One of the many Star Wars projects announced during Disney's Investor Day event was The Bad Batch. This animated series follows experimental Clone Squadron 99 first introduced in Season 7 of Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
According to Lucasfilm, the series will focus on the squad in the wake of Revenge of the Sith, as they accept mercenary missions to survive in the early days of the Empire. And since the series is a spin-off of The Clone Wars, Dave Filoni is naturally at the helm of The Bad Batch and has shared his thoughts on the similarities shared by these two connected series.
In an interview with Andi Gutierrez for the Star Wars Show, Filoni discussed his decisions in directing "Chapter 13" of The Mandalorian, how Star Wars stories are becoming more connected, and how Disney+ has given his prior animated shows new life. He also talked about his next animated project The Bad Batch coming to Disney+ in 2021.
In response to questions about this new series, Filoni said that The Bad Batch will continue the legacy of Star Wars: The Clone Wars:
"I mean, it's a fun show; I'm very excited about it. I will say that like to me, it's very much in the vein of Clone Wars, and it follows the legacy that we started way back with George of telling very, very exciting adventure stories in the style of Clone Wars."
The final season of The Clone Wars was met with rave reviews and served as a strong finish for the ambitious series. Fans were left wanting more; and from Filoni's comments, it certainly sounds like that winning Clone Wars formula will remain the same for The Bad Batch.
In that same vein, Filoni continued saying,
"It does aspire to the look and the scale of those adventures which, I think, now the audience really demands to have the animated series be epic like we were at the end of the episodes of the Siege of Mandalore. And the animation team is doing such great work, so I'm very proud of them and the work that we're doing there."
For those who don't know, the Siege of Mandalore was the final arc of The Clone Wars series consisting of episodes 9-12 of the seventh season. This particular arc featured Ahsoka Tano, who is also receiving her own Disney+ series helmed by Filoni, and Clone Trooper Rex who served under both Tano and Anakin Skywalker. The arc also ran concurrently with the events of Revenge of the Sith.
This compelling story arc was hailed as some of the best of Star Wars storytelling and was largely responsible for the series' final season success.
WHAT THIS MEANS
Dave Filoni knows what a Star Wars story should be and how to make it work. He's proven that time and again with The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels, and The Mandalorian; and from his comments about The Bad Batch, that doesn't look to be changing any time soon.
What's especially interesting is Filoni's comments about what the audience now demands. The Siege of Mandalore arc in Season 7 of The Clone Wars was an action-packed, heartbreaking climax of seven seasons of storytelling. To bring that level of storytelling and artistry continually to The Bad Batch series sounds like an ambitious undertaking, but Filoni hasn't yet failed in upping the ante when it comes to one of his new projects.
The Bad Batch also needs to be an epic to compete with Star Wars series that have come before and that are currently in the works. But if Lucasfilm is actually creating their own series of interconnected stories in the style of the MCU, The Bad Batch should have some help in achieving that epic style Filoni referenced with possible character cameos and crossovers.
The Bad Batch is scheduled for a 2021 release on Disney+.