Star Wars: Droids TV Series Overview


Introduction

Star Wars: Droids – The Adventures of R2-D2 and C-3PO is a 1985 animated television series spin off from the original Star Wars trilogy.

It focuses on the exploits of droids R2-D2 and C-3PO between the events of Revenge of the Sith (2005) and A New Hope (1977).

The series was produced by Nelvana on behalf of Lucasfilm and broadcast on ABC with its sister series Star Wars: Ewoks (as part of The Ewoks and Droids Adventure Hour).

The series ran for one season of 13 half-hour episodes; an hour-long special broadcast in 1986 serves as the finale.

The opening theme, “Trouble Again”, was performed by Stewart Copeland of the Police.

During their adventures, the droids find themselves in the service of successive new masters, and encounter minor characters from the original trilogy such as Boba Fett and IG-88.

Outline

Droids follows the adventures of R2-D2 and C-3PO as they face off against gangsters, criminals, pirates, bounty hunters, the Galactic Empire and other threats. During their adventures, the droids find themselves in the service of successive new masters and in difficult situations as a result.

The series was retroactively placed four years after Revenge of the Sith and fifteen years before the events of A New Hope. In the latter film, C-3PO states that his and R2-D2’s “last master was Captain Antilles.” The droids are placed in Antilles’ care by Bail Organa at the end of Revenge of the Sith, creating an apparent continuity error. This is explained by the droids being accidentally separated from Antilles during the events of the animated series.

Over the course of the series, the droids team up with three different sets of masters. The series falls into three cycles or arcs; the droids usually run into their new masters at the beginning of each, and at the end are forced to leave. The Great Heep, a 48-minute television special following the series, is set before the final arc.

Cast

  • Main:
    • Anthony Daniels as C-3PO; Daniels also portrayed the character in the films.
    • R2-D2.
  • Recurring/Guest:
    • Don Francks as Jann Tosh, Boba Fett, Kybo Ren-Cha
    • Winston Rekert as Sise Fromm, Mungo Baobab.
    • Graeme Campbell as Proto One, Admiral Terrinald Screed, Lord Toda.
    • Peter MacNeill as Jord Dusat.
    • Taborah Johnson as Jessica Meade.
    • John Stocker as Vlix Oncard, Greej, Zatec-Cha and Sollag.
    • Rob Cowan as Thall Joben.
    • Dan Hennessey as Jord Dusat (ep4), Uncle Gundy, Jyn Obah, Vinga, Yorpa, Governor Koong, and Captain Cag.
    • Cree Summer as Princess Gerin.
    • Jan Austin as Auren Yomm.
    • Long John Baldry as the Great Heep.
    • Lesleh Donaldson as Kea Moll.
    • Chris Wiggins as Mon Julpa.
    • Stephen Ouimette as the narrator.
    • Winston Rekert as Tig Fromm.

Other guest stars include George Buza, Andrew Sabiston, Eric Peterson, Jamie Dick , Donny Burns, Alan Fawcett, Don McManus, and Gordon Masten.

Production

The series was produced by the Canadian company Nelvana for Lucasfilm. Several episodes were written by Star Wars sound designer Ben Burtt. Hanho Heung-Up Co. was the Korean company hired to animate the series.

In the UK, BBC Television bought rights to screen the series in its entirety between 1986 and 1991 as part of the Children’s BBC programming strand. The entire series was shown twice within this time (in 1986 and 1988 to coincide with the full release of the Star Wars trilogy as well as Droids on VHS). The Great Heep only made one showing in 1989 on BBC’s Going Live!, which was a Saturday morning children’s show – it was split into two parts over two weeks. Different episodes from different cycles were also screened across the five-year licence, with the Trigon cycle being shown in full in early 1991 on another Saturday morning children’s show called The 8:15 from Manchester.

The opening theme, “Trouble Again”, was performed by Stewart Copeland of the Police and written by him and Derek Holt.

The series was broadcast on ABC with its sister series Star Wars: Ewoks (as part of The Ewoks and Droids Adventure Hour). It debuted in 1985 as part of a fitness special hosted by Tony Danza and live-action versions of the droids. It ran for one season of 13 half-hour episodes; an hour-long special broadcast in 1986 serves as the finale. Droids and Ewoks were later shown in reruns on Sci-Fi Channel’s Cartoon Quest in 1996, although somewhat edited for time.

Trivia

  • In 1985, Kenner produced a toy line based on the series, including action figures, ship models, and other items.
    • Two action figures, Boba Fett and A-wing Pilot, were repackaged figures from the main Star Wars line.
    • The toy line was cancelled after the first group of 12 figures due to decreasing popularity with Star Wars.
  • In 1986, Marvel’s Star Comics imprint published a Star Wars: Droids comic series spun off from the cartoon.
    • The bi-monthly series ran for eight issues.
  • Along with Ewoks, the entire series has yet to be released on home video.

Star Wars: The Droids Series

Production & Filming Details

  • Developed By: Peter Sauder and Ben Burtt.
  • Director(s): Ken Stephenson and Raymond Jafelice.
  • Producer(s): Paul Dini, Miki Herman, Michael Hirsh, Peter Hudecki, Lenora Loubert, Peter Sauder, Clive Smith, Ben Burt, and George Lucas.
  • Writer(s): Richard Beban, Ben Burtt, Paul Dini, Sharman Divono, Joe Johnston, Gordon Kent, George Lucas, Michael Reaves, Peter Sauder, and Steve Wright.
  • Music: Patricia Cullen, David Greene, and David W. Shaw. Opening theme, ‘Trouble Again’, by Stewart Copeland.
  • Cinematography:
  • Editor(s): John Baktis, Richard Bond, Peter Goodale, Mac Holyoke, Stephen Hudecki, Chris Hutton, Gordon Kidd, Paul McGowan, Michele Moses, Sheila Murray, Philip Stilman, and Keith Traver.
  • Production: Nelvana, Lucasfilm, and 20th Century Fox Television.
  • Distributor(s): 20th Television.
  • Release Date: 07 September 1985 to 07 June 1986.
  • Running time: 22 minutes (per episode, approximate).
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

Video Link

 

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