Animated Shows Entertainment

Dave Filoni Talks ‘Star Wars Rebels’ With Nerdist, NY Daily News, and More

With it being the final season of Star Wars Rebels, executive producer Dave Filoni has been approached by a variety of news outlets looking to shed more light on the story as well as the characters we’ve come know and love over the past four years.

Earlier in October, Nerdist kicked off the season with an interview that inevitably brought up more questions, especially in regards to the fates of Ezra and Kanan.

“If you watch Rebels from the very beginning, you think, here’s a kid [Ezra] and the problem he has is that the Empire had taken over his planet, Lothal. The promise seems to be that by the end of this, he will find a way to rid his world of the Empire. But we know that the Empire builds the Death Star, builds another Death Star, and they don’t really get destroyed until Luke does it. How in the world does this kid find any kind of victory in the middle of this conflict? What does he consider a victory? How is he going to use his powers? That’s what they [Kanan and Ezra] face, is what to do, where is their place in this fight, and what’s the result of it? That’s the fun part. Answering that last question has been exciting, and I think that it comes to a nice ending in the story.”

A “nice ending.” I’m not sure if I should take that to heart, but it gives me some comfort to know that he described the ending for those two characters in that way, especially as the series continues to wind down to the mid-season finale.

Filoni also spoke with the NY Daily News about the returning villain that had been introduced in season three, Grand Admiral Thrawn, as well as another antagonist hiding in the shadows. The interview also includes brief quotes regarding Rukh, the sources of inspiration behind Star Wars Rebels, and the white Loth-wolf.

As a diehard fan of Ezra, my eyes naturally gravitated toward the final sentence, “So who knows, hopefully the tale of Ezra Bridger will last a long time,” and this was said in the context of how Star Wars endures and how fans will continue to analyze the episodes for years to come. Personally, this gives me hope that Ezra’s story will be given a heroic end.

CNN Entertainment also briefly spoke with Filoni about the show’s ending and how there are limitless options in terms of what may come after Rebels.

“The ending works as it’s meant to. One of George’s main things about Star Wars is it is a story about hope. … I tried to stick to those themes.”

io9 had a series of 3 articles, one of which had another Ezra related quote that caught my eye, as seen below:

“I don’t know if there’s anything Ezra Bridger could really add to the saga of a Han Solo type character,” said Filoni, while also mentioning that many characters have come in and out of Rebels and how in doing that you run the risk of having “small galaxy syndrome.”

I like how Filoni incorporates and uses Ezra’s name in these interviews. Many, for some reason or another, don’t like Ezra, but that still doesn’t take away from the fact that the show is ultimately about Ezra’s journey. It started with Ezra and it will end with Ezra, so it’s great to see that the writers have stuck with this decision because regardless of what core fans think, Ezra is still the focus character.

io9 also confirmed that the fates of Ezra and Kanan as well as questions regarding Thrawn and Ahsoka will be touched in the remaining episodes.

“I would say that all of these things are on the table this season, because you try to answer all those things in the course of the series,” said Filoni. “So we tried to really bring all those answers to bear, whether people would like the answer or not, because it’s got to be contained within this story. So all those things were on the table going into this season.”

Filoni also vaguely talked about what’s next for him, emphasizing on the word “live-action” when talking about learning from directors like Rian Johnson. When it comes down to it, though, Filoni is all about just wanting to share stories.

“I want to celebrate stories, and it doesn’t matter what medium its in. I don’t care — big screen, small screen — I just need space to tell a story. And do it as best I can. That’s my goal in the end. So we’ll have to see what form that takes in the future. …But let’s just put it this way. I learned from the best.”

A most recent set of interviews also surfaced from

The topic of “Ezra becoming Snoke” came up, and it’s a theory that should be put to rest because we know that Snoke is a humanoid alien and that was established in the Star Wars: The Force Awakens novelization. Ezra is a human. I don’t know why the theory continues to fascinate people, but if you’ve done your research, you’ll know that the two characters are not the same.

Filoni also talked about the character that surprised him the most (Sabine), how the episodes that took place on Malachor were some of his biggest moments as a storyteller, how some of their best work is still to come in season four, and how the show doesn’t require knowledge of previous Star Wars content in order to be understood and appreciated. My mom is somewhat of an example of that. She watched the live-action movies years ago, but when she started Rebels, she hadn’t watched anything pertaining to Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Rebels was her first Star Wars animated series and she came away loving the characters and their adventures—things that don’t necessarily need a whole lot of outside Star Wars knowledge.

Also, in terms of an ending for Rebels, Filoni added, “How can you have an ending maybe that’s satisfactory, or are they doomed to destruction, as many people seem bent on these days? That this will be a bleak thing for our heroes? And I guess that that’s the exciting part, is they don’t really know yet which way it’s going to go.”

This particular quote highlights something that is widespread in the audience and that is the need to see destruction, death, and bleak outcomes. I like that Filoni is aware of that, and I hope that he and the team have cooked up something that is going to crush those depressing expectations.

Finally, Filoni was recently interviewed by, where he talked about Thrawn’s continued role in the show, Agent Kallus’ transition over to the Rebels, the Ralph McQuarrie concepts used throughout the show, what’s to come after Rebels, and more.

He also touched on the sort of “darkness” that fans want to see in future animated shows and content, as previously mentioned.

“There’s kind of a misperception that making things darker makes it somehow more valid, and I just don’t think that’s true. The things I grew up with in the Lucas/Spielberg era were actually incredibly hopeful and energetic and spontaneous, and it’s more about overcoming dark times and overcoming evil things … Our medium is for everybody, and you can do any type of story in it, it’s not something that’s limited just to kids. I think for people working in animation, it’s important for us to keep pushing that particular boundary. Who says we can’t do more and that these stories can’t be as spectacular as anything out there?”

This gives me hope that moving forward, we’ll continue to get content that is geared toward fans of all ages that captures both the humorous and serious nature of Star Wars without going into extremes.

What are you thoughts regarding what Filoni had to say in these interviews? Is there a quote that stood out to you? Share them in the comments section below.

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3 comments on “Dave Filoni Talks ‘Star Wars Rebels’ With Nerdist, NY Daily News, and More

  1. Thanks for this recap.
    I know that some blogs are dominated by a vocal minority who claim to speak for us all, and they are telling everyone that we really should soak for more darkness, more blood and gore. NOPE!!!
    Dave Filoni is right to remind us all that the primary focus is the story, because really, that’s why we love Rebels, because the stories actually are wonderful.
    These stories make us laugh, wonder, and examine real issues, whilst the Force is always making the galaxy bigger, and elevating that sense of mystery. I do so love that Kanan and Ezra have redefined what it means to be a Jedi, and I look forward to them challenging those boundaries in the few episodes we have left.
    Bleak and dark have their place, but so does laughter, love and hope.
    I think I like Rebels more than I liked TFA, because the stories are so much more compelling. Thanks, Wookies, glad you’re here.

  2. People put too much value in bleakness, darkness, as if stories without such are not good stories. Which is, of course, a complete fallacy.

    One had to always remember that Filoni is, first and foremost, a master storyteller. He dropped “feels” to the fandom when it’s proper and makes sense to the story as a whole. And yet, despite some highly emotional moments, the story always rebounds.

    And thus it behooves us the viewers to always remember SWR’s motto: Hope.

    Also, people seems to directly compare SWR with TCW which was spiraling into bleakness… but they seem to conveniently forgot that TCW took place during the ‘downturn’ between II and III, going toward nadir. It was inevitable. SWR, on the other hand, will be ‘bookended’ by IV. The nadir had passed, and the story is on an increasing crescendo.

  3. Jon Hodges

    I don’t want darkness in my story telling. I can enjoy a nice balance, so I hope Rebels can skip that bleakness

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