The release date of Star Wars Visions, the new Star Wars anime, is getting closer. Disney has just released a trailer for the show which allows us a first glimpse of the animation. And one has to admit, it all looks good: lightsabers, epic Masters and apprentices, even strange alien species, all rendered in the beautiful art of various styles.
The trailer shows everything that we can expect from classic anime. Thanks to the fact that multiple studies have contributed to this project, we can see several types of traditional character design and animation. What immediately hits the eye is the heavily stylized depiction of Star Wars elements including some over-the-top lightsaber designs. Overall the blend of the genres looks great. The image of a Jedi drawing a lightsaber in a classic Samurai manner does not disturb, quite the opposite: it feels like something absolutely natural. And why shouldn’t it – after all, the Samurai were one of the underlying inspirations for the Jedi.
The trailer also presents the stories of Star Wars Visions in a sufficiently captivating manner. You can read more about the show and the summary of individual stories in one of my earlier articles here. Those who know what they are looking at can easily figure out which scenes belong to which of the stories. The trailer offers a glimpse of multiple lightsaber duels, peaceful forest settings that are on par with studio Ghibli films, the familiar scenery of Tatooine for “Tatooine Rhapsody”, or a fateful duel between siblings atop a Star Destroyer. And much more.
The trailer has been released in both Japanese and English-dubbed versions, here and here, respectively. Star Wars Visions was made with both language options in mind, featuring some classic stars in both iterations. The English one includes even former Star Wars voice actors like Andrew Kishino, or names like George Takei and Lucy Liu, and of course Temuera Morrison as Boba Fett.
I very rarely dare to give predictions beforehand, but it is hard to see how Star Wars Visions could not perform well. We have to wait for the full release to judge how the narration was handled in the individual stories. But the visual side of Visions is already making one think: why should not more Star Wars stories be handled like this?
Star Wars Visions will air on 22th September 2021 on Disney Plus.