Lucasfilm’s unique anthology returns May 4 with nine new shorts created by an international line-up of award-winning filmmakers and animation studios, including Cartoon Saloon, Aardman, and Triggerfish, harnessing different animation styles, each offering a new take on the mythos of ‘Star Wars.’
Disney+ and Lucasfilm have announced Star Wars: Visions Volume 2, the animated anthology series – “It’s Star Wars like you’ve never seen before. No, really.” The new set of films picks up where the popular Emmy Award-nominated Star Wars: Visions Volume 1 left off, promising to “continue to push the boundaries of Star Wars storytelling.” Featuring nine new shorts from nine studios, the films harness animation styles from various artists, cultures, and countries, offering a new perspective on the storied mythos of Star Wars, hitting the streamer May 4.
An international roster of animation studios contributed to Volume 2, including El Guiri (Spain); Cartoon Saloon (Ireland); Punkrobot (Chile); Aardman (United Kingdom); Studio Mir (South Korea); Studio La Cachette (France); 88 Pictures (India); D'art Shtajio (Japan); and Triggerfish (South Africa). D’Art Shtajio’s short was created in collaboration with Lucasfilm Ltd. (United States).
“The reaction to the first volume of Star Wars: Visions blew us away,” shared James Waugh, Star Wars: Visions executive producer and Senior Vice President Franchise Content & Strategy at Lucasfilm. “We were delighted that this project inspired and resonated with so many people. We always saw Star Wars: Visions as a framework for celebratory expressions of the franchise from some of the best creators working today. Animation is in a global renaissance, and we’re constantly staggered by the amount of creativity pushing the medium forward. With Volume 1, the imaginative minds of Japan’s anime industry were on full display. With Volume 2, we expanded our canvas to take audiences on a global tour of some of the most talented creators from around the world. We’re so proud to be able to reveal the line-up of studios we’ve assembled. Every short is incredible, full of heart, scope, imagination, and the values that make stories distinctly Star Wars — all while opening up bold new ways of seeing what a ‘Star Wars’ story can be.”
Waugh executive produces Star Wars: Visions Volume 2 along with Jacqui Lopez and Josh Rimes.
Here’s a rundown of the shorts and filmmakers:
Title: “Sith” - Studio: El Guiri
Rodrigo Blaas - writer/director
The Emmy Award-winning director is a 20+ year veteran of animation. After co-founding Stromboli Animation in 1997, Blaas joined Blue Sky Studios in 2000, where he worked on the animated feature film Ice Age. He subsequently transitioned to Pixar Animation Studios, where he worked on several hit animated features, including Finding Nemo (2003); The Incredibles (2004); Ratatouille (2007); and Wall-E (2008) and on the Oscar-nominated short film La Luna (2011). He recently partnered with Guillermo del Toro to develop the award-winning series Trollhunters, serving as creative director for Mikros Animation Paris. In 2021, he created El Guiri Studios in Madrid with his partner, Cecile Hokes. He also wrote and directed the 2009 award-winning short film Alma.
Title: “Screecher’s Reach” - Studio: Cartoon Saloon
Paul Young – Director
The Cartoon Saloon co-founder and IFTA winner and Oscar, Emmy, and BAFTA nominee produced the animated features My Father’s Dragon; WolfWalkers; The Secret of Kells; Song of the Sea; and The Breadwinner as well as award-winning TV series including “Puffin Rock, Dorg Van Dango, and Viking Skool.
Title: “In the Stars” - Studio: Punkrobot
Gabriel Osorio – writer/director
The Oscar-winning director, and founder of Punkrobot Studio, studied Fine Arts at Universidad de Chile and later specialized in 3D animation. Since 2008, he has directed projects for children’s television, including Flipos, Muelin y Perlita, and Soccer Girls. In 2016, his short film Bear Story became the first Latin American project to win an Oscar in the animated short category.
Title: “I Am Your Mother” - Studio: Aardman
Magdalena Osinska - director
The award-winning director began her tenure at Aardman eight years ago. She has directed stop-motion, CGI, 2D, and live-action commercials, including Wallace & Gromit’s The Great Sofa Caper and Share the Orange. In addition, Osinska directed the development of the children’s series Joyets. Her directorial credits include Spirits of the Piano and Zbigniev’s Cupboard. She graduated from the National Film and Television School in Beaconsfield, UK, the Polish Film School in Lodz, and Art College in Warsaw. Osinska is currently developing the feature film Jasia, based on her grandmother’s memories of WWII Poland.
Title: “Journey to the Dark Head” - Studio: Studio Mir
Hyeong Geun Park - director
After joining the Korean animation industry in 2017, Park directed animation for dozens of cinematic game trailers. He has since expanded into animated series, working on projects including Dota: Dragon’s Blood: Book 3 (2022) and Lookism (2022). Journey to the Dark Head is the first title he executive produced from start to finish.
Title: “The Spy Dancer” - Studio: Studio La Cachette
Julien Chheng – writer/director
The CEO and co-founder of Emmy Award-winning French animation Studio La Cachette, he was trained in visual development at Disney and worked as a character animator on 2D animated features The Rabbi’s Cat, Mune, and Academy Award-nominated Ernest and Celestine. In 2021, he won an Emmy Award as animation executive producer of Genndy Tartakovsky’s Primal, for which he also served as animation supervisor. In 2022, Chheng directed, with Jean-Christophe Roger, the Cesar-nominated feature Ernest and Celestine: A Trip to Gibberitia.
Title: “The Bandits of Golak” - Studio: 88 Pictures
Ishan Shukla - director
Beginning his career as a CG artist in Singapore, he spent more than a decade spearheading projects ranging from TV commercials to series and music videos. Long listed for the Academy Awards, Shukla’s 2016 animated short Schirkoa received multiple awards and played at 120 international festivals, including SIGGRAPH Asia, where it was named Best in Show. He has since set up his own studio to work on adult-oriented animated feature films, including a feature-length version of Schirkoa, set to hit festivals in Summer 2023.
Title: “The Pit” - Studios: D’art Shtajio and Lucasfilm Ltd.
LeAndre Thomas – writer/director/executive producer
Justin Ridge – co-producer
Oakland-based Thomas’ most recent film won Best Director at the Pasadena International Film Festival. In addition to his independent films, Thomas is a part of the franchise studio team at Lucasfilm Ltd., where he has worked for more than 11 years. His recent credits include Light & Magic, The Mandalorian, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Star Wars: Tales of the Jedi.
Ridge executive produced the Emmy-nominated series Star Wars Resistance. His credits also include Star Wars Rebels; Storks; The Cleveland Show; Star Wars: The Clone Wars; and Avatar: The Last Airbender.
Title: “Aau’s Song” - Studio: Triggerfish
Nadia Darries and Daniel Clarke – writers/directors
Director, animator, and co-founder of Goon Valley Animation, Darries hails from the Cape Flats in South Africa. Since 2015 she has worked on high-end animated film and motion design as an animator, project manager, creative director, and director. At Triggerfish Animation Studios, she has worked on the award-winning BBC films Stick Man, Revolting Rhymes, and Highway Rat.
Clarke is a Cape Town-based director and artist working in animation, film, and illustration. He started his animation career in 2008 at Triggerfish Animation Studios, serving as production designer, art director, and director on the feature film Khumba, BBC’s Stick Man, and The Snail and the Whale. In 2018, along with James Clarke and Daniel Snaddon, he completed the graphic novel “Kariba.”
Star Wars: Visions Volume 2 streams exclusively on Disney+ beginning May 4, 2023.