What’s the difference between The Clone Wars movie and series?

Photo: Star Wars: The Clone Wars Episode 710 “The Phantom Apprentice” - Image Courtesy Disney+
Photo: Star Wars: The Clone Wars Episode 710 “The Phantom Apprentice” - Image Courtesy Disney+ /

In 2008, Star Wars legend Dave Filoni directed an animated film that would change Star Wars as we know it. Called Star Wars: The Clone Wars, the 3D animated movie brought back characters like Anakin and Obi-Wan Kenobi three years after we had seen them on screen in Episode III: Revenge of the SithBut the story itself takes place between Episode II: Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith.

Following the August 2008 movie, a series under the same name premiered on Cartoon Network in October — and it followed up on the events of the movie. Over a decade later, the series has wrapped with seven seasons, spanning from the cable network channel to Netflix and then Disney+.

But what’s the difference between the movie and the series? Here’s what you need to know.

The Clone Wars movie vs. TV series

In a way, The Clone Wars movie was essentially a movie pilot for the TV series; it’s what set up all the action for what was to come.

One of the most important things the movie set up, for example, was the reveal that Anakin Skywalker had a padawan. Many people know now that his padawan is Ahsoka Tano. But prior to 2008, that had all been brand new information added to the Star Wars lore.

The movie itself, though, is basically just one long episode of the series. It follows Obi-Wan, Anakin and Ahsoka as they attempt to rescue Jabba the Hutt’s son, while also falling prey to Count Dooku’s scheme, who attempts to frame the Jedi for stealing Hutt’s son.

The series, then, continued to take a closer look at the era known as the Clone Wars, when the Grand Amry of the Republic and its clones fought against the Separatists and their droids. The Jedi agreed to help the Republic in this regard. And so, many of the episodes revolve around battles that broke out as a result of this war.

Of course, so much more lore got built in between that — such as arcs about Darth Maul, the Kryze family and even the Bad Batch (who got their own spinoff series.) But with over 100 episodes, it’s quite hard to cover just how in-depth The Clone Wars series goes when it comes to creating new lore within Star Wars

So, if you’re thinking about watching the series because you want to know more about the nooks and crannies of Star Wars lore, definitely put that on your watch list. And it wouldn’t hurt to watch the movie as well, just so you understand the premise of the whole thing.

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