Fresh off the premiere of the Mandalorian season three and Ahsoka teasers, Dave Filoni, the patron saint of Star Wars animation, brought babies and darkness to Star Wars Celebration Weekend. His new six-episode anthology series, Star Wars: Tales Of The Jedi, announced today, promises a darker look at his animated worlds set in the “prequel era.” But at least we’re getting a little Baby Ahsoka.
Filoni’s latest series will follow the same animation style he’s been perfecting since Clones Wars. The digital claymation looks more detailed than ever, particularly in closeups of Ahsoka. However, the pacing is markedly slower, creating a series of tone poems with less dialogue and more expressive animation. Filoni attributed this to Hayao Miyazaki, the anime master Filoni studied while working on Avatar: The Last Airbender.
Additionally, Filoni brought the first Jedi tale with him. Entitled “Life And Death,” the short, 15-minute episode presents Ahsoka’s birth and first hunting trip—because how could we tell a story in Star Wars without a little gun-based violence. Still, Baby Ahsoka had the audience at Celebration Weekend eating out of her little baby palm.
Tales Of The Jedi also brings a host of classic characters back to Star Wars, including Liam Neeson, who will voice Qui-Gon Jinn. Each episode will tell a different story—though Ahsoka features heavily in several. The trailer for the series also featured appearances by Anakin Skywalker, Mace Windu, Ponda Baba, and Count Dooku. During a discussion preceding the episode, Filoni kept saying that the Dooku episode was particularly dark.
“We had a fun time, but these aren’t just fun, happy stories. It gets rough at times,” Filoni said. “You wouldn’t be happy unless you overcome something possibly tragic along the way. Some of these are dark. Some of these I watched later and was like, ‘Wow, what was I doing?’ And I was in lockdown like everyone else, so that explains that. But this Dooku one, which I don’t know if you know, doesn’t end up so good for him, I was like, ‘This is surprisingly tragic.’”
The series shares its title with a run of Dark Horse comics from the 90s that told something called “Expanded Universe,” which has since been rebranded “Star Wars Legends,” and they aren’t canon, so stop asking.
All six Tales Of The Jedi episodes are expected to hit Disney+ this fall.