There’s going to be a lot of Star Wars news the next couple of days, and this is one of the first items to come out of this four-day long Star Wars news orgy called Celebration. The event got underway in Orlando this morning, and although the news everyone wants to get is the long-awaited release of the trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi, there’s going to be a lot of smaller news too. To wit, a series of 16 shorts called Star Wars: Forces For Destiny which will give the spotlight to many of the franchise’s female heroes. 

Lucasfilm released the news about the project this morning, along with a short promotional video featuring interviews, conceptual art, and animatics. Among the 16 new short animated films will be adventures starring new live-action heroines Jyn Erso and Rey, who will be voiced by the original portrayers Felicity Jones and Daisy Ridley. There will also be shorts featuring the beloved Clone Wars and Rebels character Ahsoka Tano, as well as the original trilogy’s own Princess Leia.

“The movies tell these epic heroes’ journeys, big pieces of mythology,” Carrie Beck, VP of Lucasfilm Story and Animation and a producer of Forces of Destiny, told Yahoo Movies. “For this, we thought these stories could tell those moments of everyday heroism… the kind of stories that would be appropriate over two to three minutes.”

Among the stories will be “Beasts of Echo Base,” which is partially inspired by deleted scenes from The Empire Strikes Back of Wampas on the loose in the Rebel base. Rey’s story, meanwhile, is called “BB-8 Bandits”, and is about Rey trying to keep BB-8 safe from the greedy paws of Teedo. “BB-8 Bandits” was shown to attendees at Celebration, and will be the first short film to be released in the series.

“If you know anything about the Star Wars franchise, these stories are additive,” added Beck. “They tell you a piece you don’t already know and give you additional expression of some of your favorite characters.”

The short films will start airing on Disney‘s official YouTube channel starting sometime this summer. Afterward, they will be collected and aired together the Disney Channel sometime prior to the release of Star Wars: The Last Jedi this December.

We’ll have more news from Star Wars Celebration as it breaks…


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