The recent Vanity Fair feature on upcoming Star Wars projects dove into Andor as well, which is said to be premiering late this summer (though the exact date is still unknown). There were some new details on what to expect in the show’s first season, as well as the role of Mon Mothma in the series.
Genevieve O’Reilly is reprising the role as the Rebellion leader, having played her in Revenge of the Sith and Rogue One, following up on Caroline Blakiston’s brief but memorable appearance in Return of the Jedi. O’Reilly also returned to voice the character in a few episodes of the animated Star Wars Rebels as well. She’s part of the cast of Andor, which stars Diego Luna in his return to the role of Cassian Andor, and from the sound of this article, she’s a major player in it.
Anthony Breznican wrote this about her role, including a quote from showrunner Tony Gilroy:
In Andor, her story will run parallel to the title character, whom we know will eventually become one of her key agents. “It is a huge, orchestral, Dickensian ensemble cast,” says Gilroy.
To me, that sounds almost like O’Reilly will be a co-lead with Luna, and that’s further validated by the fact that she was present with Luna for the photo shoot with Annie Leibovitz – with a new outfit for once, the first time we’ve really seen the character’s appearance change on-screen. We always have to be careful not to read too much into statements like this, and the series is called Andor for a reason, but since it’s showing some of the early days of the Rebellion it sounds like Mothma will be a central figure rather than a supporting cast member. I like the idea of them starting out by showing two simultaneous stories, one with Andor and one with Mothma, and having those threads eventually merge into one story of the Rebellion, with Andor actually working for Mothma’s fledgling fight against the Empire.
From further details on the article, it does seem like we’ll see how Andor got started in this fight. He says in Rogue One that he’s been in the fight since he was six years old, but that would actually be before the Empire even was formed – so, in other words, there’s room to play around with that and show him in the fight but not yet part of the larger Rebellion (like what we saw in Rebels, as a lone band of freedom fighters wound up joining forces with the larger movement). We learned quite a bit about what the show might be about in its first season.
Luna mentioned that it’s a story that resonates with him personally, as “it’s the journey of a migrant. That feeling of having to move is behind this story, very profoundly and very strong. That shapes you as a person. It defines you in many ways, and what you are willing to do.”
That’s perhaps explained by the fact that, according to the article, “The story begins with the destruction of Andor’s birth world, then follows him into adulthood, when he realizes he can’t run forever.” Gilroy, who co-wrote Rogue One, adds that the entire first season is based on his adopted home world (which is still not yet disclosed), and that this becomes another planet that is wiped out by the Empire as it stands in their path. This leads, eventually, to Andor deciding to stand up against them.
So the whole first season of the show will, from the sound of it, explore Cassian’s backstory and where he’s at as a character, showing what ultimately leads him to the Rebellion. Meanwhile, we’ll also focus on Mon Mothma and her efforts to fight against the Empire in secret, from the shadows, until the time is right. Based on all of that, I think this show has remarkable potential and might surprise a lot of people. It’s easily the most under-the-radar of the Star Wars shows in development, and that’s understandable – but I think that makes it poised to be a pleasant surprise for many.
And if you want to know what the first season will be about, here’s how Gilroy described it: “This guy gave his life for the galaxy, right? I mean, he consciously, soberly, without vanity or recognition, sacrificed himself. Who does that? That’s what this first season is about. It’s about him being really revolution-averse, and cynical, and lost, and kind of a mess.”
Sign me up for seeing that!