The casting news for The Mandalorian season 2 just doesn’t stop, now with Katee Sackhoff reportedly cast as Bo-Katan Kryze. She joins Rosario Dawson, cast as Ahsoka Tano, and Temuera Morrison, cast as Boba Fett. (Though he could also be a surviving clone trooper.) Yet, what makes Sackhoff’s casting special is that she is the first The Clone Wars voice actor to be cast as the live-action version of her character. Luckily, Dave Filoni and the rest of The Clone Wars team designed the character of Bo-Katan Kryze to look like Sackhoff. The Battlestar Galactica alum joins The Mandalorian after a recurring role on The Flash. So, genre fans are certainly familiar with Sackhoff, though they may be less familiar with Bo-Katan.
Bo-Katan Kyrze is an important character, and it really makes sense that Katee Sackhoff would portray her in The Mandalorian season 2. Bo-Katan is the sister of a former ruler of Mandalore, the Mandalorian home planet, and a “terrorist” from the Clone War era. In fact, she was crucial to kickstarting the Siege of Mandalore that served as the setting for the final episodes of The Clone Wars.
This marks the first time that a Star Wars animation character is portrayed in live-action by their voice actor. The closest they came before was when Ray Park reprised the role of Maul in Solo: A Star Wars Story, but Sam Witwer provided the voice. (In The Phantom Menace Park played Maul, but Peter Serafinowicz delivered the character’s only two lines.)
While there has been no official confirmation from Lucasfilm, a tweet from Sackhoff suggests its true. In fact, the replies to the November 15th tweet guess at what she was talking about.
“Gotta say today was pretty much a career high for me. One day soon you’ll understand what I mean but for right now, just know that it’s the coolest thing ever!!!”
She’s also been asked about The Mandalorian in interviews, and her non-denial denials have led many to speculate she’ll appear. Filming for the second season took place in early 2021, but casting for season two could have been happening in November.
Why It’s a Big Deal Katee Sackhoff Will Bring Bo-Katan to The Mandalorian Season 2
Image via Lucasfilm
One of the most interesting things about this news is that Bo-Katan’s arcs in The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels show us a very different side of Mandalorian life. In The Clone Wars, the Mandalorians are pacifists, refusing to get involved in the war. A militant sub-group known as Death Watch opposes this policy, and Bo-Katan was the second-in-command. (To Pre Viszla, a character voiced by none other than Jon Favreau.) Also, her sister Satine was the Duchess of Mandalore and the figurehead of the pacifism movement.
In The Mandalorian fighters wearing the Death Watch armor are the ones who rescued young Din Djarin from battle droids. Yet, the Mandlorians we’ve met before never once mentioned “the way,” and they frequently remove their helmets and armor. Simply put, Bo-Katan represents a very different kind of Mandalorian from the one we’ve seen in Star Wars thus far. Perhaps we’ll learn that “the way” is a relatively new development, especially since the Mandalorians, under Clan Viszla, sided with the Empire leading to the infamous “purge” Din Djarin and his fellow Mandalorians talk about.
Also, Bo-Katan was the last person seen with the Darksaber before Moff Gideon used it to cut his way out of his TIE Fighter during the season finale. She was supposed to unite the disparate Mandalorian clans with it, so we’ll likely learn how she lost it to Gideon.
Katee Sackhoff, Bo Katan, and the Rest Show Dave Filoni’s Hand In The Mandalorian Season 2
Image via Lucasfilm
With the exception of Boba Fett, all of the recent casting news for The Mandalorian represent characters created by Dave Filoni. Ahsoka Tano, Bo-Katan Kryze, and even Sabine Wren (from Rebels) are all characters whose stories were Filoni’s ultimate responsibility. Even Boba Fett got essentially all of his canon character development from stories in The Clone Wars. (In fact, I suspect we might even get to see Duros bounty hunter Cad Bane in live action.) As he did with Rebels, Filoni is able to use The Mandalorian as the vehicle for continuing or completing these characters’ stories.
The benefit is twofold. First, Filoni gets to “play” with his favorite “toys.” His knowledge and love of these characters means that they won’t just be shoehorned in to the narrative. If they are appearing in The Mandalorian, they have a good reason to be there. The second benefit is that these characters help connect the series to the larger universe. People can create attachments to these characters and may be more inclined to follow their stories in other Star Wars projects.
If anything, the success of The Clone Wars and Rebels shows that we can have meaningful, enjoyable Star Wars stories outside of the Skywalker saga. Yet, with the addition of these legacy characters, the stories are not so disconnected as to feel entirely separate.
What do you think? Are you happy that Katee Sackhoff will bring Bo-Katan Kryze to The Mandalorian season 2? Share your thoughts and theories about what will happen in the comments below.
Featured image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr
Joshua M. Patton is a father, veteran, and writer living in Pittsburgh, PA. The first books he read on his own were comics, and he's loved the medium ever since. He is the greatest star-pilot in the galaxy, a cunning warrior, and a good friend. His book "What I Learned: Stories, Essays, and More" is available in print from Amazon and from all electronic booksellers.