Could you please present yourself? What is your job? What were your previous projects?
My name is George Krstic
, I am a writer and producer working in Los Angeles. My previous work includes the Emmy-nominated animated series MTV Downtown
where I served as a story editor and writer, as well as co-creating Megas XLR
for Cartoon Network. I got my start in low-budget live action television on such shows as Renegade
and in journalism where I wrote and edited Axcess
magazine. (Note : find all the news about George Krstic on his website
Are you a Star Wars fan? Do you know the EU or just the movies?
Ha! Fan is too casual a term...more like Star Wars
freak, since I was four years old – I still remember the first time I saw that Star Destroyer seemingly engulf the entire screen in the first shot. As a huge Star Wars
nerd, I am an very familiar with the EU, movies, books, toys, video games, bath towels, you name it – if it has anything to do with Star Wars
, I’m on it!
Are you going on Star Wars fan websites? Do you participate on these sites?
Numerous times – every day. Mostly for updates on collectibles, but also to keep up on news and events. I have a collecting problem. I had it under control for a while – only a figure here and there - but then when I started writing on the show, I just went nuts – the floodgates opened again once I was living in the Star Wars
universe again. I justified it as research, but it has gotten really, really bad...
Is that your first interview for a fan website?
No, but it is definitely the most thorough and professional! Always glad to chat with fellow SW fans...er, freaks...
Did you ever think be interviewed by a French website?
Of course, the French are known for their excellent taste! Seriously though, you guys seem to have an excellent sense of what’s going on out there in the community.
Did you know Starwars-Universe.com? If so, how did you find it?
Yes, I found your site when you ran some of the first reports on the series. I actually read up on all the info you posted before my first meeting.
How have you been hired by Lucasfilm to work on The Clone Wars?
I met Catherine Winder
, whose book on producing animation I had read, at an anime convention. She knew Megas
, which was a sci-fi action show airing on Cartoon Network at the time, and while we were chatting she mentioned that she was looking for people to crew up a top-secret Star Wars
animation project. Well, that got my attention!
A few months later Catherine introduced me to the show’s story editor – the extremely talented Henry Gilroy
, who had read my stuff and asked me on-board to serve as a writer. I was a fan of Henry’s work in comics and animation long before I ever met him, so it was an honor and joy to work with him – I learned a lot from Henry.
How many episodes did you already write?
I wrote three episodes two for first season, and one for second.
Each was very different in its own way, and each script presented a lot of unique challenges, but I had a blast working with these characters that I've seen as icons for so many years. I mean, I got to write dialogue for Obi-f@$#ing-Wan!
I felt like a kid again, and finally, finally, I found an outlet for all these damn voices in my head! I've been telling Star Wars
stories in one form or another since I cracked open that first R2 figure back in the day - whether it was in the badly-drawn homemade comic books I passed out to my classmates in grade-school, campfire tales of what I thought Boba Fett
was up to between Empire
, or the elaborate action figure dioramas I had in my dorm
rooms throughout college that made sure I stayed celibate.
Are you still working on this show now? If not, what are your current/future projects?
You mean when I’m not goofing off playing video games, or hunting down
the latest Chinese bootleg 12’’ Boba Fett figure?
Actually, I’m currently working on a number of my own feature projects, both animation and live-action. I’m in the early stages of development on a feature with acclaimed Japanese director Ryuhei Kitamura (Versus,
Clive Barker’s Midnight Meat Train
), and I also have a feature in the works with the people behind Wanted,
as well as another small film about otaku culture with an indie company that we hope to shoot in 09.
Additionally, I’m working with Eric Calderon, the producer behind Afro Samurai,
and Mark Waid
, the writer of DC Comic’s landmark Kingdom Come
title on a new anime series tentatively titled The Five Killers
Did you have meetings with Henry Gilroy, Dave Filoni and the episodic directors to think and share about the stories?
I worked closely with Henry via phone/emails and face-to-face story meetings.
Henry was up at the Ranch and we would get together when he came down to LA and beat plots out. He in turn was collaborating with Catherine, Dave and George up North
. When I visited the Ranch, I would meet with the team to catch up on the show and get feedback.
Are you in contact with the production team (animators, editors, sound designers...) to see the evolution of an episode and the transcription of your stories on the screen?
I worked mostly with the writing staff, but I was lucky enough to visit the other departments a few times, meet some amazing artists, editors, engineers and see the truly stunning stuff they are doing. Possibly due to my work on Megas XLR
, I was given a few of the over-the-top-space-battles scripts and it was a blast seeing my insane rantings translated into breath-taking art and action sequences by Filoni and the talented crew working on that particular episode. Those guys earn their money.
Could you see the episodes you wrote completed on the screen? Were they like you imagined in your mind? Did you see some changes from your original story?
I have yet to see anything other than a few clips but they looked amazing.
The first episode you wrote is Downfall of a Droid. Could you talk to us about it in a few words? What will be the general tone of the story?
We got to have a lot of fun with that script, in that we see a glimmer of what will become Anakin's undoing - the fact that he cares so much about the people around him, he loses sight of what it means to be a Jedi, and a commander.
And without giving anything away, we got to play with a lot of the dynamics of the show, putting our characters in unfamiliar situations - shaking them out of their comfort zones, and generally forcing them to think on their feet. In the end, I think it made for a very exciting story.
It seems that R2-D2 will be the main character of the story. Is that a choice you made, or Henry Gilroy/Dave Filoni asked you to write an episode focused on him? Did you like working with this character, even if there are not really lines of dialogue for an astromech droid?
As with most of the early plots, Henry and Dave came up with the rough premise and I was then lucky enough to jump aboard and work on the script - I don't think they knew at the time, but R2 is actually my favorite character (next to Boba, of course)!
It was a pleasure working with such a "human" non-human character - in my opinion, his range of emotive characteristics are one of the most charming aspects of the Saga. He's the wise-fool who, in some ways, serves as a touchstone and looking-glass through which we see all of the other characters. A not-so-silent witness to Anakin's rise and fall, as well as a relatable analog to the viewer's own journey.
In this episode, we will also discover for the first time Gha' Nachkt, a space scavenger that we can see in The Clone Wars visual guide. Did you create this character by yourself or was it the idea of someone else? Could you talk to us about his background? Does he work for the Separatists?
Gha' was a result of a series of meetings with Henry as we pitched ideas back and forth to each other. That's what was so great about working with Henry - the collaborative process often yielded something that neither of us initially had in mind, but due to the energy and common knowledge/love of the universe, all this great stuff would suddenly just come together.
I was told early-on that we had to stay away from Boba Fett, so I decided to try and honor his "presence" by representing each of the other bounty hunters that we see on the bridge of the Executor
when we are first introduced to Boba in Empire
. I figured if I can't use Boba, I'm going to try and find a place for the other bounty hunter bad-asses!
As a result, we made Gha' a Trandoshan
(ala Bossk), and there's a nod to IG-88
in the episode as well. Additionally, Gha's name is a play on the German phrase for "Good Night," as I thought it appropriate since he's involved in pretty some shady dealings, always keeping the Jedi in the dark and using subterfuge to lull his enemies into a false sense of security. A Jedi mind-trick, sans that whole Force-thing.
(Sharp-eyed viewers will notice that Gha' made a brief cameo in the movie.)
Could you say a few words on the other episodes you wrote? What will be the stories and the principal characters involved? Are you going to write again for this show?
It might be too soon to mention right now, but check back with me early next year!
How do you feel about being part of the huge saga that is Star Wars? Is it some kind of pride or dream came true?
It absolutely is, since it was A New Hope
that inspired me to get into this business as it has many fellow fans. Trite as it sounds, it actually is a dream come true. When I told friends and family that I would be writing for a Star Wars
series, their reaction caught me off guard they didn’t seem surprised at all. They said things like, "Well of course you’re writing for Star Wars,
this is what you’ve been preparing for all these years."
And I guess in a way they were right all those years of not kissing girls and not playing sports that I wasted on collecting, reading, and watching everything and anything even remotely related to Star Wars
paid off. It’s great to know that I actually haven’t wasted my life! Or maybe I have...
Interview realized on October 23rd 2008