Dave Filoni taking a more hands-off approach with Resistance

Dave Filoni is a busy man currently.

Star Wars: Rebels wrapped up this spring, and Filoni has wasted no time moving on to other projects.  A brand new animated show, Star Wars: Resistance, will premiere this fall, and a seventh season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars will be coming next year as the show is revived.

In a recent interview with IGN, Filoni discussed the ending of Rebels but also took the time to explain that he’s taking a more hands-off approach with Resistance, and that he’s currently working on getting back into The Clone Wars mindset.

Perhaps the most significant and interesting tidbit that Filoni shared, however, was related to Resistance, as he explained that he’s more hands-off with this show as compared to The Clone Wars and Rebels.  After explaining that he tries to keep up with all of the storytelling and storytellers at Lucasfilm through the story group, Filoni mentioned his current approach with Resistance:

So right now, Resistance is a bit different, in that I’m not on that day-to-day. I created and set it in motion, but I’ve given that to other people to raise up, people that I’ve worked with a long time, who I think deserve the opportunity to tell stories and I think it’s exciting, and I give them my thoughts and notes – I was just doing that this morning, like George would give me. So that’s fun.

In other words, the learner has become the master.

It sounds like Filoni’s role on Resistance is very much like George Lucas’ role on The Clone Wars, as Filoni himself made that comparison.  Filoni handled the details on that show, but it was Lucas who provided the creative oversight and overall story direction.  But Lucas tasked Filoni and others with carrying out that vision with the show, not being as involved with the day-to-day details of it.

It seems that this will be the first time that Filoni has really taken such an approach, though it shouldn’t be surprising given the trend.  He obviously oversaw The Clone Wars and worked closely with George Lucas on it, and then he oversaw Rebels and had a major presence in the show.  But by the time Rebels ended, Filoni had been promoted to oversee all of Lucasfilm animation, and that has led to brilliant results.  Not only did Rebels finish absolutely terrifically (thanks in large part to Filoni’s incredible storytelling), but Lucasfilm also completed two seasons of Forces of Destiny, is launching Resistance this fall, and is reviving The Clone Wars for Disney’s streaming service.  Leading the charge for all of it is Dave Filoni.

It will be interesting to see how this impacts Resistance.  I am sure that whoever will be running the show day-to-day is more than capable, as they will have trained under Filoni, but at the same time I am firmly convinced that Filoni is the best Star Wars storyteller currently with Lucasfilm and the one who ‘gets’ Star Wars better than anyone.  So I’m glad that he’s still providing oversight storywise, and he has passed on what he has learned to others.

With so much going on for Filoni currently, this is probably the best solution for him and for Lucasfilm, as he is providing oversight for Resistance but not with it day-to-day in the details.  He has to work on that show, yes, but also The Clone Wars.  And he mentioned to IGN that part of that involves him getting back into the mindset of that show:

And then obviously with Clone Wars I’m very in the weeds on that and will have to be, because I myself have had to go back and watch a whole bunch of stuff that I had done, and I went back and watched Revenge of the Sith and Attack of the Clones in depth again. I’m like, “I have to upload this whole timeline.” Just the intricacy of how the clones got made and where Dooku was and all of those things were stuff that I was just doing from memory at the time, because I was in it. Then I switched time periods and went on and did Star Wars Rebels, so to go back into Clone Wars, I have to remember, “Wait – where was everybody? How did that work?” And I had charts and figured all this stuff out, but I’ve uploaded the chip now, so I’m good.

It was pretty interesting, but I had some fun conversations with people and I went “Where’d that come from?” And they’re like “Well, you did that!” and I’m like “Oh really, I did? Wow, okay.” Star Wars is so rich in detail that you’ve got to keep refreshing to remember it all. But I’ll tell you, I’ve met kids that know it way better than I do, and they will hold you to task on the smallest thing. I always say, you show me a ten-year-old, I’ll tell you a kid that knows more about Star Wars than I do. They will ask me a question that I do not know. So we’ll see: I hope I get it right for them all. Of course, they’re all now 15, 16, those kids, so…

From the sound of that, it seems like Filoni will be much more involved in The Clone Wars than with Resistance, which actually makes a lot of sense.  Resistance is a brand new show, so while Filoni has ideas and stories and is providing oversight, it’s not quite the same thing as doing one more season of the show that Filoni spent six seasons overseeing.  This likely is much more personal and meaningful to Filoni.  At the same time, though, it also involves more work than one might think, as it involves Filoni having to get back into the mindset of The Clone Wars after several years of focusing on Rebels and other time periods.

But considering the foundation that has already been laid for the show and given Filoni’s expertise and knowledge, there’s plenty of reason to think that the show will return in all its glory.  Though as Filoni told IGN, he’s determined not just to bring it back, but to be even better than it was before.

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