TCW Season 2 Panel - Filoni Quote

"Filoni on continuity and Expanded Universe: “When we’re developing
story ideas and George comes to me with ideas — he has tons of them —
if there’s something I know crosses over with material that’s been
explored with the Expanded Universe of Star Wars then I will
bring that up and kind of refresh him on what it was. At that point
we’ll make a decision on our storytelling on whether that material is
going to be included or if it will just be touched upon or if we’ll
just kind of go around it or alongside it. So it’s always kind of a
balance of needing to tell the best story possible and trying to pay a
lot of respect to the creative people that work in the Expanded
Universe. Ultimately, though, this is George Lucas’ Star Wars. It’s his films and Star Wars exists best in the medium of visual storytelling, so we try to make that experience the best that we can in everything we do."

This is another statement of the type Filoni's made before, insofar as noting that he's trying to work the EU in all the time.  Here he seems to suggest that Lucas makes some decision on inclusion, though, which is new-ish.

Also, I would like to point out that I think TCW would be better if the girl doing the voice for Ahsoka were actually on screen reading the lines the whole time, 'cause she looks pretty cute in the pictures with the article.   Just sayin'.


More Henry Gilroy, plus Dave Filoni

Pretty sure this is old, but whatever.   Choice Quotes:

Henry: George gave Dave and I a lot of freedom and he didn’t want us to be limited by what the EU had established.


This series at least to George is NOT EU, it is a part of Star Wars
as he sees it. I think if anything there was a period where Henry and I
had to learn exactly what it took to be a part of George Lucas’ Star
Wars, and tell the Star Wars story his way. We had to learn how to look
at the Galaxy from his point of view and let go of some of what we
considered canon after we found out the ideas were only EU. Really we
had to “unlearn what we had learned” and go back to the movies as the
defining source material.


Even now, I look at the stories I’m working on and add elements to
connect them to aspects of the EU to tie it all together when it makes


I once pitched George the idea that Plo had a parachute and that he
bailed out of his fighter before it crashed. Then George said he would
only continue the scene and make Plo’s death more painful, I think his
parachute was going to catch fire and he falls on something sharp.

Gilroy and Filoni:

Henry: When I started writing the show bible, George said, “Stay
away from Han, Chewie, Boba Fett and Jabba.” Well... George changed his
mind about Jabba at the very next meeting. George also said, “And don’t
go to any of the planets I went to in the films.” Then eight months
later he changed his mind, “Let’s go to ‘DELETED’. What if there’s a
secret Separatist base on ‘DELETED’?” So let’s just say we’ll see some
familiar Star Wars places besides Tatooine. Lots more cool new planets
though. George gave us a tremendous amount of freedom on the show.

Dave: George is always good at listening to ideas. He does pitch us
every story now and gives us rather detailed outlines. In first season,
it was a little different, but now a lot of the time George will come
in and say, “I want to do a story about ‘X’.” Now the part you are all
interested in — if what he pitches includes areas that are covered in
the EU — this is my only real chance to get the EU material in on the
ground floor of the story, right at the beginning, when George presents
his idea. I will bring up ideas that are similar in the EU, or talk
about how that particular group of characters already has a backstory.
Sometimes I would print out whole Wookiepedia entries and show it to
him, but now I use the big official encyclopedia set. In the end it is
up to George whether it counts or not and that’s his right as the
creator of the Star Wars Universe.

More here.

ForceCast Notes 08-14-09

Let me preface this by saying . . . I hate podcasts.  They have no place in my existence, and of course there's no simple CTRL-F to find the actual interesting stuff.

That said, the ForceCast has been getting interesting.  Crap.

Notes regarding the 08-14-09 episode.

54:00 - Karen Traviss talk begins.
60:00 - Exasperation over EU Completists who stand against Lucas.  Great stuff.
* Need to get full quote from Heir to the Empire flap for completeness, though it is overridden
66:00 - Noting quite correctly that the gauntlet has been thrown down.
68:00 - Henry Gilroy sends a solicited e-mail to ForceCast on the Traviss topic.
73:00 - The e-mail is finally read.

Below is my transcription of the reading of the e-mail to ForceCast.  Paragraphs and some punctuations are guesses on my part, but this is the statement as heard:

"Karen's books thrilled and entertained many fans and she is to be thanked for her hard work.  I think she's brought a lot of fans to Star Wars with her modern journalistic military style and I'm certain she'll be missed, although I have a feeling she'll be back.

It is unfortunate that she's moving on because [of] her opinion that canon is being changed. I guess the big problem is the assumption that her work is canon in the first place.  After working with George on The Clone Wars series I know there are elements of her work that are not in line with his vision of Star Wars, and in my mind only George Lucas’ Star Wars is canon. Everything else is Expanded Universe.  In my opinion, George's work on Star Wars, whether he created it before or after other writers, trumps all because he created Star Wars in the first place, period.  Karen admits as much in her blog.  If Karen’s own creative properties were to take off I have a feeling she would feel the same way about other people writing in her universe. She would want to be the last word.  

I put Karen's book[s] in perspective with the rest of the EU work, along with even my own Star Wars comics.  That doesn't make Karen's books any less exciting or enjoyable, because I believe that there's room for every great writer to tell Star Wars stories. 

The mythology has been around long enough that at some point it comes to belong to everyone.  That's the magic of storytelling.  I think of Star Wars as a great big mythology where writers can tell stories of all shapes and sizes.  I honestly hope writers will be writing Anakin Skywalker Clone Wars-era stories thirty years from now, and people will be reading these stories because they love the world and the characters.  They're not caught up in the timeline so much that it destroys their enjoyment of the story.  

To quote Randy Stradley [editor at Dark Horse] who said it best about continuity, "The more you define, the more you confine.""

(Hat tip to this person)


George Lucas on Matters of Production

Once upon a time, someone was in a fit of desperation to ignore the Lucas position regarding what is or isn't canon and part of his universe.   In the process of seeking something to say to counter the obvious, they hit upon the idea of declaring that  Lucas really wasn't saying what we thought he was saying.

(e.g. the EU being "outside of my little universe" and "different universe" and a "parallel universe" and one of "two universes: my universe and then this other one" and as different "versions of Star Wars" that "don't always mesh" and with the two versions being "completely different and didn't have anything to do with each other", unlike as occurs with "the movies and TV shows are all under my control and they are consistent within themselves", and so on and so forth ad nauseum . . . )

They say that was actually a supershadowsecret code on the part of Lucas, and that Lucas was actually merely talking about production issues . . . e.g. "them's books, ain't no film in it.  I don't mess with no paper, but them stories is as real-uh Star Wars as my movies."

That, of course, is completely absurd.   By trying to divorce his context from content, these semantic desperadoes would  render his words completely meaningless.  He's said the obvious in several different ways but still, they whine and try to obfuscate.  They often cloak the argument into as obtuse and obscure a position as possible to avoid entangling engagements, often using mere guerilla tactics to continue to try to resist the dual canons of the Lucas universe and the EU's universe.

Of course, as we all know, dual-canons is the only way to go.  Boba Fett's movie death (as described by Lucas) and continuing existence in the EU is not merely a distinction of typesetting or production issues relating to ink coloration . . . it is a question of the content of the universe.    The collapse of the Empire at the end of Return of the Jedi does not correspond to the EU's continued existence of the Empire alongside the Alliance, an existence that culminates in the complete restoration of Imperial authority a century later under Imperial and then Sith rule, even featuring a Sith Temple built upon the ruins of the old Jedi Temple.   The extensive Mandalorian obsession on the part of the EU is being rewritten by The Clone Wars TV show (to the point that the primary EU author regarding Mandalorian stuff has quit in disgust).

 . . . and so on.

The above having been said, I have actually found a quote that is about production issues, though it could be construed as not being so were there someone unscrupulous on my side.   I share it not to misconstrue it, but instead as a demonstration of what the semantic desperadoes would need to show to actually be able to prove their ridiculous claims.

So, let's say I was unscrupulous, and quoted thus:

GEORGE LUCAS: Even though we’re a weekly series, I don’t treat this like TV. I treat it like my movies.

I could then say something like "ah, here we see Lucas expressing his belief that the TV show and movies are the same", or somesuch.

A production desperado could then retort, "but he's talking about production issues!"

Now a real production desperado would stop at this point, because there is nothing else even remotely sensical that they could say.   Continued text would simply be rehashes and regurgitation of the claim, occasionally with phantom evidence wherein his fourth sentence somehow constitutes proof for his seventh.

But my fantasy production desperado who actually has a point and reasons about the world would retort thusly:

"No, this one is definitely a production-related statement.   If you look at the context of the whole section starting with the ENI question about their capability improvements since last season, you'll see that the whole conversation is on production issues.  Indeed, Lucas continues, "
My process doesn’t change because we’re in a different medium. We’re drawing a lot of inspiration from the original films, like Ralph McQuarrie’s concept art – but we’re also looking at the things that influenced those films in the first place. We’re integrating different genres, from westerns to war movies to Japanese cinema, and we’re incorporating all of those various aesthetics into The Clone Wars. "    That is clearly a production-specific idea."

And in this case, this fantasy desperado would be right.  Lucas, following on from Filoni who discusses the enhancements to the CGI series workflow and production capabilities, talks about the design of the show and how he approaches it.

In other words, that quote actually is Lucas talking about production issues.  

(( Now, I do think that there's something to be said for the fact that he's not trying to be different, whereas he has allowed the EU to diverge from his films, but that's not important right now. ))

So there you go, production desperadoes . . . that's how to make your case.   Now if you can genuinely pull that off with all the other quotes . . .

(e.g. the EU being "outside of my little universe" and "different universe" and a "parallel universe" and one of "two universes: my universe and then this other one" and as different "versions of Star Wars" that "don't always mesh" and with the two versions being "completely different and didn't have anything to do with each other", unlike as occurs with "the movies and TV shows are all under my control and they are consistent within themselves", and so on and so forth ad nauseum . . .)

 . . . then you might actually get somewhere.