TPM Animated Series

Discussion in 'The Phantom Menace' started by CeeJay, Apr 10, 2003.

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  1. CeeJay Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2000
    star 4
    I think everyone is aware of the upcoming animated series on the Cartoon Network that follows the Clone wars between ep2 & ep3 etc. I'm just wondering now if it would have ben a good idea to have done the same sort of thing to cover the ground work between TPM and AOTC covering Anakins training and his relationship with Obi Wan not to mention the dealings of Count Dooku, Jango Fett and the obvious encounters Palpatine has had influencing Anakin.

    Another thing I'm wondering is why after the stunning previews of the ANIMATRIX animated stories filling out the overall trilogy of the MATRIX, coupled with the fact that awesome CGI producers like PIXAR that were actually a division of Lucasfilm in their infancy and the many TV shows like Starship Troopers, MAX Steel etc, that something as grand and goundbreaking in terms of CGI as Star Wars associated with, do we have instead a very flat and basic styled 2D animated show being presented to us. Wouldn't you rather if it were to be done, that it be done using the very best Animation has to offer? Love it or hate it, the Final Fantsy movie looked stunning and the animated short they have produced for the ANIMATRIX DVD looks equally Stunning, far more impressive than the upcoming 2 minute Clone War presentation.
  2. SomeRandomNerd Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 20, 1999
    star 4
    >>>Wouldn't you rather if it were to be done, that it be done using the very best Animation has to offer?

    I can't imagine a TV series spending the same on the animation as TPM and AOTC did; anything even trying to come close would probably fall waaaay short...

    Solution: Don't try.
    :)
  3. Ultimate Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 14, 2000
    star 3
    Teachnially it is a CG show. They do the animation on a computer and do 3D cel shading, backgrounds and stuff like that. But it isn't in the sense that it has the CG cartoon look like FF, and they don't try and make things look "realistic".

    I'm glad they're doing it this way as an animated series. I mean sure a high class CG show could be good (although my opinion of most CG shows has been very very low, and I really didn't like the Osiris short). But it be at such a lower quality than the films and the CG actors wouldn't quite look like the real actors, that it just seems like a waste to use all that time and money (which would cost considerably more and take much longer) to make something that would aspire to the look of the films using similar technology without coming close. Not to mention that for most of the guys around Lucasfilm, doing "animated show level" CG would be a massive step down, quality wise, from what they're used to producing. I just prefer them going the other way with a highly detailed and stylized traditional cartoon. I just don't see the point in trying to do an animated show as a purely CG vehincle, just for the sake of doing it in CG when you could probably do a more dynamic version with traditional animation.

    And yes, depending on what was covered a TPM show could be cool.
  4. Latorski Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 14, 2002
    star 4
    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.

    A TPM cartoon might be cool at this stage, now that it can't spoil any AOTC surprises. Perhaps episodes with Palpatine turning Dooku, Obi-Wan training Anakin, Shmi meeting Cleig and then being kidnapped, Dooku recruiting Jango, etc.
  5. CeeJay Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2000
    star 4
    SomeRandomNerd - Maybe you're taking me a little too literally when I say "The best that Animation has to offer" but simply put, the Clone Wars cartoons are going to be little more than 2-3 minutes in length and only 20 episodes I believe. Even if Lucasfilm used their very best CGI it would hardly be a drain on production but that isn't necessary considering what many other CGI shows have managed to produce entire 20 minute/ 13 episode seasons of. As for your "Don't Try" comment, well that's too negative an attitude to take for people whose job it is to deliver the best in entertainment, but thanks for the comments anyway.

    Ultimate - I can respect the Samurai Jack style of Animation but I hardly find it complimentary to what could be achieved with CGI animated shows. Understandably you do not like the Last Flight of the Osiris or the type of CGI animation they employ, but you must understand that many do including the technicians at ILM who when they first saw Final Fantasy the Movie, were utterly blown away by the quality of the CGI and visual narrative. For me THAT type of techique would more suit a 20 part, 3 minute show visualising the impact of the Clone Wars than the Samurai Jack style of character rendering. There's nothing wrong with being simplistic, I dearly love the last Batman Animated series that WB did which refined the animation of the earlier shows to a point of sheer beauty. But as a companion piece to my PT and OT I feel that the Clone War show would look a lot better if done as a realistic CGI based show such as Starship Troopers and Max Steel.

    Latorski - Not a fan of the MATRIX? Wow, I guess you'll find this "Year of the MATRIX" annoying then, because it'd gonna be an absolute ROMP once everything kicks off next month. Personally I can't wait, the MATRIX Blew me away the first time with it's stylish direction and intriguing concept, the trailers for the other two films have wet my appetite to no end and the ANIMATRIX DVD release in between is the kind of quality bonus one can only dream of as a fan.
  6. RogueSith Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 24, 2001
    star 3
    Uh... haven't you heard? People only liked the Matrix because GL didn't make it. And it only won the Oscar because they were voting against Lucas. Come on, man, keep up with the times.



    8-}
  7. -_-_-_-_-_- Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Apr 28, 2002
    star 6
    Even though I thuroughly enjoy TPM, I don't think it would have worked.
  8. Latorski Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 14, 2002
    star 4
    Latorski - Not a fan of the MATRIX? Wow, I guess you'll find this "Year of the MATRIX" annoying then, because it'd gonna be an absolute ROMP once everything kicks off next month. Personally I can't wait, the MATRIX Blew me away the first time with it's stylish direction and intriguing concept, the trailers for the other two films have wet my appetite to no end and the ANIMATRIX DVD release in between is the kind of quality bonus one can only dream of as a fan.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm not anti-Matrix (like some people on this site) and will certainly watch both sequels. I hope they're great and blow me away. I liked the 1st one when I saw it in the theater but after seeing it again recently, it just didn't do as much for me. I'd have to say I'm neutral to it now.

    From everything I've heard about the Animatrix, though, it has greatly enhanced Matrix fans' enjoyment of the series and added much excitement to the upcoming sequels.
    As 3 years is a long time between films for today's fickle audiences, I think AOTC could have used some extra built-up (even though it did very well financially) and a pre-TPM cartoon or one set between TPM and AOTC could have done that. (ANH was re-released a few months before ESB premiered, and both ANH and ESB were re-released before ROTJ premiered.)

    As I mentioned in my previous post, I think something set between TPM and AOTC would be a lot of fun, maybe for Winter 2004, six months before EpIII... I'll keep dreaming. Animation style is a matter of personal taste and I like the highly visual style of Samurai Jack.
  9. CeeJay Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2000
    star 4
    RogueSith - I think you're understaing the MATRIX way too much by suggesting people only preferred it to TPM just to get at Lucas. For one, the MATRIX came out before TPM and wowed many who had not anticipated it's arrival including myself. All I had ever seen of MATRIX before seeing the film was a picture in a Magazine showing Neo and Agent Smith fighting in mid-air and I thought it was going to be as bollocks as Johnny Nemonic. ...BOY was I mistaken! The Dissapointment with TPM many found only gave the makers of the MATRIX even more merit due to it's originality in the use of combining Story with FX and for many seasoned SW fans it was simply a non-kiddiefied or dumbed down sci-fi flick as opposed to what they where served up with TPM ala Jar Jar and the Yippieee-kid! Did the Matrix deserve to win the OSCAR? Yes, simply because it's effects were not only more essential to its story telling but even though they were less polished as TPM on a whole, they nevertheless where far more imaginative and better composed than anything ILM had to offer which for most wasn't anything really new! If you can get an award for sheer mass of FX shots then ILM would get the golden guy everytime, but it's not about numbers, it's about effective use of ones resources.

    Latorski - I like the style of Samurai Jack, I just don't think it's anyway as suited to telling a SW story to accompany the films as what could be achieved with a full blown realistic CGI production such as Final Fantasy, Max Steel or the Starship Troopers TV series. If the Clone War serires was just another SW cartoon tenuously linked to the actual trilogy such as the old Ewok and DROIDS animate tv series, then I wouldn't give a flying-monkeys what it looked like because those shows have squat to do with events that shape the films. Clone wars is being produced as an essential part of the PT, it's something you'd have to watch in order to get the complete vision of events that lead up to Ep3 so to watch Live action Ep1, live action Ep2 and then follow up with Samurai Jack type cartoon before returning to live action Ep3 just kinda kills it for me. I just think Lucas isn't doing the best he could do with a peach of an oppotunity to produce something really special as an addition to the PT.
  10. Darth Jamus Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2000
    star 4
    I am in complete agreeance with you on this CeeJay. The style animation being used for the Clone Wars is simply inadequate and lacking. It shows that Lucasfilm just isn't interested in presenting us with anything of actual real quality. This show could have stood to be taken more seriously and be presented in a better manner. I know people like Samurai Jack, but I for one am sick of all this simplistic cheap looking animation being pumped out these days. What ever happened to taking the loving time to actually craft something of beauty as composed to this quick cheap artistic approach that is so popular today. The Wachowski's have the sense to see that with their Animatrix and the quality difference is already showing.

    I hated Final Fantasy with a passion, finding it to be one of the worst movies that I paid money for in years, but the effects were beautiful! I don't think Clone Wars needs all of that, but I do think more time and care should be poured into this new show than what we are getting! As for a series bridging TPM amd AOTC, I would love it. It would be so great to see the story of how Dooku discovers Sidious (or vice-versa), Anakin's training, Nute's trials, Palpatine friendship with Ani, etc.! Too bad it will never happen, or if it did we would get it done in the style of The Wild Thorneberry's Movie! [face_laugh] [face_laugh] [face_laugh]

    For anyone interested, check out my thread in the Small Screen forum [link=http://boards.theforce.net/message.asp?topic=11286302&start=11291571]Clone Wars or Animatrix...Which Approach Do You Prefer?[/link]




  11. Darth-Stryphe Former Mod and City Rep

    Member Since:
    Apr 24, 2001
    star 6
    I can't imagine a TV series spending the same on the animation as TPM and AOTC did; anything even trying to come close would probably fall waaaay short...

    Solution: Don't try.


    Ditto.
  12. CeeJay Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2000
    star 4
    Darth-Stryphe - That's a great view to have on things - don't try! Thank god though people do try to better things and strive to surpass previous achievments otherwise we wouldn't have any SW films in the first place! And once again, the CGI animation doesn't have to be of the SAME QUALITY as AOTC jsut good as in the Starship Troopers show or Max Steel. Anything will be better than Dexters Lab with Lightsabres and a Twilek!
  13. Punisher Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 20, 1998
    star 4
    Let me say that a TPM cartoon done with CG technology would be cool, I'd probably be more interested in the Clone War cartoon if the style was different (and had cable).

    Understand that a lot of what the Clone War cartoon is dealing with (as far as we know) is being told in the SW comics. Many of the same characters are being used!
    Some of the issues of Jango Fett's origin (and meeting with Dooku), Obi-Wan/Anakin's pre AOTC adventures have been dealt with in the comics.
    Honestly, only the Jango Fett series was somewhat worth the effort.

    Ironically, I don't think Lucas can afford to have a cartoon/T.V. series that has a better story than the movies!
    Imagine the negative backlash AOTC would have gotten if a TPM cartoon was better from fans?
    What if the cartoon fleshed out the characters, but Lucas still ignored that or even discounted it in the movies because it's EU?

    Imagine what will happen if the Clone Wars cartoon is better than AOTC?
    (BTW, the Clone War comics haven't done anything that amazing so far storywise, I wouldn't expect much in the couple minutes of cartoons.)

    I'm not bashing computer animation, I loved Shrek and Final Fantasy. I don't think they are a "step down" from Jar Jar or digital doubles.
    I realize that animation is animation, only the finishing style is different... ILM and Pixar are still dealing with the same issues only to different degrees and for different end purposes.
  14. SomeRandomNerd Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 20, 1999
    star 4
    [bCeeJay[/b]

    >>>>Maybe you're taking me a little too literally when I say "The best that Animation has to offer" but simply put, the Clone Wars cartoons are going to be little more than 2-3 minutes in length and only 20 episodes I believe. Even if Lucasfilm used their very best CGI it would hardly be a drain on production but that isn't necessary considering what many other CGI shows have managed to produce entire 20 minute/ 13 episode seasons of.

    The time isn't much of an issue though- if you've got one CG environment, it takes pretty much the same amount of time to create if it's for a 5 second shot as if it's for a 10 minute scene. It's the same as models- once you've made the model, you can spin it around, move it past a camera, film it several times so it looks like there's more etc. etc.

    To make, say, 20 environments (ie. one per episode) that are different to, but as good as the one we saw at the end of AOTC, would take 20 times longer.

    >>>As for your "Don't Try" comment, well that's too negative an attitude to take for people whose job it is to deliver the best in entertainment, but thanks for the comments anyway.

    Well, I just don't see the point in trying to make a series of kids filler cartoons (presumably with the appropriate budget) into something that simply cannot not live up to what we've seen in the films. I don't think these cartoons are aimed as "a companion piece to your PT and OT" any more than the Droids cartoons or Holiday Special were a companion piece to the OT.

    Star Wars has already delivered the CGI spectacle that you are talking about in the prequels (and no doubt will do it again.) Why do you think it should try to deliver a scaled down version again, that couldn't possibly live up to the standards it's already set?
  15. CeeJay Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2000
    star 4
    SomeRandomNerd - Yes the Clone War cartoon is an accompanying piece to events that will be in Episode 3 which is why they use all the main characters unlike the animated Droids or Ewoks cartoon! I don't know what you're on about with the "Time" issue either, CGI takes time, doing something such as the Clone war would mean lots of motiuon capture sessions for every episode and hundred of compossiting and composing massive amounts of characters, settings and props. Naturally it can be done and my point is that it needent be to the level of rendering such as painstakingly done for the movies. That higher level of rendering of composed scenes does take longer as the CGI has to hold up for a huge projected image, the quality for something generated for a basic high resolution TV set doesn't require such meticulous attention to detail. And why does this have to be a "kids" filler cartoon, that's the whole problem with this production, it's "dumbed down " to basics like the plot of TPM. No attempt to actually produce something great and ambitious. Ambition and the striving for the best in production is what made the original two SW films great, everything else afterwards including this cartoon series has been Painting-by-numbers in comparisson!
  16. SomeRandomNerd Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 20, 1999
    star 4
    >>>Yes the Clone War cartoon is an accompanying piece to events that will be in Episode 3 which is why they use all the main characters unlike the animated Droids or Ewoks cartoon!

    So I suppose that makes Splinter of the Minds Eye an accompanying piece to the original trilogy, seeing as it used the same characters etc? Along with Shadows of the Empire and the rest of the [word deleted before Quix could get to it] that passes for Star Wars to some people?

    Nah, it's EU.

    >>>Ambition and the striving for the best in production is what made the original two SW films great, everything else afterwards including this cartoon series has been Painting-by-numbers in comparisson!

    Ambition and striving for the best is what made the Star Wars saga great. The EU is, and has been since the original "Star Wars" novelisation came out before the film, just a synergetic cash in following the trend that all EU has followed; sub standard novels and (with one or two noteable exceptions) sub standard games.
    [/rant]

    I think I'm arguing off topic here. Obviously, I'd love to see an animated companion piece to the prequels, done to the level of quality of the films.

    However, I don't think it's an idea that is realistic, simply because of the possible budget for a CGI TV series, with (presumably) different environments for 2 minutes at a time (CGI isn't quick or cheap- ever see a CGI artist who didn't look well fed? ;))

    So I don't think the Clone Wars cartoon is even attempting that task- and rightly so, because it's so unrealistic as to be unfeasible. (As well as clearly not the intention of the guys who set out to make it.)

    I don't really understand what you're suggesting though. Do you mean a "filler" series like the Clone Wars cartoon but in "proper" CGI, or something more like a "normal" series (ie. half hour episodes etc.)
  17. hoth-nudist Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Dec 5, 2000
    star 3
    I dont think it should have been made in the first place. The clone wars should have started in TPM, peaked in AOTC and ending with EP3.
  18. doggans Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2002
    star 5
    So...basically the proposal is an animated series based on the Jedi Quest books?
  19. Porkins_Dietician Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 16, 2002
    star 1
    Looks like you created this thread as a way to bash the new clone cartoons not to ask about any TPM animated series. Reading through it I did find some things to comment on.

    The matrix was an ok film for me I certainly would argue that a bullet trail and a little stop motion rotation during a fight doesn't in the least impress me. Is this groundbreaking enough to deserve an award? Just goes to show how poor the academy is these days. That is about all that was revolutionary in that film. And not that it was brought up but I found that big eyed needing a sandwich fool in LOTR TTT to be just as annoying as anything Jar Jar did.

    On to the clone war cartoon what you propose would not prevent the bashing this one is getting. I can hear your new thread now, the new clone cartoon just doesn't look right they could have put more effort into the cgi to make it more like the movie.

    On to what this thread is about sure I would like to see more star wars as long as the story is good. Its the story that makes the toon not the animation. If that were the case then not so many would bash TPM it looks fantastic no doubt most people have issue with the story.
  20. CeeJay Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2000
    star 4
    SomeRandomNerd - The Clone War is as Shadows of the Empire before it, an official Lucasfilm production to co-exist as cannon for the current timeline (no matter how much people hate it). Books written by third party liscenced writers without any real initial production from Lucasfilm other than a nod to Lucas starting he created SW are EU. The Clone War comprises of characters and situations that are officially sanctioned and devised by Lucas and Lucasfilm to thread the story he can't tell in the last film through certain current Dark horse comics and this very cartoon! Consider it whatever you want but it is cannon! As for your ambithion remark, you can rattle on about the EU being a cash-in until the cows come home, I don't care much for anything written after the tripe called ROTJ.

    Back to the real question, what I was thinking is more of a 12/13 part 10 minute short in the style of the old Republican series such as Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers and Rocketman etc. These things are what originally inspired GL to make SW hence such things such as the opening crawl, certain sound fx and the famous wipes between scenes. A CGI animated series like this would look great with careful reprduction of the main characters through digital scanning etc. Think of the stunnig battles and ligtsabre fights and at the end of every episode a cliffhanger just like in the old 1930's shows. If Lucasfilm could do about two or three of these 12 part series covering Anakins growth to the point we see him in AOTC, it would be a marvelous addition to the SW saga.

    doggans - I'm not familiar with the Jedi Quest series, I'm guessing its typical EU stuff that doesn't cover the stuff GL suprised everyone else with in AOTC such as the rise of Count Doku and the sepratists or the fact that Padme became a senator and Jar Jar too? No, I would like this series to cover the plotlines skipped between TPM and AOTC, not a reproduction of some previous book guessing at what GL has prepped for the next SW film.

    Porkins_Dietician - Looks like you were mistaken and proceeded from false assumtions. I posed two questions at the beginning of this thread and got most replies about the second one, that's not my fault so don't assume anything because when you ASSUME you make an ASS out of U and ME. ;) And just because the story is extremely important which I agree on, that doesn't mean the astetethics can be skimped on, it's a question of what you feel would compliment the look of the existeing films. For me its CGI, to others the Samurai Jack think is fine, that's why we're here to weigh it up and find out what ideas everyone has on what it could/should look like.
  21. SomeRandomNerd Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 20, 1999
    star 4
    >>>>The Clone War is as Shadows of the Empire before it, an official Lucasfilm production to co-exist as cannon for the current timeline (no matter how much people hate it). Books written by third party liscenced writers without any real initial production from Lucasfilm other than a nod to Lucas starting he created SW are EU. The Clone War comprises of characters and situations that are officially sanctioned and devised by Lucas and Lucasfilm to thread the story he can't tell in the last film through certain current Dark horse comics and this very cartoon! Consider it whatever you want but it is cannon!

    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."

    Either way, it certainly isn't "canon", any more than Truce at Bakura, Splinter of the Minds Eye, or the Clone Wars PS2 game. Not in my Star Wars anyway...

    Lucas has publically stated that he doesn't even read the offshoot publications, let alone write any of it. In his words on Barry Norman's film night, "it's not my story."
  22. CeeJay Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2000
    star 4
    You know what? I couldn't care less about being "Cannon" some of the SW books I read set in the PT are better than the films themselves so whether they're cannon or not doesn't make a difference to me at all. I just want a good show I can watch in the end of the day and one that makes the most of it's potential. I have no doubt that the makers of Samurai Jack can spin out a decent Star Wars show, they've proven themselves already quite competant of that. I just wish it was done in another style, namely the type of CGI used in Max Steel and Starship Troopers. My preference! Especially after seeing the previews for the ANIMATRIX shorts. To be honest, the more I think about it, maybe they purposely don't want to make any of these as well as they can be, simply because they stand a good chance of putting the actual PT films to shame! ;)
  23. MyEternalRest Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 24, 2002
    star 2
    "I think everyone is aware of the upcoming animated series on the Cartoon Network that follows the Clone wars between ep2 & ep3 etc. I'm just wondering now if it would have ben a good idea to have done the same sort of thing to cover the ground work between TPM and AOTC covering Anakins training and his relationship with Obi Wan not to mention the dealings of Count Dooku, Jango Fett and the obvious encounters Palpatine has had influencing Anakin."


    It could be called The Wonder Years. ;)
  24. CeeJay Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2000
    star 4
    Hopefully better than the current "Blunder Years" we've had to watch over the last two films! :p
  25. Gwas Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 13, 2000
    star 2
    GeeJay - I'm with you on this one. Whilst I'm intrigued by the shorts we're going to get, I too would have greatly preferred to see a CGI show.

    ILM have created a second unit (for want of a better term) to create CGI cut scenes for Lucasart's SW games. The first game to exhibit their work was Bounty Hunter which contains some 20ish minutes of CGI that took just a few weeks to put together. The overall feel of these scenes is great. The lighting, wipes, shot composition etc. is all very "Star Wars" and while some of the human kinetics (and lip sync) are far from perfect, it doesn't detract from the enjoyment I get from watching them one bit.

    Do they stand up to the CGI work in the films?

    No, and they don't need to.

    Something along these lines would've been perfect for the Clone Wars shorts. If you haven't seen these scenes, check them out. There are a couple on the Lucasarts site to download if you're interested.
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