The official 10 day countdown to Star Wars: The Force Awakens has begun and I think we’re all now really starting to feel the excitement! By sheer luck I happened to meet the amazing Douglas Lovelace while we were both waiting in line to board a flight. We got to talking and I found out he is in fact one of the few Story Board Artists for the original first season of Star Wars Rebels. I think by now we have established I am a big Rebels fan so it was the absolute highlight of my trip. I managed to ask him a few questions about the process of working on Star Wars Rebels and of course how excited he is for TFA. I thought I’d share the responses with you and some of his amazing artwork which can be found here: http://www.douglaslovelace.com/star-wars-rebels.html
Q: Did you work on all the episodes in the first season? I recognized some scenes from fighter flight and breaking ranks.
A: The episodes I worked on were:
Empire Day / Breaking Ranks / Fighter Flight / Spark of Rebelion / Rebel Resolve
Q: How was it to work for LucasArts? I always imagined it to be one of the best working environments because there is so much equipment and all the people seemed so lovely in the behind the scenes video. And what was your favourite episode or arc to work on?
A: Working at Lucasfilm in the Presidio in the SF Bay was about as good as it gets. ILM hallways are loaded with filmcraft items; Vigo’s portrait, Jurassic Raptors, mat paintings on glass, models and animatronics- it was more like being at Hogwarts than any other studio I’ve been in. Surrounded by the most amazing art and artists. Story for rebels was two teams, director and two story artist each, with directors also boarding. We worked in 3D programs with hand-drawn layers for action & acting.
A sequence I did for Breaking Ranks where the Cadets are in a training exercise, leaping from floating platforms while blasting each other, is a cool example of some of the logistics involved in an action sequence. I made a vertical chart and tracked where each character had to be at a given beat, so everyone was in the right place in the end.
Another scene kind of dear to me is the rendezvous between Vizago and Ezra in Rebel Resolve. It was just an incredibly cool sort of crime-story scene, and the reading of Vizago (Keith Szarabajka) was so expressive and sly that the acting just flowed out of it. There’s a beat where Ezra tells Vizago “Because Kanan is a Jedi”. Vizago reacts but so does the droid behind him. I tossed that in and thought it was pretty hilarious, so I was delighted to see it made the final cut.
Q: What do you think of the second season so far?
A: Absolutely love it!
Q: How did you react when we were told there would be a third Rebels season? And would you be willing to work on this season if possible?
A: I went, Hell Yeah! And absolutely!
Q: And finally the most important question of all…. How excited are you for the Force Awakens?! We can only about just contain our excitement.
A: Having had the great honor and privilege of working with the geniuses in the Star Wars world, apart from being fun, I also felt more intensely connected to the mythic aspect of Star Wars. George got it right when he placed his players in archetypal positions is a world of pure magic (no science, please). It’s clear we are on the cusp of a new Star Wars renaissance. My plan is to avoid spoiler-chatter with the discipline of a Mandaloran mercenary, sneak in a week after opening at the 6am show, and have my own private perfect epiphany.
It was an absolute honour to be able to talk to him and we will catch up with him again after the Force Awakens has released to see what his initial reaction is to the film. Thank you so much to Douglas Lovelace for being so nice and participating. He has created a wide spectrum of beautiful artwork which can all be viewed here .
Who else is starting to get nervous and excited at the same time? Leave a comment and don’t forget to subscribe to the blog and follow us on twitter @clonecorridor . If you’re also a big Star Wars Rebels fan we have a live tweeting session every Wednesday at 9:30 EST while the week’s new episode is being aired on Disney XD.