One of the more surprising things to come out of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was the fact that Forest Whitaker was playing a character named Saw Gerrera. For those of you who didn’t watch Star Wars: The Clone Wars, the character was originally introduced on that series, which was spearheaded by Dave Filoni.
The character is now coming full circle and will be back on The Clone Wars’ successor Star Wars Rebels, also run by Filoni, with Whitaker reprising the role he played on the big screen. Check out the promo for that below:
In The Clone Wars, Gerrera was trained by Anakin Skywalker and Obi Wan Kenobi as part of the Onderon Resistance, which became one of the seeds for the Rebellion. That story arc actually gave Whitaker a starting point to learn more about the character, as Dave Filoni recently revealed to Entertainment Weekly that Whitaker watched the episodes the character showed up in. Here’s what he said:
“Forest really wanted to know a lot about the character. He watched The Clone Wars episodes with his character and I had some detail for him about things George [Lucas] and I discussed. It gave him more time to develop the character as far as, ‘How did he get there?’”
This is one of the characters that would be a natural inclusion in Star Wars Rebels since he was introduced in The Clone Wars, and he had a backstory with the Rebel Alliance hinted at in Rogue One. If there is one thing that the expanded canon loves to do it is to fill in those gaps leftover from the films.
But the character won’t show up quite as he was in the film. Filoni goes on to describe the differences in the character between the time he shows up on Rebels, and when he appears in Rogue One. Here’s what he said:
“He’s not quite as beat up as you see him [in Rogue One]. I never wanted to go into a lengthy thing about this is how Saw lost his foot. It’s more about his philosophy and who he is and what he thinks about the Rebellion — and how they go about resisting the Empire.
“Saw really has this feeling that there are things at work, and if [the Rebels] don’t get active, there’ll be no stopping it. There’s only a thread of hope at that point.”
Going by what we saw in the promo, it looks like Gerrera has stumbled onto whispers regarding the Death Star. His connection to Mads Mikkelsen’s character Galen Erso, who is a key engineer of the dreaded planet killer, makes his intel pretty straightforward.
Star Wars Rebels season 3 returns on January 7, 2017 on Disney XD.