Next on Fox: When Good Jedi Go Bad! On March 10, the latest two-and-a-half-minute tease for Attack of the Clones will hit screens — but not the big silver kind. In a synergistic masterstroke, the Fox network (sister to Star Wars distributor Twentieth Century Fox) will air the trailer just before 9 p.m. EST between slightly abbreviated episodes of Malcolm in the Middle and The X-Files, making it the first Wars preview to debut on TV. ”We went to Fox [TV] with this and obviously they jumped at the idea,” explains Lucasfilm VP of marketing Jim Ward. ”It’s a win-win situation for everyone.” The strategy isn’t all corporate back-scratching, insists Ward. ”TV hits a lot of eyeballs.” And fans will still be able to see the trailer in theaters — exclusively attached to Fox’s animated Ice Age, opening March 15, and likely in front of E.T. and others later in March.
Ward is typically cryptic about the teaser’s contents but notes that it won’t focus on the romance between Anakin (Hayden Christensen) and Padme (Natalie Portman). Instead, he promises ”a bit more about the macro plot,” as well as ”an epic battle sequence” featuring Jedi godfather Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson, above). ”You’ll see one-on-one in lightsaber duels, of course, but you’ll also see, on a huge scale, hundreds of Jedi in action,” says Ward. ”This is kind of like the WWF of Jedi fighting.”