Star Wars Rebels Ezra crossguard lightsaber

For fans that have been routinely watching ‘Star Wars Rebels,’ the CGI-animated show airing on Disney TV about the exploits of the group of characters that form the very beginning of the Rebellion, it comes as no surprise that the show is “officially” connected to the larger Star Wars Universe canon.  We’ve seen several guest stars on the show featured in the classic trilogy of films, including Princess Leia, C-3PO and R2-D2, Lando Calrissian, and the Man in the Iron Mask himself, Darth Vader.

As the show enters its third season, the question that many viewers are starting to ask is just how exactly might the show fit into the upcoming Star Wars projects?  Yes, ‘Rebels’ has done an excellent job of inserting itself relatively seamlessly into existing canon – it even managed to integrate itself with the “other” CGI Star Wars TV show that came before it, ‘Clone Wars,’ with the second-season inclusion of Anakin Skywalker’s padawan Ahsoka Tano as a ‘Rebels’ series regular – but will we see the show’s characters or plot points impacting any of the upcoming big-screen properties?

Since their purchase of the ‘Star Wars’ universe, Disney has gone to great lengths to ensure that canon stays as unified and faithful as possible – including the much-maligned but obviously necessary decision to take the existing “Extended Universe” of Star Wars tales that had been told in novel, comic-book, and video-game form over the last 30 or so years and turn it into the non-canon “Legends” alternative-universe.  The company also created the Lucasfilm Story Group, a small collection of writers and creative types whose sole job is to ensure that anything Star Wars-related (films, TV shows, books, games, the whole shebang) maintains the continuity and integrity of the over-arching storyline being created.  (Note: “goofy” or just-for-fun projects like the ‘LEGO Star Wars’ video games are given exemption.  You know, for fun!)

‘Star Wars Rebels’ co-creator Simon Kinberg (a name pop-culture fans recognize from his work on other films like the current ‘X-Men’ series, ‘Deadpool,’ and ‘Fant4stic,’ for better or for worse), is a member of the Lucasfilm Story Group, and as a result is keenly attuned to where the show can – and has to – fit into the larger universe.  In a recent interview with Moviefone, Kinberg expressed how cool it was to be a part of something “bigger picture” like this:

“I’m very excited. I think part of the fun of the way they’re building the universe is that it is interconnected between the different movies and even beyond the movies … It’s something that was true in comic books going back, the way that you’d have interconnections between characters and stories. Even sometimes from DC to Marvel. I like the way that those stories are told in the larger tapestry. And, also, getting to work with other artists and filmmakers and writers, and use their talents — I like not being by myself in a room when I work. I like having other collaborators. You’re with some of the world’s best.”

As for ‘Rebels’ specifically, Kinberg was a bit coy with detailed information, but did speak enthusiastically about how the show has progressed so far and what the future could hold:

“What’s lovely is, obviously, we’ve brought in characters from ‘Clone Wars’ in the second season, and we keep sort of bringing characters from the original movies and sort of deepening the relationships between our core characters, the Ghost crew. So it’s trying to balance the two different things, like the original cast from the first season with ‘Clone Wars,’ with characters from the original movies, and maybe even feeding into future movies.”

Current speculation suggests that ‘Rebels’ will either loosely tie into the upcoming ‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,’ the next big-screen film to hit theaters this December (just a few months after the third season of ‘Rebels’ is set to premiere on Disney XD, natch), or the announced-but-not-yet-filming ‘Anthology’ film that will focus on a young Han Solo story.  Both movies fit generally into the ‘Rebels’ chronology, as the show is taking place in between the events of Episode III, ‘Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith,’ and Episode IV, ‘Star Wars: A New Hope.’

Season 3 of ‘Star Wars Rebels’ is set to premiere sometime this Fall on Disney XD.

horizontal line

If Tony Schaab has learned anything about patriotism from sci-fi films, it’s that speeches made to a handful of people in a jet-fighter hangar or other rag-tag military-type setting are damned inspiring!  A lover of most things sci-fi and horror, Tony is an author by day and a DJ by night. Come hang out with Tony on Facebook and Twitter to hear him spew semi-funny nonsense and get your opportunity to finally put him in his place.