'Star Wars: The Clone Wars' Teases New Footage And The Return Of Ray Park At Star Wars Celebration

Fans attending Star Wars Celebration got a sneak peak of the new season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars with showrunner Dave Filoni and the cast on hand to share details.

While the announcement of the new season took place at last year's San Diego Comic-Con, the fans in attendance at Star Wars Celebration were the first to see clips and a trailer of the new season. In addition to the introduction, the trailer especially had the audience standing on their feet. It was so popular that it was shown twice on screen.  It's very electrifying, to say the least.

Initially, Dave Filoni was joined by cast members Ashley Eckstein, Dee Bradley Baker, and Sam Witwer to discuss the new season. Later on, other cast members came out on the stage, including Matt Lanter, Catherine Taber, Tom Kane, Matthew Wood, and James Arnold Taylor.

Clone Wars Saved

With the introduction of Disney+ later this year, fans will be able to see the ending of The Clone Wars as it was fully intended. Granted, there are some changes from the original story so as to not screw up anything that is currently canon.

Because the scale of the series is so huge, Dave Filoni himself never thought it was going to happen. "It's a very challenging show to make."

The cast then shared their memories of how they found out that a new season was coming.

"It freaked me out," said Dee Bradley Baker, the voice of the Clone Troopers among others. "I didn't think I'd do Clones again."

"I found out in an interesting way," said Ashley Eckstein.

It turns out that the voice of Ahsoka Tano was at Walt Disney World and waiting in line on a ride when she got a text from Dee Bradley Baker.  Their text chain, read aloud to much amazement, would reveal that Baker was a bit scared to announce the news himself.  All he would really tell her was "Clone Wars finale, 12 episodes soon."

As for why they're only doing 12 episodes – it's all the cast could handle with their current schedules.

Ray Park returns

Filoni shared the big news that Ray Park would be returning to the Star Wars franchise as Darth Maul.  It marks somewhat of a homecoming for the actor who first played Darth Maul in 1999's Star Wars: The Phantom Menace.  Sam Witwer is also returning to voice Maul, of course, but Park is performing motion-capture for the upcoming season.  This is one of the announcements that had the audience roaring with applause and anticipation of what's to come.

As for Maul's own look, Filoni's goal was to connect him with his look in Solo: A Star Wars Story.

"It's my favorite stuff that we've ever done with the character," Witwer said.

When the series initially concluded, it didn't quite get the ending that it needed.  Sam Witwer, who voiced Maul on both The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels, wanted to know what happened during the Siege of Mandalore. It sounds like Witwer may get his wish.

Bad Batch

One of the most intriguing aspects of the upcoming season is that we get to see the Bad Batch. This unit of Clone Troopers is otherwise known as Clone Force 99. Some background: the Kaminoans made their own attempt at making a "Captain America," if you will, via genetic experimentation. This results in Hunter, Wrecker, Tech, and Crosshair. While the story reel previously existed from Celebration Anaheim 2015, it's being retold during the new season. A clip featuring the Bad Batch was the first to be displayed and it left the crowd excited to see what plays out.

The look of the clones as a whole is being revamped thanks to the updates in animation technology since the last episode aired in 2014.  Some of the artwork shown during the panel reflects the updates – especially in the improvements on their faces.  Despite these updates, Filoni stressed that the new episodes will feel authentic to the series.

Ahsoka Tano

Ahsoka Tano is getting a new look this season, coming in the form of a jumpsuit. Ashley Eckstein is also excited to make the clothing a reality. A clip of Tano was shown where she's on a speeder bike in what looks like Coruscant and loses control when it begins to act up. Overall, Tano is in a very different place since leaving the Jedi Order – so much in that she doesn't wish to be referred to as commander upon a third clip being displayed on screen (featuring Anakin Skywalker).

Ahsoka Tano gets a new look in Star Wars: The Clone Wars

There are new characters living in the underworld that will be introduced this season, including characters named Trace and Raffa.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars will be back for new episodes on Disney+ this November.