The Mandalorian Director on the First-Ever Live-Action Star Wars Series
In a little over a month, The Mandalorian will become the first-ever live-action Star Wars series when it debuts on Disney+ on November 12. Set five years after the events in Star Wars: Episode VI – The Return of the Jedi, the new series will focus on Pedro Pascal’s titular bounty hunter. We’ll see, among other galaxy-shaping events, the rise of the First Order, that Empire 2.0 that has been menacing our new heroes like Rey (Daisy Ridley) in the new Star Wars trilogy that began with J.J. Abrams 2015 film The Force Awakens. Yet The Mandalorian will not be primarily focused with t he Skywalker Saga. Instead, the show will give us a peek what life is like at the margins of the galaxy, where bounty hunters and remnants of the Empire coexist—or die trying. In a conversation with IGN, director Dave Filoni talked about the new series (he directs two episodes in season one) and how Pascal’s bounty hunter is a new kind of Star Wars hero:
“This show is dealing with a character that, to me, he’s a bounty hunter, he’s on the edge of things himself…Where, in the movies, we deal more with Luke, who’s a character coming into his own, but he wants to do the right thing. And when you’re dealing with the Jedi, they’re obviously trying to uphold what’s good in the light side of the Force. I think that what’s unique about Mando is that he’s basically a guy that’s just trying to make a living in the galaxy. He’s a survivor and he’s just trying to find his way on a day-to-day basis. And I think that leads to very interesting character moments and stories for him that are apart from some things we’ve seen the Jedi deal with more directly. He comes from a different angle because he’s a different type of character than they are.”
The IGN interview also gives us a glimpse of the Mandalorian’s ship—the Razor Crest—with a cool image from inside the cockpit. As for the actual filmmaking process, Filoni discussed how cutting-edge things were on set. They utilized virtual reality and videogame engine technology in order to block out scenes in totally digital environments before they filmed on the practical sets.
“I would liken it in some ways to what I was doing with George on The Clone Wars, where now through digital technology you can visualize scenes and sequences earlier,” Filoni told IGN. “In animation, we call it a previs and it was a natural fit for me in this process because it did have these digital elements, but some of it when we were shooting was really brand new technology. And that also was good for me because I didn’t have any preconceived notion about how anything should be done. I was learning the process with all the new technology… And there’s a strong animation component in the way that we visualize some of the things early on in the virtual blocking… It’s one of the reasons why Kathy [Kennedy] thought this would be a great connection for me. Not just because I knew Jon, but I had some insights into the technology.”
Check out the trailer here:
Featured image: Pedro Pascal is ‘The Mandalorian.’ Courtesy Walt Disney Studios/Disney+