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Jon Favreau Compares ‘The Mandalorian’s’ Scale to Original Star Wars Trilogy

Jon Favreau gave some more insight into the scale of his forthcoming Disney Plus “Star Wars” series “The Mandalorian” at Variety‘s Entertainment & Technology summit.

The prolific multi-hyphenate likened the series, which takes place after the events of “Return of the Jedi,” to the original George Lucas trilogy in terms of scale and tone.

“For ‘Star Wars,’ the question was how do we make it feel like ‘Stars Wars,’ how can I tell a story set in this particular time…what’s this gritty world?” Favreau began. “The original ‘Star Wars’ movies were a bit more intimate, character driven. In many ways this follows the structure of a television show in that we don’t have an endless budget and it’s served by the scale of the original films which isn’t the big, huge blockbuster movies you see on the big screen all the time. We are using technology that makes best use of that scale and part of what we’re exploring is using game engine, real-time rendering.”

Favreau is having a busy 2019, to say the least. He directed one of the biggest movies of the year with “The Lion King,” debuted his Netflix cooking series “The Chef Show” in June, and is set to have “The Mandalorian” premiere on the forthcoming Disney streaming service when it launches Nov. 12.

The director said he views each of his projects as a “different puzzle” with a “different set of parameters which require a different set of technologies” to solve. Favreau revealed he recently founded Golem Creations to have a platform to wield those different technologies and bring them all under one roof.

“At this point in my career, I created Golem Creations to be a catch-all for the technological side of filmmaking as opposed having a production company where we’re pouring over scripts and trying to find things to develop,” Favreau said. “The company is very small and it’s all about collaborating with other companies and other filmmakers and creating content myself that is exciting not just because it’s telling a story, it’s also innovating and shaping the industry.”

Earlier in the conversation, Favreau addressed the potential departure of Spider-Man from the Marvel Cinematic Universe as a result of the impasse between Marvel and Sony, which owns the on-screen rights to the web-slinging hero. Favreau said that the fact the issue hasn’t yet been resolved is “not for lack of trying.”

“I’ve been talking to everybody about it…I’m cautiously optimistic,” he said. “I think it’s a long way away and I think the collaboration has been really strong up to this point so I’m hopeful that there’s a way for us all to play together going forward.”

To close off the keynote with Variety co-editor-in-chief Andrew Wallenstein, Favreau weighed in on the future of technology and its intersection with the entertainment industry.

While Favreau acknowledged the potential dangers of technology and the fact that technological disruptions can have negative effects on the industry, he concluded that “the challenge of our time” is to find a way to use those advances for the better.

“Ultimately, it’s the human factor that shapes our path into the future and it’s the people who are innovating in those areas, creating new tools, that are going to determine what we inherit and what the future holds,” he said. “I’ve been lucky enough to have the wonderful privilege of telling stories and having innovations of other people help me. I want to pass some of that to the next generation and help preserve what those who came before me are concerned about and hopefully get like minded people who are cautiously optimistic about the future to come together and be at the forefront of those innovations.”

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