Clone Wars or Animatrix...Which Approach Do You Prefer?

Discussion in 'Star Wars TV' started by Darth Jamus, Apr 13, 2003.

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  1. Darth Jamus Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2000
    star 4
    We already know the approach being used for the upcoming Clone Wars cartoon by Lucasfilm, being twenty 2 to 3 minute shorts animated in the style of the popular animated series Samurai Jack and covering some of the Clone Wars themselves. It stars the main characters from the prequel trilogy and bridges the gaps between Episode 2 and 3! But what about the Animatrix?

    I just finished reading up on what to expect from the new Matrix series anime in Entertainment Weekly, in which the first three of eight installments are already available for viewing on the web, as well as the theatrical Final Flight Of The Osiris currently running in theatres with Dreamcatcher. The EW article stated that each installment was anywhere from 7 1/2 to 17 minutes long, featuring work from some of the top animator's in the field, as well as their full creative control. The Wachowski brothers, having written two to six page treatments for the animators, had no problem giving them the creative freedom they had requested. This actually resulted in five of the stories being complete originals that were not written by the Wachowski's at all. The other four segments deviate substantially from the treatments provided by the director/brother pair, but the article states that they were completely unperturbed by the changes. In the end, this series will provide a few key episodes that tie directly in to the movies, while the others are simply independent stories set within the Matrix universe.

    Now, the purpose of this thread is to debate which approach to the animated movie series tie-ins that you prefer. Clone Wars sounds interesting, but I am still unconvinced over the use of that particular style of animation. I understand why George Lucas cannot give too much leeway to the creators of this series, considering the issues that will be dealt with in the final film, yet they do seem to be doing a good job introducing new characters and situations! Still, there isn't much room to expand given the time frame we are offered with this series. [face_plain]

    I have uncertainties about the story qualities of Animatrix though. I am no fan of the Star Wars EU, and I don't honestly know if I will care for the original takes on the Matrix universe. I'll just have to wait and see how that turns out. I have not yet viewed any of it as of this writing, but I have read the story outlines in the current EW magazine! All I will say is that the ones directly attached to the films main storyline and the history of the Matrix itself seems most appealing. :cool: I share this view point on Star Wars too, not really looking forward to the made up portions as much as the continued adventures of the movie characters!

    I think that in the end, I find myself wishing that the Clone Wars series was taking a bit more of the approach being used by Animatrix. Don't get me wrong, I think that the story line and direction of the series will be fine, I would just like to have seen the show animated using the best studios available. Final Flight Of The Osiris cost $5 million alone, while the others came in at around $500,000 each. I do not know what the price tag of the Clone Wars series will be, but I am willing to bet it will be far less and the quality will show! I am looking at what "could have been" visually versus what we are actually getting. It is a bit of a bummer! :(

    I would also like to have seen Clone Wars presented in longer installments. I just don't see how we can get a well thought out cohesive storyline when constantly interrupted every three minutes (though it should play out better on DVD I hope). It seems to me that releasing fewer, longer installments would have been a wiser move. I would dare say that ditching the TV angle may have even been a good idea, in favor of a DVD release or web based releases like the Animatrix is doing.

    Please share your thoughts and comparisons about these two upcoming series and what we know about them so far. Wha
  2. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    I prefer the Clone Wars approach. I saw the first Animatrix short. It didn't knock my socks off, and I fail to see why people are getting so worked up over them.
  3. Darth Jamus Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2000
    star 4
    Shelley, which Animatrix did you see, Final Flight Of The Osiris or the first web based episode? Just curious, because as I mentioned above I am not to thrilled over some of the ideas being presented in the more independent storylines (the equivelant of the EU) presented, but rather the few that tie in to the films directly. Anyhow, you don't think that it would have benefited Clone Wars to go a different route other than these 3 minute shorts for television? I beleive that releasing the show the way Animatrix is being released would have provided more of an opportunity for adult entertainment. It could still appeal to children too, but I am afraid that the current approach will appeal "too" much to children in all honesty. :( Perhaps I'll be wrong in that fear though, who knows! :D Let's not compare story quality at this point though, seeing that the series in not yet released and we do not know too much, but rather the approach used by the creators. :)
  4. Jedi_Master_Neo Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 13, 2003
    Hello. First of all, this is my first post hear, so I am very excited, since I have been a Star Wars fan for 7 years now.(Well, until the Matrix came along) I am a fan of most of the summer movies, both prequils and sequils comeing out, so I can offer alot of oppinons.

    I like the Clone War idea just as it is. The Animatrix is more for hardcore fans 17+, thats why they are not releaced publicaly. Final Flight had to be releaced in a Rated R movie, because of this one gorry sceen! Star Wars were always ment for a 8-19 yr old crowd, and so I think showing them on CN is just grate!

    Ya know, us Matrix Fans had the same worrys that you guys have now about your shorts. However, when 2nt Rennasance came on, people shutted up prity quickly. So I am shure they will do find. The W Bros. created a mini-movie that felt like 2 hours, can you already visualise what George and Taowski can do in 3! 0.0!
  5. Pooja Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 25, 2002
    star 6
    I like both. They are both unique. However, I think I'll like the Clone Wars approach in the end.
  6. Latorski Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 14, 2002
    star 4
    Welcome Jedi Master Neo!

    I posted this in another thread. I don't feel like typing out another response so here it is again:

    I haven't seen The Matrix animated shorts and, therefore, can't really comment on them, but I do think there's an understated elegance and poetry to the simplicity of Samurai Jack. I think that style will work well with the Clone Wars. Animation style is a matter of personal taste and I like the highly visual style of Samurai Jack.
  7. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    I saw "Flight of the Osiris" in the theater; it played before "Dreamcatcher."

    It was well made, but like I said, it didn't knock my socks off.
  8. TheWombat Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 9, 2002
    star 4
    Just because something costs less does not make it worse. Compare Clerks to Waterworld. Get my point?

    I like the Clone Wars idea. There is nothing wrong with normal animation v/s computer animation. Simply a different media. I love cartoons. :D

    I think they'll be great. I've never watched Samurai Jack, but a friend tells me it's outstanding.
  9. tpr Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2003
    Well, I haven't seen either, Clone Wars isn't out yet and I don't have a way to watch the Animatrix shorts (Only broadband connection I have now is at the University and their quicktime doesn't work well.)

    Thats part of the reason that I think I'll prefer the Clone Wars approach, just because I don't have to walk to a lab and spend time downloading it, I can just turn on my TV. That then becomes a question of In Demand sort of things where I'm working on their schedual not mine. Still I conisider that a + for the clone war shorts.

    I also agree with Jamus that the whole Animatrix thing seems too EUish (like I said I haven't seen any yet but the Matrix web site did a similar thing with comics awhile back) its everyones diffrent take on things and it all seems to get muddled after awhile. On the other hand, really thats all the Clone War shorts are, more people tring their hand at Lucas's world.
  10. Darth Jamus Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2000
    star 4
    "I like the Clone War idea just as it is. The Animatrix is more for hardcore fans 17+, thats why they are not releaced publicaly. Final Flight had to be releaced in a Rated R movie, because of this one gorry sceen! Star Wars were always ment for a 8-19 yr old crowd, and so I think showing them on CN is just great"

    First off, let me say welcome to the forumsJedi_Master_Neo, I am honored that you chose my thread for your first post! :D When I state that I would like to see Clone Wars take an approach similar to that of Animatrix, I do not mean to imply that I want a Rated R version! My points are simply geared towards the animation quality issue more than anything. I also fear that the story may not be up to par, but we cannot actually make a judgement like that till the show actually comes out now can we?? ;) I am just not convinced that this shorts version is the way to go, though showing a mini-series of sorts on the Cartoon Network would have made me happier! :)

    "I like both. They are both unique. However, I think I'll like the Clone Wars approach in the end"

    Care to expand on the reason behind your opinion Pooja??????

    "I saw 'Flight of the Osiris' in the theater; it played before 'Dreamcatcher'"

    Well, I will be waiting for the Animatrix DVD to be released on June 4 to see them. I heard Dreamcatcher was less than satisfying, but I had no real desire to see it anyways! In all honesty, I will be waiting for Clone Wars to make its way to DVD as well, I have no desire to attempt to tune in for 3 minute segments in between programming, I would rather watch the completed works if they get released that way! ;)

    "Just because something costs less does not make it worse. Compare Clerks to Waterworld. Get my point?"

    Yes I do, but I feel that you may have missed mine TheWombat! :D I just get the feeling that Lucasfilm isn't taking this venture too seriously compared to what they could be doing. It is STAR WARS for goodness sakes, why can't we get something on a better level of animated quality? I asked the same thing with DROIDS and EWOKS back in 1985. That animation was rather low grade, but now with CLONE WARS we are getting this simplistic stylized stuff and I just don't know as though I care for that too much! :(

    "There is nothing wrong with normal animation v/s computer animation. Simply a different media. I love cartoons"

    I am not debating the advantages of computer animation over hand drawn animation in this thread. Animatrix is hand drawn as well, with the exception of the Final Flight of The Osiris installment! When I say that I wish Lucasfilm would have taken the approach that the Wachowski Brothers are taking, I am referring more to the way in which they are releasing their material, as well as giving it a higher standard of animation quality versus the simplistic and unimpressive looking Samurai Jack. That doesn't mean CGI, but simply higher grade! That may be good for a comedy cartoon, but for Star Wars??? :( I mentioned the price tag of FFOTO earlier, but only to show the amount of effort that the creators of THE MATRIX franchise are willing to put into their animated companion pieces. Why isn't Lucasfilm willing to do the same? :confused: Who here wouldn't like to see Star Wars animation coming from the talented hands of Japanese animators???

    "Thats part of the reason that I think I'll prefer the Clone Wars approach, just because I don't have to walk to a lab and spend time downloading it, I can just turn on my TV. That then becomes a question of In Demand sort of things where I'm working on their schedual not mine. Still I conisider that a + for the clone war shorts"

    Well tpr, I would like the television approach much better if we were getting a few actual episodes instead of all these 2-3 minute shorts. I think the show will suffer from th
  11. TheWombat Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 9, 2002
    star 4
    I understand your concerns. Guess we'll all find out in the fall. :D
  12. weezer Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2001
    star 6
    Well tpr, I would like the television approach much better if we were getting a few actual episodes instead of all these 2-3 minute shorts. I think the show will suffer from this approach. The benefit of the Animatrix approach would have been a DVD that could be watched anytime you want! Also, it could tell more than one story, perhaps presenting us with series of Clone Wars events featuring different characters. But then again you risk higher EU-isms that way too!

    I guess I like the one story thing better than all of the little sub story approach of the Animatrix. I mean from what we know so far Clone Wars is going to basically follow Anakin and Obi with a few side stories here and there. Animatirx on the other hand doesn't follow any of the orginal cast and just makes up new ones. In this regard I think that the 2-3 minute thing is a strength not a weekness. Keep it short, keep it simple. That way you end up with a 1 hour DVD when all is said and done and not a 6 or 7 hr DVD when you are done. 1 hour 1 basic story.
  13. AdamBertocci Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 3, 2002
    star 7
    I'd prefer the Animatrix approach, but I am happy that we're getting the series at all! :D



    Rick McCallum loves you!
  14. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 10
    >>Animatirx on the other hand doesn't follow any of the orginal cast and just makes up new ones.<<

    Actually, Trinity appears in the recent Detective Story, and another short that will be on the DVD will be about a character from Reloaded.
  15. Darth Jamus Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2000
    star 4
    SomeRandomNerd posted the following statement in a different thread:

    I thought the Clone Wars cartoon was a third party production by the makers of Samurai Jack, who basically asked if they could make a Star Wars cartoon and got told "yes." Which would make it "written by third party liscenced writers without any real initial production from Lucasfilm other than a nod to Lucas stating he created SW."


    Is this true, or is Lucasfilm actually more heavily involved in the creation of the storyline and such? I commented earlier on my uncertainties concerning The Animatrix content, seeing that it was independent stories created by various artist given a free hand to do as they will. Is The Clone Wars going to actually go this route also????
  16. weezer Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2001
    star 6
    SomeRandomNerd posted the following statement in a different thread:


    I thought the Clone Wars cartoon was a third party production by the makers of Samurai Jack, who basically asked if they could make a Star Wars cartoon and got told "yes." Which would make it "written by third party liscenced writers without any real initial production from Lucasfilm other than a nod to Lucas stating he created SW."


    Is this true, or is Lucasfilm actually more heavily involved in the creation of the storyline and such? I commented earlier on my uncertainties concerning The Animatrix content, seeing that it was independent stories created by various artist given a free hand to do as they will. Is The Clone Wars going to actually go this route also????


    Well, from my understanding of the project thats a little bit true a little bit not. From what I understand it was LFL that first approached cartoon network about a clone war cartoon. Tartakovsky had been a vocal supporter of the idea and so cartoon network aproached him for the pitch. He then came up with the concept for the whole thing which he describes as "band of brothers meets SW". He got the go ahead and started working with LFL to create the story line. If there had been no LFL contribution it is unlikely that there would have been ties to other media forms.

    So he doesn't have "free reign" so to speak. At the same time though he isn't as restricted as some people seem to think. For example he couldn't kill of any major characters like Anakin, Padme, Mace etc.
  17. medleyoz Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2002
    star 4
    I have seen the 3 Animatrix episodes up on the web and I have to say they are rather impressive. The stories are all richly involved. eg The Second Renaissance part 1(part 2 is released on the net next month) is about the uprise of the machines against the humans and then how humans dealt with that. I won't spoil it for anyone just head here to download it.
    So I have to say that THe animatrix is going to be better than The Clone war cartoon series.
    Now if the CW series would have been full 25 min episodes thewn it would be a different situation.
  18. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

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    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 10
    >>I commented earlier on my uncertainties concerning The Animatrix content, seeing that it was independent stories created by various artist given a free hand to do as they will.<<

    Actually, all the Animatrix episodes were based on story outlines by the Wachowski (sp?) Bros., though a few of the episodes creators took thing sin a different direction, they all have the brother's approval, and at leats half of them are as intended by them.
  19. Darth Jamus Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2000
    star 4
    Weezer, thanks for the clarification on the origin of the CLONE WARS series and how much involvement Lucasfilm has in it! :D

    "I have seen the 3 Animatrix episodes up on the web and I have to say they are rather impressive. The stories are all richly involved. eg The Second Renaissance part 1(part 2 is released on the net next month) is about the uprise of the machines against the humans and then how humans dealt with that. I won't spoil it for anyone just head here to download it.
    So I have to say that THe animatrix is going to be better than The Clone war cartoon series.
    Now if the CW series would have been full 25 min episodes thewn it would be a different situation."


    Actually medleyoz, The Second Renaissance Part 1 and 2 are the ones I look forward to the most out of the whole ANIMATRIX series, seeing that they tie in more closely with the films than the other entries. :cool: As it stands now, I am inclined to agree with you concerning the episode length of the CLONE WARS :(, but I hesitate to actually claim that it is subpar to ANIMATRIX until we actually see the final product. I am glad that the first three web installments of the Wachowskis' movie based series impressed you so much, and I cannot wait to see them myself :cool:, but we haven't seen any of the Star Wars series yet other than a drawing featuring character designs! I think it is too early to draw any real conclusions, regardless of any "feelings" we have that could be proven right or wrong in time! ;)

    "Actually, all the Animatrix episodes were based on story outlines by the Wachowski (sp?) Bros., though a few of the episodes creators took things in a different direction, they all have the brother's approval, and at least half of them are as intended by them"

    From issue #705 of Entertainment Weekly:

    ...The Wachowskis provided two-to-six page story treatments to all of the shorts' directors. But the animators, though fans of THE MATRIX, initially balked at adapting someone else's work. "There have been a lot of ill-fated American-Japanese collaborations," says Arias (Michael Arias, an Animatrix producer). "No one was too eager right off the bat."

    Koji Morimoto, animation supervisor of 1988's AKIRA and director of an (ANIMATRIX) episode called Beyond, stated from the outset that he wanted creative control. "To make the best film possible, it had to come from inside myself," he says. The Wachowskis obliged him and several other directors.

    In the end, the five shorts not written by the Wachowskis expand on themes introduced in the movies, such as alternate routes of escape (World Record) and what computer bugs look like to humans living inside the Matrix (Beyond). The other four segments deviate substantially from the Wachowskis' initial story treatments. Shinichiro Watanabe, creator of the highly rated Cartoon Network series and current movie COWBOY BEBOP, feared the brothers would be upset by his revision to their Kid's Story. "It was almost a total change," he says of the short, in which a high schooler outmanuevers agents and teachers alike. "In the original story he runs away on foot, but I used a skateboard." He also added an eyebrow-raising ending in which the protagonist escapes the Matrix by jumping off the roof of his school. The Wachowskis were unperturbed by the changes, but the jarring finale may be one reason Kid's Story was pulled from the lineup of films on the Web (it will appear intact on the video/DVD).


    So actually The2ndQuest, five of the stories are completely original works by the animators, having ditched the Wachowski treatments altogether. [face_shocked] Further, big changes were made to the other four, but they (the Wachowski brothers) did not seem to mind handing the creative reigns over to others for the project. The complete originals are the ones that
  20. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

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    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 10
    I actually have that magazine, and that's what I was referring to when I said "though a few of the episodes creators took things in a different direction", sorry I wasn't clearer on that. I did forget about the mention of the others being changed though.
  21. Forcebewitya Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 7, 2002
    star 4
    "Animatirx on the other hand doesn't follow any of the orginal cast and just makes up new ones."

    Not just trinity, but also Neo who appears(just his voice played by Keanu Reeves) in the one with the kid and the computer (sorry I forgot the name) Anyway, The Animatrix episodes actually got the real actors voice talents involved, so I would hope that clone wars will do the same. My opinion on which is the better format, would definitly without a doubt be the Animatrix. I haven't seen any of them and will wait till they come out on June 3rd. Being an Anime fan and also liking the CG of FFOTO, I think it works better than the simplistic animation of the Clone Wars. And also I'm still not to thrilled about the 3 minutes (what are they thinking?!) So in the end I would have to say the Wachowskis made a better dicision then the all mighty George Lucas, but of course I haven't seen the Clone Wars yet so my mind could change.

    Forcebewitya!
  22. JediMasterGuff Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 18, 2002
    star 5
    I saw Final Flight of teh Osiris (which I must say Clone Wars will have a tough job beatin that) so I went out and bought the DVD, I was disappointed that FFOTO was the only CGI episode, because I'm not a big Anime fan, I was disappointed with it. So I think Clone Wars will be far better than Animatrix (despite the 3-minute thing) apart from FFOTO, which is unbeatable.
  23. First_Stage_Lensman Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Feb 23, 2003
    star 2
    Animatrix : I liked the 2-part back history [very I Robot - also very Dune, very Blade Runner, very Terminator very ...]the one about 'The Kid' [shades of 'The Wall' man!] and the last one. I liked the story about the malfunctioning Matrix-area where gravity seems not to work - the animation was a little too 'standard anime' for me. I LOVED the long end episode - finally some real science fiction! I HATED the all cgi one. Overall, the animation quality was ectremely high but I don't think I'd buy the dvd unless I saw it used for under $10 or something.

    Clone Wars : I think I'll like this more but I have to see it first. Samurai Jack was alright. I'm not into the whole retro-UPA animation thing going on. It's really beat to death now.

    If Lucasfilm is smart they'll put all of the CW cartoons on the EPIII DVD but they won't. I'm already pissed about that!!
  24. Darth_Zoo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 15, 2002
    star 4
    I've seen a two Animatrix shorts (one I liked, the other... not so much) and I would go with Clone Wars approach.

    I felt the Animatrix route was a bit gimmicky (ie. releasing one a month). Also it isn't as assesible as putting the shorts on a basic cable network. Not everyone has broadband, and is willing to pay $20 for the DVD just to check them out.
  25. Forcebewitya Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 7, 2002
    star 4
    well the reason that I like the Animatrix approach is this. One I like anime a lot! and two I hate the Samuri Jack style of animation. I will still like the cartoons though, I just wish they were in the anime or CG style like the animatrix used.

    Forcebewitya!
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