On 11 March 2013, Lucasfilm announced that it was axing Clone Wars. The media release stated:
As we enter into an exciting new era focused on the next Star Wars trilogy, Lucasfilm has decided to pursue a new direction in animated programming. We are exploring a whole new Star Wars series set in a time period previously untouched in Star Wars films or television programming. You can expect more details in the months to come.
That show was Rebels, of course. The decision came after the airing of Season 5.
While the studio is no longer producing new episodes for Cartoon Network, we’re continuing production on new Clone Wars story arcs that promise to be some of the most thrilling adventures ever seen. Stay tuned for more information on where fans can soon find this bonus content.
Now, that “bonus content” turned out to be:
- 13 finished episodes (which were at first called the Lost Missions and are now on Netflix as Season 6)
- Dark Disciple, a novelisation of unfinished episodes involving Asajj Ventress and Quinlan Vos
- Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir, a comic published by Dark Horse Comics (this was one of the last comics published by Dark Horse before Marvel took over the exclusive rights to create and publish Star Wars comics from the start of 2015)
- Crystal Crisis on Utapau, a 4-episode storyline that is unfinished and available only in ‘story reel’ (very rough animation) on StarWars.com
- Bad Batch, another 4-episode story reel storyline.
It was an interesting decision. Disney came in and apparently decided it wanted to concentrate the Lucasfilm Animation resources on Rebels, in spite of the fact that Season 6 was well advanced (as evidenced by 13 finished episodes, and 8 episodes at story reel stage). And yet when the canon decision was handed down, not only did Clone Wars survive, but so also did the ‘bonus content’. Well, with the possible exception of the last two) are officially canon. I possibly except the last two because they don’t appear on official canon lists because they are so rough and don’t make the grade in terms of finished product. However, Clone Wars episodes were written about three years ahead of airing, the voicing was all complete in the episodes, and yeah, its just a presentation issue, not a story issue. Anyway, thats the line I’m going with.
So this is going to be a short series of posts on ‘After Clone Wars’ including what is now Season 6 (comin’ up next!)