During a press conference in Tokyo, the directors of each episode of Star Wars: Visions, the new original anime series Disney +, they talked in depth about the show, sharing new details about the different stories in this anthology series with fans and enthusiasts.
As already seen with the first video special look of the show, this animated series all the magic of Star Wars to the Japanese collective imagination, merging the soul of the Rising Sun with the most famous space opera of all time, allowing you to explore the universe of Star Wars in a revolutionary way.
Synopsis and details of the nine shorts of Star Wars: Visions
But let’s find out together the main details and the synopsis of each of the nine shorts that make up Star Wars: Visions, episodes made by first level animation studios whose names are linked to the best Japanese anime productions.
- The Duel – Kamikaze Douga
- Lop and Ochō – Geno Studio (Twin Engine)
- Tatooine Rhapsody – Studio Colorido (Twin Engine)
- The Twins – Trigger
- The Elder – Trigger
- The Village Bride – Kinema Citrus
- Akakiri – Science Saru
- T0-B1 – Science Saru
- The Ninth Jedi – Production IG
Having already directed Batman Ninja, Kamikaze Douga’s Junpei Mizusaki is no stranger to traditional Japanese reinterpretations of classic Western characters.
The episode of Star Wars: Visions he directed follows a similar project, and during the press conference he explained that his character designer Takashi Okazaki “has embraced an Akira Kurosawa cinematic style,” which animation director Takanobu Mizuno has then adapted for animation.
Mizusaki has indicated that “The Duel” will show us a new side of Star Wars. Speaking of the story, the main director said: “The Jedi against the Sith and the Rebels against the Empire are common parts of the Star Wars lore. But what if a random person in an unknown corner of the universe gets hold of a lightsaber or that power by himself? This is the premise of “The Duel”.
Lop and Ochō
The story is set between Episode III and Episode IV. The Galactic Empire is expanding across the galaxy.
On a particular planet where the inhabitants live in close contact with nature, the Empire lands and builds a base. Their new technology causes conflict with the villagers and the protagonist Ocho, who is the daughter of a kind of local yakuza family, meets the slave orphan Lop, who is a Jaxxon-inspired humanoid alien creature similar to a rabbit from classic comics. Star Wars. The two meet and form a strong family bond even if they are not united by blood ties.
Director Yuki Igarashi Geno Studio said he expects a Japanese period movie atmosphere, thanks in part to the soundtrack, which will mix John Williams-style orchestration with “a distinctively Japanese flavor”.
Described as a rock opera, Tatooine Rhapsody looks like it will be completely different in style from the other episodes.
Directed by newcomer Taku Kimura at Studio Colorido, the anime short portrays characters such as Jabba the Hutt and Boba Fett along with a cast of new characters with bold character designs.
“It has rock music, action and a concert scene,” Kimura enthused of her episode, “It has a message that pushes you to do what’s in your heart, regardless of your location.”
The director explained that the use of existing Star Wars characters in his animation was accompanied by a sense of responsibility. “Boba Fett and Jabba the Hutt have a lot of fans who love them, so I tried to balance the weight of expectations with some new characters and a satisfying story,” he said. “There was a lot of pressure!”
The Elder and The Twins
Masahiko Otsuka and Hiroyuki Imaishi, the two founders of Studio Trigger (studio behind anime like Kill La Kill, Little Witch Academy and Promare) explained that their two Visions shorts will mark the end of the Skywalker Saga, with Otsuka’s “The Elder” set sometime before Episode I and Imaishi’s “The Twins” set after the events of Episode IX.
“For some viewers, this series may be their first Star Wars experience, so I wanted to create something that you can enjoy without any knowledge of the rest of the story,” Otsuka said. “So our story is not directly related to any of the characters in the films, but explores the idea of the Jedi Knights and the dynamics of the master and padawan in an older setting.”
“‘The Twins’ is set after Episode IX, after the Empire was defeated by the Resistance,” said Imaishi. “The remnants of the Imperial Army raised a pair of twins on the dark side of the Force, and the story starts from there.” Imaishi referred to the twins seeking “a new hope,” suggesting some thematic references to that other story about a pair of Force-sensitive twins.
The Village Bride
The Village Bride by Kinema Citrus it will show the wedding traditions of an unknown planet, even if it is not certain that the ceremony will go smoothly.
“There are so many planets in the galaxy and I wanted to explore the various customs that might be out there,” said the director. Hitoshi Haga, who previously worked on Made in Abyss. “Weddings are celebrated in so many different ways, even here on Earth, and I wanted to show how customs can differ using the recognizable example of a wedding ceremony.” “Even in Japan, we have had a variety of different types of wedding customs over time and not all weddings are happy occasions. So who knows what could happen. “
Haga hinted that The Village Bride’s setting might be familiar to Made in Abyss fans, as just as the anime will show one of the many sides of nature: “In showing the culture of our village, we wanted to show nature. surrounding it, which is a similar theme and could give you a taste of what nature looks like in Japan ”.
The director then added that there was the opportunity to involve the younger staff of Kinema Citrus, giving the new generation a chance in a Star Wars project with a Japanese flavor. “In our studio, we have a lot of younger staff and I’m one of the older ones. It’s kind of like Obi-Wan teaching Luke, and I wanted to show them my way of making Japanese anime in a traditional style ”.
Akakiri, directed by the boss of Science SARU Eunyoung Choi, is described as an ephemeral love story between a Jedi and a princess, and it doesn’t necessarily have a happy ending. The director revealed that it is a kind of short road movie that follows the two of them and their friends on their journey.
Choi attributed to her studio’s young and culturally diverse staff and Lucasfilm’s hands-on approach for allowing her to offer something fresh in “Akakiri”.
T0-B1, directed by Abel Góngora of Science SARU, sees as the main protagonist one of the topoi most iconic narratives of the Star Wars saga: a small droid with an important task to perform.
“It’s the story of a little droid, but even if it’s a robot, it has its dreams,” Góngora said. “But eventually he will give up his dreams for something bigger, so it’s like a story of growth.”
The director, originally from Spain but a long-time resident in Japan, said he feels the responsibility to “respect Japanese animation and also the Star Wars universe” and T0-B1 is his attempt to find a balance between the two. . As such, the main droid is somewhat reminiscent of Osamu Tezuka’s Astro Boy, while the sense of adventure and the theme of finding greatness within oneself seem to be very Star Wars.
The Ninth Jedi
What became of the Jedi after the rise of Skywalker? What happened to the millennial order of the guardians of the Galaxy?
Production IG director Kenji Kamiyama said his short film “The Ninth Jedi” will be set after Episode IX.
“I was wondering, after Episode IX, has the galaxy stabilized and is it at peace? We all love stories of the Jedi and lightsabers, but what happened to the Jedi Knights after the Skywalker saga? My story is about this, ”Kamiyama said.
“When I saw Star Wars for the first time, I was fascinated by the story of this guy, Luke Skywalker, who came out of nowhere and embarked on a great adventure, and for me this is the root of the fascination of Star Wars,” he said the director, “So I wanted to portray a galactic-level adventure with a different character.”
Kamiyama started working on classics like Akira before becoming director of anime series like Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex. The director is also currently co-directing the first season of the upcoming anime series Blade Runner: Black Lotus. This revered director saw in Visions an opportunity to return to traditional animation techniques to create a truly handcrafted work.
“I’ve been making 3D CG anime for several years,” Kamiyama said. “But this time I decided to go back to Japanese-style hand-drawn animation, along with the talented animators at Production IG I haven’t done that in a while, so it was really exciting.”
“Japanese hand-drawn animation is very different from CG animation,” he continued. “It’s very difficult to produce, even for a story like this. But for a title like Star Wars, all the animators and I knew we had to give it everything we have, and I think it will be something a little different, with a classic hand-drawn style. “
Star Wars: Visions release date
Star Wars: Visions will be available in the Disney Plus catalog starting next September 22nd.