'Star Wars: Resistance' To Fill the Gaps Between 'Return of the Jedi' and 'The Force Awakens'

Star Wars Resistance

Animator Dave Filoni returns to the galaxy far, far away in an effort to expand the modern mythology.

One of the initial queries from fandom regarding The Force Awakens was how did the remnants of the Empire, last seen in Return of the Jedi, rebuild themselves into The First Order, and why would the Rebels scrap their brand for the Resistance? We thought such curiosities would be left to the novels and comics to explore, but the word from Disney is that a new animated adventure series will help fill in the gaps. Just as they did with The Clone Wars and Rebels, LucasFilm will expand its mythology significantly with Star Wars: Resistance.

According to Deadline, the series is well into production and expected to release on The Disney Channel this fall. Taking place shortly before Episode VII, Resistance will include the voice talent of Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron and Gwendoline Christie as Captain Phasma, and feature BB-8 in a prominent role. The main protagonist, however, will be a new character named Kazuda Xiono. The young pilot will secretly infiltrate the newly formed First Order, and report back to the Resistance. Star Wars espionage? Yes, please.

The rest of the voice cast will be populated by Christopher Sean (Hawaii Five-O), Suzie McGrath (East Enders), Scott Lawrence (Legion), Myrna Velasco (Elena of Avalor), Josh Brener (Silicon Valley), Donald Faison (Scrubs), Bobby Moynihan (DuckTales), Jim Rash (Community) and Rachel Butera (Tammy’s Tiny Tea Time). No word yet on what new or old characters they may be playing.

Star Wars: Resistance is being overseen by many of the creative talents responsible for both The Clone Wars and Rebels. The series is the brainchild of LucasFilm mastermind Dave Filoni, and he’s aided by executive producers Athena Portillo, Justin Ridge, and Brandon Auman. Amy Beth Christenson, who rose from The Force Unleashed video games to creature designer on The Clone Wars,  is on board as the lead art director.

In the ever-present speculation surrounding who will helm the next Star Wars saga, Dave Filoni was always a name championed by the fan community. Through his work on Avatar: The Last Airbender, The Clone Wars, and Rebels, Filoni revealed a steel trap brain capable of navigating an infinitely expanding mythology. I mean, he actually made the prequels palatable. So yeah, he seemed like a natural fit to take on his own set of films like Rian Johnson and David Benioff and D.B. Weiss. The chances of that happening any time soon seem relatively slim.

Why should he care? Filoni has his own set of keys to the kingdom. By playing in the animated world surrounding the galaxy far, far away, the director is free to enrich the universe in ways that a two hour movie never could. As his previous spin-offs have proven successful, Filoni now gets to play with some of the top-tier characters. Not to mention that he’s afforded a massive amount of time to them that only television could offer.

Projects like Star Wars: Resistance are Disney’s biggest opportunities to guarantee the franchise’s grip on the culture. They exist to satiate our hunger between meals, and the digestion process keeps us from wandering over to someone else’s kitchen. The fact that Filoni has already shown that his shows can hold as much dramatic weight as the cinematic achievements make the feast all the sweeter.

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Trekkie, Not Trekker. Weekly Columnist for Film School Rejects, co-host of the In The Mouth of Dorkness Podcast.