By now, we're sure you've had the chance to check out Disney+ and Jon Favreau's first live-action Star Wars television series, The Mandalorian (check out our reviews of the first three episodes here, here and here, and our overall coverage here). Today brings viewers season finale "Chapter 8: Redemption" and a lot to mentally unpack on what it all means for the second season.
Speaking of the second season… Favreau took to social media to confirm when the series would be returning for a second season: Fall 2020 (feel like I hear a whole lot of "WHEW!" happening out there).
Here's a look at Favreau's Instagram post – and while running the risk of commiting "Star Wars sacrilege", it looks like a stop-motion model of a "grim-n-gritty" Pig in a much darker take on Angry Birds:
It's pretty clear by now that series star Pedro Pascal wasn't supposed to reveal his character's name before the series aired, but that's what he did in the following press video made available before the premiere – beginning at the 2:30 mark.
Yup… Din Djarin.
Thanks to Vanity Fair and a great profile they presented on Ming-Na Wen and the series earlier this year, fans were given a preivew of her character via an official image (both below). Wen also gave fans clues as to what to expect from Shand as well as what it's like to work in the Star Wars universe (and make sure to check out the full article here):
● On the "animalistic" nature of the name:
"We got our inspiration really from the name. The idea of a fennec fox came to mind. She's tricky, and yet she's able to maneuver and survive, and be stealthy—so very graceful and agile. I just love that whole image with the name."
● Like any self-respecting assassin, Shand has a backstory to tell… just don't think you're getting it any time soon:
"It will evolve, it will change. I mean, I think that's what's so wonderful about creating a new character. I think she has a good sense of humor about it all as well, which is also fun. You can't really pinpoint which direction she's going to go."
● Wen's connection to the Star Wars universe goes back years and was very personal to her:
"It's definitely a film that has had such an impact in so many people's lives, including my own. As an Asian kid in Pittsburgh, and especially in Mount Lebanon, sometimes you feel very alone and very isolated. And I think for me, with Star Wars, I connected so much with Luke having these dreams and wanting something bigger and better than being a little farmer in Tatooine. Just that image of him looking at the binary suns and wishing for more, it always stays with me."
● Wen also had a major influence on Shand's final look:
"At first, the idea was maybe just have her hair be loose, unkempt kind of thing. And I thought, Well, she's going to be wearing a helmet and she's this stealth assassin. How great would it be if her hair has a bit of the fennec fox architecture to it? So the hairstylist came up with this great braiding system, that just gives an idea of these triangular points. Like her ears."
● With that look comes some promised major fire power:
"She has quite a few weapons because she's a very skilled fighter. Just her body is a weapon in and of itself. And she does carry…a big, big gun. A big boy."
After the stories of Jango and Boba Fett, another warrior emerges in the Star Wars universe. "The Mandalorian" is set after the fall of the Empire and before the emergence of the First Order. We follow the travails of a lone gunfighter in the outer reaches of the galaxy far from the authority of the New Republic.
Set between the events in Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens, the drama from showrunner Favreau (The Lion King) and Dave Filoni (The Clone Wars) takes place after the fall of the Empire and before the emergence of the First Order and follows a lone gunfighter in the outer reaches of the galaxy far from the authority of the New Republic.
The Mandalorian stars Pedro Pascal, Gina Carano, Nick Nolte, Giancarlo Esposito, Ming-Na Wen, Carl Weathers, Emily Swallow, Omid Abtahi, Werner Herzog, Taika Waititi, Bill Burr, and Mark Boone Jr. star.