Diego Luna never expected Cassian Andor to return to “Star Wars” following the Rebel spy’s heroic sacrifice in 2016’s “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.”
“I was shocked,” Luna told Variety at the “Andor” premiere in Los Angeles on Thursday. However, the titular star was ecstatic about the concept, saying that the show is “a beautiful journey, and an inspiring one.”
“I think ‘Rogue One’ is a film about an event, but you don’t get to know much about these characters,” Luna said. “This long format [is] a great way to go deep into who they are and why they make the choices they make.”
On his approach to Cassian’s origin story, “Andor” creator and showrunner Tony Gilroy wanted the character to “be far away from the accomplished warrior-spy that he was in ‘Rogue [One].’”
“I wanted to watch the education and evolution of a revolutionary, really,” Gilroy said. “How does somebody become politicized? How do they learn to understand [how] to make a serious commitment to it? How does it change their life, [and] what does it cost them?”
Set five years before the events of “Rogue One,” Season 1 explores the formation of the Rebel Alliance, along with Cassian’s development from thief to Rebel hero. As previously announced, the prequel series will conclude with its second season.
Asked about “Andor’s” limited run, star Genevieve O’Reilly believed it was “the right call.”
“If we start somewhere so wildly different where ‘Rogue One’ is, and you only have two seasons to do it in, I think it really focuses the storytelling,” O’Reilly continued. “It could just be a hotbed of creativity.”
Gilroy said “there was nothing bittersweet” about the show’s finite nature. “It’s really good to have limitations,” he explained. “It’s very, very helpful to know where we’re gonna go.”
“Andor” premieres its first three episodes on Disney Plus Sept. 21.