BB-8 might be the biggest star from this most recent Star Wars trilogy that began with Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Now, the little rollerball droid is poised to get his own stylistic spin-off with Star Wars Roll Out. In the new web series for StarWarsKids Youtube channel, many fan-favorite heroes have a new BB-8-inspired shape. Characters like Rey and Finn will star in fun adventures that employ a bright and vibrant color palette.
In the series trailer above, characters from this newest trilogy show off their new looks and BB-8 is a definite focal point. Star Wars Roll Out is all-ages family entertainment that looks to entice older viewers and children all at the same time. Such a stylized take might surprise long-time fans, but the creative team is very excited to expand what can be done with all of these memorable characters and their world.
“As Star Wars evolves with each passing year, it’s important for us to find new, light-hearted, and kid-friendly expressions of the franchise that still carry the heart, soul, and adventure of its original form,” James Waugh, Lucasfilm’s vice president of franchise content and strategy told StarWars.com. “One of the wonderful things about our Star Wars Kids channel is that we can experiment to see how far we can stretch the franchise to a new expression, while still being totally rooted, recognizable, and authentic.”
All of these new character designs are immensely charming and immediately convey the spirit of how heroes like Rey exist in the larger scope of the franchise. Fans can probably expect more of these types of experiments as the series continues beyond Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker later this year. Creating something that audience had never seen before on-screen was a huge goal for Star Wars Roll Out creator Hideo Itoyanagi
“I wanted to come up with something never [before] seen in Star Wars animation,” Itoyanagi explained to StarWars.com. “I wanted to give everything a totally different look. Given that the characters are caricatured, I decided to make the backgrounds simple, with paper-cutout silhouettes put on top of each other like something you might see in a picture book. The camera motion is quite flat and might remind you of old video games. I wanted to take a different route from 3D animation and recent video games.”
Itoyanagi's decisions led to a short animation series that feels like something that Keita Takahashi (Katamari Damacy) or Ben Esposito (Donut County) would have dreamed up. That sort of surreal space pairs well with the simplified visuals and zany physics at play in a world that looks to be made of paper.
Hideo Itoyanagi is just thankful for the opportunity to share these small adventures with a whole new generation of Star Wars fans. “That would be such an honor,” he told StarWars.com. “I feel so grateful from the bottom of my heart for been given this opportunity. Star Wars is loved by so many people. I would be so delighted if people get to [know] Star Wars through Roll Out.”
Star Wars Roll Out premiers on StarWarsKids.com and YouTube.com/StarWarsKids on August 9, 2019.