By Daniel Lodge

It’s been over a decade since Samurai Jack aired, but an ending for the series – in the form of a movie or otherwise – has been on creator Genndy Tartakovsky’s mind since. After last year’s announcement that the series would finally return with a fifth season, Tartakovsky sat down with press at SDCC to explain what that return would look like and what brought it about.

Q: Why return to Samurai Jack?

A: Well I finished Hotel Transylvania 2, and after it came out I just started looking for other work. Everything was kind of going slow, and I’ve always been thinking about it, especially because we’ve been trying to make a movie for the last 8 years, and it was never coming together the right way. So I was literally sitting in the bathroom, and I decided – you know what? Everything’s going slow, lets see what happens if I just put it out there and if anybody wants to make it. So I sent an email about it, and got it right back… and in 2 weeks we started.

Q: Is this going to be the final season?

A: Yeah. It’s the final journey.

Q: How many episodes are you expecting?

A: We’re doing 10 episodes.

Q: Did you feel you were able to get everything you needed?

A: Yeah, for sure. In the movie I actually wanted to finish it somehow. I had all these different ideas. I kept trying to make those ideas work no matter what version we’re doing, because I felt like they were strong. And so in the TV show, I probably had three movies, so it was a perfect vehicle to really tell the story the right way. And I think that’s why it all worked out. Because if you believe in destiny and fate, which I do, its the best vehicle for this story and for Jack to finish.

Q: Are there any changes in how the show’s going to look?

A: Yeah.  Luckily we got pretty much everybody back with the original show, but the hardest thing is us, because we’re so ambitious, and our ideas are so big, that they’re hard to do in television. TV is all about schedule and budget.

Q: Is how you’re going to conclude the show going to change from how you envisioned it 14 years ago?

A: No. There’s a story I wanted to tell, probably after I finished. It’s something I wanted to do in animation actually for a long time, and it’s super challenging, but if we get it right its going to leave people in tears.

Samurai Jack doesn’t have an exact release schedule set, but Tartakovsky said fans could most likely expect to see it early in 2017.