Actress Rosario Dawson made her debut Friday (Nov. 27) on the hit Disney+ series The Mandalorian, and the reaction online has been enthusiastic.
The long-awaited introduction to fan-favorite character Ahsoka Tano has been one of the most talked about casting choices between Star Wars fans since rumors started swirling earlier this year about Dawson possibly landing the role. Variety confirmed the casting in March.
In the Star Wars universe, Ahsoka Tano is the apprentice of Anakin Skywalker. Before Dawson’s live-action portrayal, Ahsoka only appeared in animated Star Wars projects like the 2008 film and TV show Star Wars: The Clone Wars and the TV series Star Wars: Rebels.
Spoiler Alert: During her debut on Episode 5 of Season 2, Ahsoka teams up with Mando to help liberate the city of Calodan from Imperial occupation. She also communicates with The Child (colloquially known as Baby Yoda) and learns he is a young Jedi apprentice named Grogu.
In a recent interview with Vanity Fair, Dawson revealed that her path to being cast in the role started when she was “fan-casted” on Twitter. Dawson was interested from the start.
“People have been fan-casting me on all kinds of things, like She-Hulk and stuff,” Dawson told VF. “And I always just think it’s really fun, because I get to see myself in different kinds of art.”
During production, Dawson got the opportunity to meet Star Wars creator George Lucas on set (an experience she described as nerve-racking). She hopes viewers fall in love with the live-action version of Ahsoka as much as she did.
“[Ahsoka’s] just been finding her way,” Dawson said. “Since the very beginning, the way that has been pulling her is to be vigilant, and to be brave, and to be wise, and to always have her eye set on rooting out evil. She represents truly the best of the Jedi.”