I got a chance to talk to Katie Lucas about her writing on The Clone Wars, specifically the new Nightsisters trilogy that we’re currently in the middle of. (You can see the latest clip from that here.) She’s written a number of episodes, but these seem to be the ones every wants to see.
And the name is no coincidence, she is indeed the daughter of the creator of Star Wars, George Lucas.
Here’s our brief chat:
Bryan Young: Though this isn’t your debut as a writer for Clone Wars, you’ve written some great episodes prior to this, but this is being hailed as a new era for an already great show, how do you feel about that?
Katie Lucas: I honestly think that this is an exciting new chapter for the series. It’s grown so much in the six years I’ve been on this show. The stories are more cohesive and filled with a depth that hasn’t been seen thus far. And the animation from here on out? Above and beyond.
BSR!: There’s obviously a lot of comparison being made between you and your father. What has he taught you as a writer?
KL: I don’t see a lot of similarities between my father and I, professionally, save for our passion for great film. He doesn’t consider himself a writer, he considers himself a director. I’m the definition of a writer, and we all know there’s always a bit of contention between writers and directors. We have different visions, but that doesn’t been we can’t collaborate. The most important thing he’s taught me as a writer, and as a person, is to always be true to my own vision, and to never compromise.
BSR!: As a writer, what’s your favorite movie and why?
KL: I don’t have just one. I love Secretary, Harold and Maude, Punch Drunk Love, and Frances, mostly because they’re about outsiders learning to embrace their inner freak, which is a subject close to my heart. The writing is heartbreaking, the direction is genius. The essence of a great film is honesty, and these films present universal truths in a unique and beautiful way. They’re life-changing.
BSR!: What made you decide to pursue writing? And how did you manage to decide to get into Clone Wars? I imagine it was something that wasn’t just handed to you.
KL: I went to college to become a poet and decided to take some film classes out of curiosity. When The Clone Wars was just getting started, my Dad suggested I try writing a screenplay for the show, just to see if I was interested in pursuing screenwriting. I wrote Jedi Crash, and the team loved it. Six years later, and I’m still here!
BY: What was it like seeing these episodes you wrote debuting on the big screen? What was the fan reaction like?
KL: Overall, it’s been an amazing experience. Seeing my work on the big screen with an excited audience for the first time was a real game changer. I am more determined than ever to get more of my work out there.
BY: This series of episodes seems to delve a lot into the Nightsisters and Count Dooku and, obviously, Savage Opress… A lot of people have been pretty vocal about how this rewrites other pieces of the expanded Star Wars universe… How do you respond to those kinds of questions? Are you even all that aware of the Star Wars universe outside of the films or the show?
KL: I am vaguely aware of the extended universe, though we try to keep as much of it out of the writer’s room as we can. We want all of our stories to be as fresh and as new as possible.
BY: Do you see yourself taking on any other Star Wars to write? Books, comics? The TV show?
KL: I won’t be writing any other Star Wars material after I finish on The Clone Wars. Star Wars is my father’s life work, not mine. I have my own stories to tell.
BY: Lastly, I just want to thank you and your father for all the work you guys have done to entertain the world. As a kid it meant a lot to me and it means a lot to me to be able to share it with my kids. And it inspired my career path, so Star Wars really does shape people…
KL: Thank you so much and continue being inspired!
The next episode of The Clone Wars airs on Friday night on Cartoon Network. Check local listings for a time.
And we’ll be on the look out for Katie’s non-Star Wars work and give you updates about that as we find them. He’s a great writer and I for one am excited to see what stories she has to tell outside the Star Wars universe.