YodaSome more exciting developments are starting to leak out of Skywalker Ranch regarding the two new (animated and live-action) Star Wars television shows. There was lots of future-speak going on at the Revenge of the Sith DVD press junket on Thursday, as folks tried to get as much or as little information out about these projects. After all, the fate of the universe depends on them.

As of right now, the animated series seems to be trucking full steam ahead with animation already being done at the ranch. Looks like it's all conceptual since the scripts are still being hammered out. In fact, George Lucas wants to finish 13 scripts before they really delve in and get wet with the whole thing. The estimation there is towards the end of March.

The live-action project is still in script mode, as I reported not too long ago, but a tad more info is forming at the surface. First off, production will most likely be taking place all over the world with a home-base in Sydney, and they'll be shooting on hi-def, unless something better and more affordable comes out before then.

As far as story goes, producer Rick McCallum says that they're looking to focus on about 100 hours between Episodes III and IV, "with a lot of characters that we haven't met but have been developed in other novels and other things." He feels that, by the end of the series, all of your questions will be answered. Frankly, I don't have any questions Rick, but that doesn't mean I can't make up a few between now and then.

Frank Oz (the voice of Yoda) was also in attendance and admitted that he is involved in the animated series, but that the live-action one was still too far away to claim yay or nay. Ian McDiarmid (Emperor Palpatine) also couldn't give a straight answer regarding his involvement but did note that "George's intention is to follow one of the characters who's been less highlighted up to now, but has been very popular (Boba Fett???) with the audiences." He also noted that Peter Cushing played a "very effective representative" of the Emperor, so expect there to be a "number of very effective representative's" down the line.

Finally, Lucas himself did not attend the junket, but McCallum did give an update on Indiana Jones 4 by saying that George should finish the script by Sunday and will meet with Steven Spielberg next week to hash out final adjustments. To see that this project is still in script mode kind of makes me feel as if the news of the mysterious Laura Dutta being cast may have really been some kind of publicity stunt. Oh well.