Star Wars: Clone Wars Creator Breaks Silence on The Force Awakens Similarities

When audiences caught their first glimpse at Star Wars: The Force Awakens, some viewers immediately recognized imagery from the animated Star Wars: Clone Wars, but creator Genndy Tartakovsky admits that he's not too sour about the film possibly lifting elements from his series and that he has moved on to other projects. The creator did, however, find it frustrating that the purchase of Lucasfilm by Disney resulted in his series being deemed no longer canonical, yet he is still glad that the program is enjoyed by so many audiences, even if a new animated series has since debuted chronicling a similar time period.

"The [Force Awakens] opening sequence with all the Star Destroyers crashed on the planet," Tartakovsky detailed to Digital Spy. "That was literally, exactly the setting that we did for when we introduced General Grievous. It’s even the same silhouette and everything. I mean, they could have come up with it without seeing ours. But it seems too suspicious, you know? And nobody credited us. A few people caught it, but it certainly, to me, was like, 'Wow! Hey! Look at that! That’s exactly what we did!' Well, you know, yeah, I’ll take it."

Tartakovsky's Clone Wars debuted back in 2003 and consisted of "micro-episodes," which were two to three minutes in length. While the latter Clone Wars series explored the years of conflict during that era, Tartakovsky's series was meant to prepare audiences for the events of Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, which included fans' first looks at the villain General Grievous. The series earned 25 episodes, including five 15-minute episodes.

Prior to the debut of the latter Clone Wars series, there were a number of Star Wars animated series, novels, and comic books that explored all corners of the galaxy and existed alongside one another, with Tartakovsky expressing his disappointment at the seeming erasure of his series.

"It’s frustrating that they tried to erase it from being canon," the creator admitted. "At first, it was canon. And then once George [Lucas] started doing the CG version, he wanted to clean the slate. And so they de-canonized ours. But you know what? The whole Star Wars thing – I’ve moved on. Like you said, it is what it is. I don’t lose sleep over it [laughs]. It’s fun to have people still love it, and for new people to still discover it."

Despite the many frustrations, the creator is still proud of the work he and his team accomplished.

"We developed it in two weeks, and we did it so fast with a skeleton crew," he confessed. "For it to have as much praise as it gets, it’s really great. I’m super-proud of it and I know it’s influenced a lot, as far as Star Wars going forward, which is great – whether people want to admit to it or not [laughs]. But it is what it is. I know what we did, and I know the stuff that came after."

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While most Star Wars content is currently available on Disney+, Star Wars: Clone Wars is not.

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