Wednesday, March 20, 2013

It's Now or Never - Talking Points to #SaveTheCloneWars

By: Dominic Jones

It's a dark time for fandom.  The Clone Wars, the animated series that has captured our hearts is on its way out to make room for new projects.  While these projects are exciting, there is no reason The Clone Wars can't move forward as well.  It's now up to the fans to convince Disney that the series is viable and deserves to continue to it's natural conclusion.  And time is running out.  There are reports that the "bonus content" fans were promised when the announcement that the series is wrapping up was made will NOT include conclusions to the stories of some of the series most beloved and intriguing characters, including Ahsoka Tano, Darth Maul, Captain Rex and Asajj Ventres.  On top of that, there are now reports that Disney has already begun massive layoffs at Lucasfilm animation. 

But there is still hope.  Over the past month and a half, RebelForce Radio has been organizing a letter writing campaign to Disney CEO Bob Iger, politely expressing our desire to see The Clone Wars continue and we are hearing from inside sources that it's having an effect on Disney!  A great start, but this is no time to stop, if anything it proves that we need to work harder to save The Clone Wars.  Letter writting campaigns have worked on Disney in the past. reminds us that both Kim Possible and Princess Mononoke were saved by fans through letter writing campaigns.  

So, if you haven't written a letter already, get started now.  The secret to our success will be a combination of passion and logic.  If you're reading this then no doubt you have a passion for the series, be sure that it comes across in your letter.  But passion alone is not enough.  We have to prove to Disney that The Clone Wars is a viable production.  To help do that, here is a list of facts (viewership, awards, and award nominations) that can be used as talking point in your letter to Disney:

-Average 3.3 Million viewers per episode (via Daily Variety January 4, 2013)

-Guinness world record for highest rated animated sci-fi series

-Won 2009 Golden Reel Award (awarded by Motion Picture Sound Editors, USA) for Best Sound Editing - Television animation (Beat powerhouses such as Family Guy, Spongebob Squarepants, The Penguins of Madagascar, and Avatar: The Last Airbender)

-Won 2010 NOW award for best animated series (beat powerhouses Futurama, Family Guy, and Archer)

-Clone Wars Annie Awards nominations:
2013: Animated effects in an animated production, Character animation in an Animated television/broadcast production, Editorial in an Animated Television or Other Broadcast Venue Production, Voice acting in an Animated television or other broadcast venue production
2012: Animated effects in an animated production, Best general audience animated TV production, Editing in Television production, voice acting in a television production (x2)
2011: Best Animated Television production, Best voice acting in an animated television production (x2), Writing in a television production
2010: Music in a television Production
2009: Best music in an Animated Television Production or short film

-Nominated for a Saturn award in 2009 (best syndicated/cable series)

-Nominated in 2010 Teen Choice awards (Choice TV: Animated show)

-Nominated in 2010 for Television Critics award (outstanding Achievement in Children's programming)

Make sure you remind Disney of (at least some of) these facts, as it is facts like these may well be key to convincing them that the series is worth saving. 

There are multiple people that could have an impact towards saving the series.  There's Disney CEO Bob Iger, who ultimately has final say.  There's Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy, who could put some major pressure Disney to bring back the series.  There's George Lucas, who has the influence over both Kennedy and Iger necessary to save the series.  And finally there's John Lasseter, the Chief Creative Officer and head of both Pixar and Disney animation.  A vote of confidence from him could go along way to convincing Disney that the series is worth saving.  Their addresses are listed below:

Disney Studios
500 S Buena Vista St
Burbank, CA 91521
Attn: Bob Iger

P.O. Box 29901
San Francisco, CA 94129-0901
Attn: Kathleen Kennedy

George Lucas 
P.O. Box 2009
San Rafael, CA 94912 

Walt Disney Studios
500 S Buena Vista St
Burbank, CA 91521
Attn: John Lasseter

Now, I fully understand that sending letters from places outside the U.S can be costly, fortunately there is another option.  The kind folks over at 11ThirtyEight have volunteered to collect online messages from fans and send them to Disney.  Be sure to include your location in the world as it will help prove to Disney that The Clone Wars has a truly international audience.  Submit your message here.

One final thing that can help, be vocal on social media.  Use the hashtag #SaveTheCloneWars in any tweets about the series.  Tweet @Disney and @StarWars and let them know you want to see the series continue.  Visit the Disney and Star Wars Facebook pages and leave comments about having the series continue.   Make lots of noise and maybe the powers that be will notice.

No matter how you go about contacting Disney, Lucasfilm and anyone else who could make a difference remember one thing above all else: BE POLITE!  Nobody likes getting hate mail and messages that insult the decision makers will have an adverse effect on what we are trying to achieve.  Be polite, but strong in your arguments and beliefs.

So there you have it.  The contact info for the decision makers and the facts that could save the series.  This, combined with your passion, is what can ultimately #SaveTheCloneWars. 


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