature all the major characters from the films. "It's got everyone," he said. "Yoda, The Emperor... everybody that's in the features is in the animated series. It's just as if we took the feature and just continued it in an animation style."

However, the original cast from the movies won't be lending their vocal talents here. "No, [we won't be using the main cast members]," he explained. "Animation has its own demands, especially as we're also doing a TV series – and this started out as a TV series."

We also asked him about the current state of play on the long-planned live-action show, set to expand the Star Wars universe further. He was evasive on details, but he would say: "The live action show doesn't have any of the characters from the movies. It takes place at the same time, between episodes three and four, but it doesn't have anything to do with the Skywalkers. You kind of hear about the Emperor, and it takes place in that world, but it's like you have the TV show 24 and the TV show The Wire; they're in the same place but they're two completely different things." When we tried to push him on characters, he'd only say: "Well, we're still writing it, so I can't give anything away."

But, we like the fact that he's mentioning 24 and The Wire in the same breath. Clearly, he didn't mean to suggest that this show will be similar in tone to those shows – it was just an example – but we'd definitely watch a show about a lightsaber wielding dude on the edge dishing out cranky justice to terrorists and drug dealers.
Tony Horkins