As the parade of articles we’ve been getting over the past few days indicates, The Mandalorian is the cover of Entertainment Weekly’s Fall TV preview.
Weirdly enough, the biggest news out of the cover story wasn’t even broken by EW themselves – it’s Deadline who ID’d the actress playing the character we see in the lead photo – Julia Jones, who may be most familiar to the general audience as Leah Clearwater from the Twilight films. (Hopefully her Star Wars character gets a better deal. She also had a brief role in Westworld S2. ) She can also be seen, briefly, in the D23 trailer. Maybe there’s another article coming with a detail or two on her character? Maybe?
Anyway, the cover story is low on new info for the die-hards, but we do get an indication of the personality of Taika Waititi’s IG-11:
The Kiwi, who also helmed the season 1 finale, labored on finding the perfect voice for the role before landing on a tone that he says is somewhere between Siri and HAL 9000. “[IG-11 is] very innocent and naive and direct and doesn’t know about sarcasm and doesn’t know how to lie,” Waititi says. “It’s like a child with a gun.”
And of course, another big question – will Pedro Pascal ever take off that mask?
Assisted by Pascal’s laconic line delivery and terse physicality, along with expressive choices in camera work and editing, [Jon] Favreau manages to infuse the character with a surprising amount of personality. “What’s remarkable is when you see the whole stretch of the first season how engaging the character is,” Favreau says. “It’s amazing how many Star Wars characters are emotionally engaging that aren’t even anthropomorphic. R2-D2 is my favorite character and he barely has an eye.”
Sure, The Mandalorian debuted footage here at Celebration Chicago on Sunday… But they haven’t actually released any of it elsewhere, not even the behind-the-scenes reel. There are a couple of stills and a basic plot breakdown.
The Mandalorian himself isn’t getting a name just yet, but we did learn that he’s working for Carl Weathers’ Greef Carga, who heads up a guild of bounty hunters. Gina Carano is playing Cara Dune, a former Rebel shock trooper, who gets in pulled in… Somehow. More over at StarWars.com.
Here’s the livestream, sans footage. It’s pretty much the Dave Filoni and Jon Favreau show, though Pedro Pascal is pretty hyped up about the whole thing:
For the record, I am never in favor of con-exclusive footage, but hey, if Lucasfilm and Disney would prefer to play whack-a-mole all over the internet with fuzzy subpar copies, that’s their business. Meanwhile, there are many recaps.
As with any new Star Wars project, there’s been plenty of speculation as to what existing characters we’re likely to see in The Mandalorian. We saw plenty of Mandalorians in The Clone Wars and Rebels, and with Dave Filoni on board the series, there’s a good size list of characters that could make an appearance. In their latest report, Making Star Wars has some evidence which might point to the involvement of an important animated character. And also the Avatar sequels are involved. Sort of.
The Mandalorian cast list is finally official: StarWars.com reveals that Pedro Pascal will lead the series as “a lone Mandalorian gunfighter in the outer reaches of the galaxy.” Gina Carano, Carl Weathers, Werner Herzog and Nick Nolte are also confirmed, and we’re hearing about Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad), Emily Swallow (Supernatural), and Omid Abtahi (American Gods) for the first time.
The series is written and executive produced by Jon Favreau. Dave Filoni will be directing the first episode and serving as executive producer. It will debut on the streaming service Disney+, which launches next year.