''Star Wars'' cartoon series may be on the way. Cartoon Network and Lucasfilm are in negotiations on an undisclosed project

Lucasfilm, the company behind ”Star Wars,” is in discussions with the Cartoon Network about joining forces for an undisclosed project, a spokesperson for the cable channel tells EW.com. Internet reports have suggested that the project in question is a ”Star Wars” cartoon series, possibly titled ”The Clone Wars,” but Laurie Goldberg, a Cartoon Network senior vice president for publicity, declined to offer details on the negotiations. ”Cartoon Network is constantly seeking partnership opportunities with great creative companies,” Goldberg said. ”So naturally Lucasfilm would be high on that list. But to speculate now on a series launch or the nature of our discussions would be very premature.”

A Lucasfilm spokesperson declined to comment on the reports, which appeared on Ain’t It Cool News and The Force.Net — two fan sites that have often proved a reliable source of advance ”Star Wars” information. Citing anonymous sources, the sites suggest that Lucasfilm is planning a cartoon series that would chronicle the ”Clone Wars” period between ”Star Wars: Episode II — Attack of the Clones” and the as-yet-unnamed third ”Star Wars” prequel, due in theaters in 2005. The end of ”Clones” — with its flashy sequences of gleaming Clone Troopers fighting a droid army– showed the first battle of the Clone Wars, a pivotal, but mysterious conflict in “Star Wars” mythology.

There have already been two traditionally animated ”Star Wars” cartoon series — ”Droids” and ”Ewoks” both ran in the ’80s. But with new computer animation technology at the heart of Lucas’ latest movies, an animated series could, in theory, be indistinguishable from scenes in the live-action releases. In other words: Jar Jar, get ready for your close-up.