Filoni at the 2016 NCWIT Summit
June 7, 1974
|Alma mater||Edinboro University of Pennsylvania|
|Occupation||Animation director, voice actor, writer, television producer, animator|
David Filoni (born June 7, 1974) is an American film and televison director, voice actor, television writer, television producer and animator. He has worked on Avatar: The Last Airbender, The Mandalorian, and on the theatrical film and television series of Star Wars: The Clone Wars. He was also the creator and an executive producer on Star Wars Rebels for all four seasons, and served as its supervising director for all but the third season, in which Justin Ridge served as supervising director while Filoni accepted a promotion to oversee all of Lucasfilm Animation projects. Filoni is also credited as one of the writers and executive producers of the web series, Star Wars Forces of Destiny and as the creator of the 2018–2020 animated series, Star Wars Resistance.
Dave Filoni grew up in Mt. Lebanon, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Pittsburgh. He graduated from the Mt. Lebanon High School in 1992 and Edinboro University of Pennsylvania in 1996. Filoni's father was an opera and a classical music fan, according to composer Kevin Kiner (who did most of the music for The Clone Wars and Rebels); as such, he inherited appreciation for classical music and helped with the collaboration process, with Kiner crediting Filoni for suggesting the organ in Grand Admiral Thrawn's theme from Rebels. Filoni has also said that his grandfather and uncle were pilots, with the latter specializing in restoring planes. He cited this as a significant influence with regards to the concept of Star Wars Resistance.
Prior to his work with Lucasfilm Animation, Filoni worked as a storyboard artist and/or assistant director for various animated series, including Mike Judge's King of the Hill, Phil Walsh's Teamo Supremo, and Disney's Kim Possible, before moving on to direct many of Nickelodeon's first-season episodes of the animated series Avatar: The Last Airbender.
An avid Star Wars fan, particularly of character Plo Koon, Filoni dressed up as the Jedi Master for the opening of Revenge of the Sith, and was dismayed at the character's fate in the film. Filoni left Nickelodeon after George Lucas offered him a job, helping him develop a Star Wars animated series. While on The Star Wars Show Filoni revealed that he originally believed he was being pranked when given the Star Wars job.
Filoni's office, as seen in the extra features on the Star Wars: The Clone Wars DVD, is filled with Plo Koon paraphernalia. He has a bust of Plo Koon's head, a model of Plo Koon's ship, an autographed portrait by the actor who played Plo Koon, a replica of Plo Koon's lightsaber on his desk, and his personal Plo Koon costume on display. Filoni also has a notebook-sized planner on his desk with Plo Koon's picture taped to the outside, and he has written the words "Plo Kool" on concept art designs for the Clone Wars, indicating that he liked those designs. Filoni also has a small model of the character Appa on his desk, from Avatar: The Last Airbender. Filoni has attended all the Clone Wars premieres and attended the fifth season premiere in Orlando, Florida during the special event Celebration VI on August 24, 2012. He is most associated with developing the characters of Ahsoka Tano and Captain Rex.
Producing and directing
Filoni made an appearance at Celebration IV on Sunday, May 28, 2007 with producer Catherine Winder to discuss the beginnings of the new television series and reveal how The Clone Wars is being created. At the time, he announced he would be writing for the Clone Wars monthly comic. Filoni voices the bounty hunter Embo during various episodes in different seasons. In February 2009, Filoni was inducted as an Honorary Member of the 501st Legion international costuming organization in recognition of his contributions to the continuing Star Wars saga.
Filoni was as an executive producer of Star Wars Rebels, which debuted in fall 2014, alongside Greg Weisman and Simon Kinberg. For the first two seasons he also served as its supervising director. He appointed Justin Ridge as his successor for the remainder of the show, though he still remained as executive producer. Filoni departed as supervising director in September 2016 when he was given the job as overseer of all future and current Lucasfilm Animation projects. Then he returned as supervising director for season 4.
In 2017, Jon Favreau invited Filoni to work with him to create The Mandalorian, a live action Star Wars television series that appeared on Disney+ in November 2019. Referred to as "a Lucas encyclopedia", he contributes to and consults on many aspects of the series' production. He is an executive producer of the show, as well as director of episodes 1 and 5 of Season 1 and episode 5 of season 2, making it his live action debut.
Filoni provided the voice of the bounty hunter Embo and the droid CH-33P ("Cheep") in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. In the Star Wars Rebels season three episodes "The Holocrons of Fate" and "Legacy of Mandalore", Filoni voiced a Rebel Crewman, Stormtroopers, and Mandalorian Warrior, respectively. He also voiced Chopper for the entirety of the show, a fact not revealed until the series finale. Dave Filoni also voiced Bo Keevil, a secondary character in Star Wars Resistance.
Filoni made his live action acting debut in The Mandalorian as Trapper Wolf, an X-Wing pilot during the time of the New Republic, who appeared in the episodes Chapter 6: The Prisoner and Chapter 10: The Passenger.
|Director||Writer||Executive Producer||Art |
|The WIN Awards||2005||No||No||No||Yes||animation director|
|Star Wars: The Force Awakens||2015||No||No||No||Yes||Screaming Jakku villager||voice; concept artist|
|Rogue One: A Star Wars Story||2016||No||No||No||No||Chopper||voice cameo|
|The Mandalorian||2019–present||Yes||Yes||Yes||No||Trapper Wolf||live-action debut|
|Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian||2020||No||No||Yes||No||Himself||documentary|
|Title||Year||Credited as||Voice role||Notes|
|Director||Writer||Executive Producer|| Animation|
|King of the Hill||1997–1999||No||No||No||Yes||character & storyboard artist / assistant director|
|Mission Hill||1999–2002||No||No||No||Yes||storyboard artist / assistant director|
|The Oblongs||2001||No||No||No||Yes||retakes / assistant director|
|Teamo Supremo||2002||No||No||No||Yes||storyboard artist|
|Kim Possible||2003||No||No||No||Yes||storyboard artist & revisions|
|Lilo & Stitch: The Series||2003–2004||No||No||No||Yes||storyboard artist|
|Dave the Barbarian||2004–2005||No||No||No||Yes||storyboard artist|
|American Dragon: Jake Long||2005||No||No||No||Yes||storyboard artist|
|Avatar: The Last Airbender||2005||Yes||No||No||Yes||storyboard artist / character designer|
|Star Wars: The Clone Wars||2008||Yes||No||No||Yes||development artist|
|Star Wars: The Clone Wars||2008–2014, 2020||Supervising||Yes||Yes[a]||Yes||Embo / Various||development artist|
|Star Wars Rebels||2014–2018||Supervising||Yes||Yes||Yes||Chopper / Various||creator / storyboard artist|
|Star Wars Forces of Destiny||2017–2018||Additional||Additional||Yes||Yes||Chopper / Stormtrooper||storyboard artist|
|Lego Star Wars: All-Stars||2018||No||No||No||No||Chopper|
|Star Wars Resistance||2018–2020||No||Story||Yes||No||Bo Keevil / Various||creator / developer|
|Star Wars: The Bad Batch||2021||TBA||TBA||Yes||TBA||TBA|
- Only for Season 7.
Episodic directing and writing credits
|Avatar: The Last Airbender||1||1||"The Boy in the Iceberg"||Yes||No|
|2||"The Avatar Returns"||Yes||No|
|13||"The Blue Spirit"||Yes||No|
|17||"The Northern Air Temple"||Yes||No|
|20||"The Siege of the North, Part 2"||Yes||No|
|Star Wars: The Clone Wars||Theatrical film||Yes||No|
|1||2||"Rising Malevolence"||Yes||Add.||Teleplays written by Steven Melching|
|3||"Shadow of Malevolence"||No||Add.|
|9||"Cloak of Darkness"||Yes||No|
|2||22||"Lethal Trackdown"||Yes||Yes||Co-written with Drew Z. Greenberg|
|4||14||"A Friend in Need"||Yes||No|
|5||2||"A War on Two Fronts"||Yes||No|
|20||"The Wrong Jedi"||Yes||No|
|7||2||"A Distant Echo"||No||Yes||Co-written with Matt Michnovetz & Brent Friedman|
|5||"Gone with a Trace"||No||Yes||Co-written with Charles Murray|
|6||"Deal No Deal"||No||Yes|
|9||"Old Friends, Not Forgotten"||No||Yes|
|10||"The Phantom Apprentice"||No||Yes|
|12||"Victory and Death"||No||Yes|
|Star Wars Rebels||Shorts||1||"The Machine in the Ghost"||Yes||No|
|4||"Property of Ezra Bridger"||Yes||No|
|1||10||"Path of the Jedi"||Yes||No|
|15||"Fire Across the Galaxy"||Yes||No|
|2||3||"The Lost Commanders"||Yes||No||Co-directed with Sergio Paez|
|7||"Wings of the Master"||Yes||No|
|21-22||"Twilight of the Apprentice"||Yes||Yes||Co-written with Melching & Simon Kinberg|
|3||12-13||"Ghosts of Geonosis"||No||Yes||Co-written with Melching & Michnovetz|
|15||"Trials of the Darksaber"||No||Yes|
|20||"Twin Suns"||Yes||Yes||Co-written with Henry Gilroy|
|4||6||"Flight of the Defender"||No||Yes||Co-written with Melching|
|7||"Kindred"||No||Yes||Co-written with Gilroy|
|9||"Rebel Assault"||No||Yes||Co-written with Melching|
|10||"Jedi Night"||No||Yes||Co-written with Gilroy|
|11||"DUME"||No||Yes||Co-written with Christopher Yost|
|12||"Wolves and a Door"||Yes||Yes||Co-directed with Bosco Ng|
|13||"A World Between Worlds"||Yes||Yes||Co-directed with Steward Lee|
|14||"A Fool's Hope"||Yes||No||Co-directed with Saul Ruiz|
|15-16||"Family Reunion and Farewell"||Yes||Yes||Co-directed with Ng & Paez|
Co-written with Gilroy, Kinberg, Melching & Kiri Hart
|Star Wars: Forсes of Destiny||1||2||"BB-8 Bandits"||No||Add.||Teleplays written by Jennifer Muro|
|4||"The Padawan Path"||No||Add.|
|5||"Beasts of Echo Base"||No||Add.|
|6||"The Imposter Inside"||No||Add.|
|14||"An Imperial Feast"||No||Add.|
|15||"The Happabore Hazard"||No||Add.|
|2||1||"Hasty Departure"||Add.||Add.||Directed by Brad Rau|
Teleplays written by Jennifer Muro
|5||"Run Rey Run"||Add.||Add.|
|7||"The Path Ahead"||Add.||Add.|
|Star Wars Resistance||1||1-2||"The Recruit"||No||Story||Teleplay written by Brandon Auman|
|The Mandalorian||1||1||"Chapter 1: The Mandalorian"||Yes||No|
|5||"Chapter 5: The Gunslinger"||Yes||Yes|
|2||5||"Chapter 13: The Jedi"||Yes||Yes|
|2008||The Clone Wars 1||Cover arts||Comics|
|2009||The Clone Wars 7: In Service of the Republic, Part 1|
|2012||The Clone Wars: The Sith Hunters|
|2015||Dark Disciple||Based on screenplays of eight unproduced episodes for The Clone Wars co-written with Filoni||Novels|
|2016||The Confidence Chronicles||Illustrations|
Awards and nominations
|2013||40th Daytime Creative Arts Emmy Awards||Outstanding Directing in an Animated Program||Star Wars: The Clone Wars||Nominated|
|Outstanding Special Class Animated Program||Won|
|2014||41st Daytime Creative Arts Emmy Awards||Won|
|2015||42nd Daytime Creative Arts Emmy Awards||Outstanding Directing in an Animated Program||Nominated|
|Outstanding Special Class Animated Program||Nominated|
|2017||69th Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards||Outstanding Children's Program||Star Wars Rebels||Nominated|
|2018||70th Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards||Nominated|
|2019||71st Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards||Star Wars Resistance||Nominated|
|2020||72nd Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards||Nominated|
|72nd Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Drama Series||The Mandalorian||Nominated|
- Anderton, Ethan (September 26, 2016). "Dave Filoni Now Overseeing Creative Development of New Lucasfilm Animation Projects". /Film. Retrieved November 25, 2019.
- Owen, Rob (October 3, 2014). "Tuned In: Pittsburgh native delves into 'Star Wars' lore". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Archived from the original on January 11, 2015. Retrieved October 17, 2017.
- Young, Bryan (May 29, 2018). "Star Wars composer Kevin Kiner on following in John Williams' galactic footsteps". Syfy. Retrieved November 25, 2019.
- "Star Wars Resistance, anime-inspired series, set for fall debut". StarWars.com. April 26, 2018. Retrieved November 25, 2019.
- Star Wars (August 12, 2016). "Dave Filoni Extended Interview – The Star Wars Show". YouTube. Retrieved November 25, 2019.
- "'Star Wars Rebels' Renewal for Season 3 Confirmed; 2016 Premiere to Get Same Timeslot on Disney XD". Venture Capital Post. December 4, 2015. Retrieved December 6, 2015.
- Jones, Dominic (September 24, 2016). "Report: Justin Ridge Replaces Dave Filoni as Supervising Director of 'Star Wars Rebels' (Updated!)". Star Wars Underworld.com. Retrieved November 25, 2019.
- That Time George Lucas Asked a Guy From Pittsburgh to Join Him and Rule the Galaxy - Vanity Fair, retrieved June 22, 2020
- In Baby Yoda, Hollywood Sees Its Past, Present and Meme-able Future - Hollywood Reporter, retrieved June 22, 2020
- Star Wars Resistance (TV Series 2018– ) - IMDb, retrieved April 10, 2020
- "The Mandalorian (TV Series 2019– )". IMDb. Retrieved April 10, 2020.
- "From "Blast That X-wing!" to "Traitor!": The Voices of Star Wars: The Force Awakens". StarWars.com. January 25, 2016. Retrieved November 25, 2019.