The wait is just about over for Star Wars Forces of Destiny, an original series of animated shorts that will showcase the untold stories of Rey, Jyn Erso, Princess Leia, Sabine Wren, Padmè Amidala, Ahsoka Tano and more; Daisy Ridley, Felicity Jones, Tiya Sircar, Ashley Eckstein and Lupita Nyong’o will reprise their famous roles. It was announced earlier today that the series will make its debut on July 3rd on Disney’s YouTube channel before arriving on the Disney Channel itself July 9th.
Recently, I had a chance to chat with Star Wars Forces of Destiny writer Jennifer Muro about her experience crafting the story of the female-driven series and getting the chance to let the ladies of Star Wars lead for a change. Muro clarified just where the series fits in Star Wars canon and made a great case for why fans should most definitely tune in for each episode. Plus, Muro shared updates on her other ongoing and upcoming projects that you should be keeping an eye out for!
Before we get into Muro’s experience on Star Wars Forces of Destiny, be sure to check out the newly released trailer below:
‘Star Wars: Forces of Destiny’ lets the ladies take over for a change. How does the series’ message jibe with your own ideology?
Jennifer Muro: It jibes very well because I definitely like to write female-driven stuff. I’ve been doing this a long time and have two other female-driven series that are also in development. It’s the perfect opportunity to do this for Star Wars—which is just a dream come true—for those characters and to really just stand out, all together in one place, which has never been done.
It’s about time! It’s been coming and I’ve been pitching this kind of thing since 2012, so I was a little ahead before Frozen happened and before this, so I’ve been pushing this for a long time. Everyone’s starting to catch up. I’m glad I’m here now, a part of it; I’m glad I didn’t miss the curve. I think it fits perfectly and it’s about time.
How much of your writing was informed by the existing performances of the actors, and how much was informed by your own experiences?
Muro: Having all of their performances absolutely helped. I knew their voices. That really, really helped. Loving superheroes as a kid, and Wonder Woman, and Linda Carter, and Xena, and Buffy, which is a huge influence, all of the kinds of humor and adventure that I liked, it all helped. It absolutely helped. But obviously you want to write in the voice of the character as much as you can, so their performances made all the difference.
How much of the story was outlined by Lucasfilm executives versus how much original content were you able to bring?
Muro: We all break story together and Lucasfilm’s story group knows what they’re doing. They know their property really well. We come up with thoughts, ideas, timelines, and then I pitch some concepts, and we kind of break it and work together on it. It was very, obviously, collaborative. They were indispensible.
Since you’re the sole writer on this project, did you have a favorite character to write for?
Muro: Yeah, I don’t know if it’s announced yet, but the one who is announced I can say is definitely Leia. Leia, the original trilogy, was a dream come true; to write for a moment in Return of the Jedi and right before Empire Strikes Back was trippy, to say the least.
Does this series connect in any way to the TV and cinematic universes, or are they standalone adventures?
Muro: They’re just unseen moments we haven’t seen before, whether they be from [Star Wars] Rebels, or the original trilogy, or from [Star Wars]: The Force Awakens. It’s kind of like, they’re independent moments that were unseen before, small moments of heroism through time.
What can you tease for fans of Star Wars to encourage them to check out Forces of Destiny?
Muro: My gosh, they’re going to see things they’ve been curious about. It might answer some questions in those little moments when characters interact who we’ve never seen interact on screen before. They’re going to want to see this. I hate to use the word ‘canon’ but it’s definitely part of the universe now. If you’re a fan, no matter the age, you’re definitely going to want to take a look at it. They’re just fun, they’re not necessarily life-changing moments; they’re fun, they’re interesting, and the animation is going to be beautiful, it’s going to be gorgeous to see this in 2D which we haven’t seen in many, many years.