Friday 9 September 2022

Eman Esfandi cast as the live-action Ezra in STAR WARS

Lucasfilm have announced that Eman Esfandi will be playing the live-action version of Star Wars character Ezra Bridger in their upcoming Ahsoka series.

The character of Ezra, voiced by Taylor Gray, was introduced in the first episode of Star Wars: Rebels in 2014. Ezra is a native of the planet Lothal, which has been occupied by the Empire. Ezra performs minor acts of rebellion and sabotage against the Empire before being recruited by Kanan Jarrus to join a rebel cell led by himself and Hera Syndulla. Kanan, an ex-Padawan, also discovers Ezra's budding Force powers and trains him in the ways of the Jedi, although Kanan's own incomplete training (and guilt for the death of his master during the Clone Wars) makes this a complicated affair. By the end of the series, Ezra has become an adept Force-user and a powerful ally of the Rebellion. In the final episode of Rebels, Ezra helps defeat the Imperial Grand Admiral Thrawn in a battle on and above Lothal, but in the process both Ezra and Thrawn disappear and have not been seen since. A post-Return of the Jedi epilogue reveals that Ahsoka and Ezra's good friend Sabine Wren are setting out to explore the galaxy to look for Thrawn and Ezra. Events in The Mandalorian suggest this search is still incomplete some five years later.

Esfani is a relative newcomer, having built up a steady stream of stage credits and appears in shorts, as well as in the film The Inspection and recent biopic King Richard. He has also directed several short films.

Esfani will join Rosario Dawson as Ahsoka Tano (reprising the role from The Mandalorian) and Natasha Liu Bordizzo as Sabine Wren for the cast of Ahsoka, with Hayden Christensen also poised to return as Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader, presumably for flashback scenes. Ivanna Sakhno, Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Ray Stevenson have also been cast in undisclosed roles. Rebels characters Hera Syndulla and psychotic droid Chopper are also due to appear, but their casting has not been announced so far (it is possible that Ahsoka writer-producer and Rebels creator Dave Filoni will return to "voice" Chopper, as he did throughout Rebels).

Star Wars: Ahsoka is due to air on Disney+ in 2023.

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