The Clone Wars is such a big deal that there were two Season 5 preview panels, one on Saturday and one on Sunday, at Star Wars Celebration VI. I love the show, so I went to both. On Saturday attendees were treated to an amazing surprise. GEORGE LUCAS SHOWED UP! Yes, the creator himself briefly came out and talked some Clone Wars with Supervising Director Dave Filoni and VFX Supervisor Joel Aron.
Both panels showed the same preview clips and concept art for Season 5 but the discussions in between were a bit different. This recap will focus on Sunday’s panel.
The first group of images they showed us focused on the environment of the planet Onderon. This will be a new planet to The Clone Wars although it has already shown up in previous Expanded Universe material. Dave and Joel said that some of the environment was inspired by ancient Rome. The clip they showed depicted a battle between a rebel group on Onderon and the Seperatist droid army. Ahsoka and Lux Bonteri are assisting the rebels. There were also some really cool flying creatures that the rebels rode.
Next Joel Aron talked about designing Anakin’s room that will be seen in Season 5 and showed some accompanying images. He said that some inspiration was taken from Elliot’s room in E.T. The clip they showed was a conversation in Anakin’s room between Anakin and Obi-Wan. Obi-Wan is expressing his concern about Anakin’s anger toward Clovis, a character who had a previous relationship with Padme. Dave implied that Obi-Wan may know more about Anakin’s secret relationship than we might think.
A new character coming to Season 5 will be an alien Republic Colonel who is only about 6 inches tall. He will be part of a droid story arc where a group of droids are sent on an important mission. We were shown a clip where the droids and the colonel are in a shuttle when the shuttle begins to fly through an asteroid field. Dave said the sequence was inspired by the original Star Tours ride. Joel Aron also revealed that R2-D2 will have a brand new animation model in Season 5.
Another character who will be part of the same story arc is a Republic Commando named Gregor. When the concept art came onto the screen the crowd erupted into applause, approving of the return of a Republic Commando to the series. The clip showed Gregor assisting the droids as they are on their mission (you can view the clip now over at IGN). Dave said that Gregor was not initially going to be a Commando but he knew the fans really loved the Commandos and he saw this as an opportunity to bring one in.
Clone Wars will be returning to Mustafar, and we were treated to a clip full of awesome. Darth Maul and Opress seem to have recruited the Death Watch and Pre Vizsla to help their cause. In the clip we see them visiting Mustafar and trying to possibly add another group to their ranks. Black Sun! Black Sun is a criminal organization that was created in the Expanded Universe and now it is being brought into The Clone Wars TV show. And to make it even better it looks like the Black Sun leaders are of the Falleen alien race, another nod to the EU, specifically the popular novel Shadows of the Empire. In reference the Maul being with the Mandalorians Dave said, “Maul and the Mandalorians, who would have thought? …Mauldalorians.”
The last clip they shared with us showed the female Mandalorian character Bo Katan rescuing Obi-Wan Kenobi who appears to have been captured by the Death Watch. The fight choreography in the clip was amazing and it looks like Bo Katan is really going to kick some butt in Season 5. Obi-Wan is also wearing Mandalorian armor in the clip. Finding out how this came about should be a pretty interesting story.
Before the panel was over Dave decided to share the Season 5 trailer they had shown in a couple panels before. I had seen it before when they showed it at the Season 5 premiere screening and it literally blew me away. The fanboy in me was drooling at some of the things that were in the trailer. I won’t explain the whole trailer here but you can watch it in its entirety at EW.com. Just as a teaser, there is a scene in the trailer showing Palpatine/Darth Sidious fighting with two lightsabers against Maul and Opress at the same time. Yeah, you’re going to want to go watch it right now.
The Clone Wars keeps getting better and better every season and if the clips and trailer we saw at Celebration VI are any indication, this coming up season will be the best one yet!