Artwork courtesy of Joshua Stolte
Welcome back to the Star Wars HoloNet Digest, a weekly feature where I bring you a recap of the latest news from the world of Star Wars. Whether it’s a movie announcement or a noteworthy author interview, you’ll find it here. Let’s check the HoloNet and see what happened in the past two weeks.
The first big Star Wars television project from Disney will premiere on the same day of the year that The Clone Wars premiered. Lucasfilm announced yesterday that Star Wars Rebels will kick off with Spark of Rebellion, a one-hour TV movie, on Friday, October 3 at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT. Rebels will then air regular episodes on Disney XD every Monday night at 9:00 p.m. Spark of the Rebellion will be available early – September 29 – to Disney XD subscribers through the channel’s website and mobile apps. It will be available for digital purchase on Saturday, October 4 and on DVD on Tuesday, October 14.
To promote the series’ upcoming premiere, Lucasfilm is releasing Rebels shorts starring the members of the Ghost’s crew. The first two spots, “The Machine in the Ghost” and “Art Attack,” are available as of this writing, and you can watch them below.
If you can’t wait until October 3 to get your Star Wars Rebels fix, you can pick up a copy of Star Wars: A New Dawn by John Jackson Miller on September 2. The novel, published by Del Rey, is the first of the official canon novels and is set in the Dark Times, several years before Rebels. It’s the story of how Rebels characters and Ghost crew members Kanan and Hera first met.
In the time we were off, Lucasfilm announced the winner of the Star Wars: Force for Change contest: D.C. Barns of Denver, Colorado. Barns’ prize is a trip to London, a tour of the Episode VII set, and a cameo in the film.
All in all, Force for Change was a rousing success. The campaign raised $4.26 million for UNICEF, with Disney contributing an additional $1 million to the effort. J.J. Abrams posted one of his iconic notes on Twitter to thank fans for donating…and the note is resting in a very interesting-looking apparatus.
— Bad Robot (@bad_robot) August 11, 2014
Naturally, there has been a ton of speculation as to whose robot arm that is. We’re steering clear of the torrent of rumor reporting here in the HoloNet Digest, but if you really want to see what people are claiming and what aspects are being debunked, a quick search will turn up all that you seek.
Lastly, some good news from our “fan community desk.” First, Lucasfilm has announced that the Star Wars Fan Film Awards are coming back. “The best short films will be screened at Star Wars Celebration 2015 in Anaheim, California,” the brief announcement says. “Stay tuned for more information in the coming weeks.” Speaking of Celebration 2015, we also learned this week that Steve Sansweet is bringing Rancho Obi-Wan back to the convention for the third time. Steve is one of those guys who always has a new and interesting story to share, and as his legendary collection keeps growing, so too does his repository of stories and memories. If you’re heading to Anaheim next year, you owe it to yourself to check out the Rancho Obi-Wan exhibit.
Eric Geller is a journalist from the Washington, D.C. area. He co-hosts The ForceCast podcast and manages social media for Star Wars fan sites TheForce.Net and Rebelscum.com. He also contributes to The Official Star Wars Blog and Star Wars Insider.