The American Cinematheque of Hollywood will present a two-night special event showcasing the works of Samurai Jack and Dexter’s Laboratory creator Genndy Tartakovsky on Friday, Mar. 18, and Saturday, Mar. 19. Part of the Cinematheque’s Animation A-Go-Go series, the event will take place at the Egyptian Theatre and will feature a sneak preview of the entire second volume of the micro-series, Star Wars: Clone Wars, which debuts on Cartoon Network on Mar. 21.
Moscow-born creator/writer/director Tartakovsky graduated from Cal Arts. In addition to creating Cartoon Network’s Samurai Jack and Dexter’s Laboratory, he has directed and produced episodes of The Powerpuff Girls and other network staples. His work got the attention of George Lucas, who entrusted him with using his signature style of animation and art design to bridge the gap between the second and third episodes of the Star Wars film saga.
Tartakovsky, who is reportedly working on a few pet projects as he makes a shift to feature films, will be present both nights of the tribute to offer attendees a peek at upcoming events and some films he made as a student. In addition, the program will include screenings of classic cartoons by animators and filmmakers who have influenced Tartakovsky’s career.
The Friday screenings (7:30 p.m.) will chronicle Tartakovsky’s evolution as a filmmaker, offering rarely seen early shorts, samplings of the first season of Star Wars: Clone Wars, the two-part Samurai Jack episode “Birth of Evil” and a few of Tartakovsky’s favorite classic cartoons from legends like Tex Avery.
On Saturday, (5 p.m.) ticket holders will be treated to the world premiere of the entire second season of Star Wars: Clone Wars, which Tartakovsky will have completed just days before its debut. He will also uncover some side-projects, including interstitial clips he created for Cartoon Network based on vintage Hanna Barbara characters, as well as more inspirational offerings from the masters of animation.
At 8 p.m. on Saturday, the American Cinematheque will be screening Universal’s 1982 Arnold Schwarzenegger flick, Conan The Barbarian, which has greatly influenced Tartakovsky’s work. He describes the first 20 minutes of the John Milius film as "flawless filmmaking." The film will be followed by hand-picked Samurai Jack episodes that Tartakovsky feels were influenced most heavily by the Oliver Stone-penned tale of a boy born to slavery to emerge a muscle-bound avenger. Tartakovsky will appear for a discussion after the program, moderated by animation writer Jon M. Gibson.
All screenings will be held at the Lloyd E. Rigler Theatre at the historic Egyptian Theatre, located at 6712 Hollywood Boulevard between Highland and Las Palmas in Hollywood. The program has been made possible by Cartoon Network and LucasFilm.