Star Wars Mania

BY DEAN MOSES

December marks the release of the newest Star Wars motion picture, The Force Awakens. Fans old and new alike are eagerly awaiting its release, so much so that theaters are already adding additional showing times to accommodate mass audiences. While you are awaiting its release, there are plenty of other trips you can take to that galaxy far, far away. One such journey comes in the form of Star Wars Rebels, an animated television series that is set between the 1999 prequel trilogy and the 1977 original Star Wars trilogy. Now entering its second season, Star Wars Rebels follows a young boy learning to use the force, and his ragtag group of friends as they face the evil Galactic Empire.

Coming hot off the heels of the successful Star Wars Clone Wars series, Rebels tries to capture that classic Star Wars movie feel. A crew including Jedi, aliens, and droids find themselves way over their heads in situations that they only just manage to escape from, à la Han Solo and friends.

In October, the Spring Creek Sun caught an early screening of the first two episodes. The new season’s debut saw characters from Clone Wars return; however, they look different since quite some time has passed within the show. A Jedi named Ahsoka Tano was the child padawan of Anakin Skywalker (Darth Vader), who left the Jedi order before the dark events of Revange of the Sith. In Rebels, we see her as an adult. The prospect of Ahsoka coming face to face with Lord Vader is an exciting one, and has been teased in the trailer for season two. Clone troopers also made an appearance. Despite being in their golden years, these former republic soldiers showed that they could still keep up with the young adventurers.

After the showing, members of the media attended a press only conference featuring the cast of Star Wars Rebels, including: Ashley Eckstein, (Ahsoka Tano) Taylor Gray, (Ezra Bridger) writer, director Dave Filoni, and Sarah Michelle Gellar (Seventh Sister).

Perhaps the most publicized of the new additions to the Star War universe is Gellar. She made sure everyone knew that she was well versed in Star Wars knowledge. “One of the things I really loved about Clone Wars, was watching the development of Anakin from good to what pushed him over that side. I think there is so much story there. Someone asked me recently, if you could play any character in all of the lore, who would you want to be? I said I would love to be Anakin in that transition. What happens to the soul when everything they’re taught, everything they believe in changes to make them be something that is the opposite of everything they were taught and believed in? I find the psyche of that extremely fascinating,” Gellar said.

Ashley Eckstein had this to say about the change in her character’s age, “Sometimes I would have to do some extra takes, because I would want to read it as Clone Wars Ahsokha, she’s changed so much since then.” If you feel like the force is strong with Star Wars Rebels, or you just want to get pumped for the upcoming movie, you can find it on Disney XD, every Wednesday.

Photos: Dean Moses

Force Facts

December 18th will mark the return of the Star Wars movie franchise. It will be the series’ first movie in ten years, and the first to feature Han Solo, Chewbacca, Princess Leia, and Luke Skywalker in 32 years. The Force Awakens is not just going to showcase old faces, many new ones will appear as well. Despite being so close to the release date, story details remain vague. However, we do know that we will get to see the famed Millennium Falcon in action again, and that the new antagonist, Kylo Ren, possesses Darth Vader’s charred helmet, indicating that he could be a crazed fan of the Sith Lord. Not only that, Fin, a new protagonist, seems to have gotten ahold of Luke Skywalker’s lightsaber, the same lightsaber that was last seen when Darth Vader cut off his hand. There will also be a new planet debuting, called Jakku. This desert world will be home to thieves and outlaws, and seems to hold the wreckage of a Star Destroyer, one of the Empire’s gigantic spaceships. Perhaps a great battle took place there but we will have to wait until December 18th to find out more.