Special effects are obviously an important component of the Star Wars films. How does the film push the state of the art in animation?
I think we just chose to look at things in a nonphotorealistic way, just to simplify some things and let traditional painting represented through texture carry a lot of the frame, even on the character models. I tried to relate our show to my experience with traditional 2-D animation—how the simple shapes and actions in drawing can create life so effectively, even when there is nothing photorealistic about it. Having artists paint every inch of the sets and characters maintains a human touch, which audiences seem to think is sometimes lacking in CG [computer graphics]. So even when our frames are still, I think that the painted texture on everything maintains a bit of the random life that we want to see. Imperfection is just more appealing.
How will the film tie into the new animated TV series?
The film is a stand-alone story, but the events in it set the stage for what is coming. The relationship between Anakin and Ahsoka will be a crucial story arc to the overall war, at least in how we see the Clone Wars develop from the Jedi's point of view. But the series goes beyond just that one story and looks at the war from many fronts.
Can we expect more animated Star Wars movies?
If you would like to see them I'd love to make them, but we'll have to see.