ay 2 of Star Wars Celebration Europe 2023 at the ExCeL Centre in London began early on April 8, 2023, promising several panels that could bring forth news. Riding the high of the previous day's treasure trove of announcements and reveals, Day 2 ended up holding its own in terms of the excitement it produced. From the television screen with Ahsoka to the pages of books and comics with The High Republic, we've got all the day's news rounded up for you, all in one place.
The first panel of the day focused entirely on Ahsoka. After the teaser trailer dropped the day prior, there was plenty to discuss in terms of new characters, casting announcements, and behind the scenes information. Hosted by Chris Hughes, the panel first brought out executive producers Dave Filoni and Jon Favreau. Filoni, also the writer of the series, looked back at his time creating the character of Ahsoka Tano alongside George Lucas during his The Clone Wars days.
The star of the show, Ahsoka Tano herself, Rosario Dawson took the stage alongside fan-favorite astromech droid Chopper. She thanked Ahsoka's voice actress from The Clone Wars and Rebels, Ashley Eckstein, for "raising Ahsoka" and for doing a "remarkable job" in doing so. In this same vein, Dawson stressed that she wanted to get Tano's portrayal right, not only in her characterization but also in her physicality. She described an immense amount of training she did to prepare for the role, including teaching herself to be ambidextrous.
Next to join the stage were Natasha Liu Bordizzo and Mary Elizabeth Winstead, who will portray Sabine Wren and Hera Syndulla, respectively. Winstead revealed that she watched Rebels to familiarize herself with the character, explaining that she's now a General in the New Republic and emphasizing her leadership ability. Before the villains were brought out, it was revealed that the droid Huyang will be portrayed by David Tennant, who will be reprising his role from The Clone Wars.
Also joining the stage was Diana Lee Inosanto, who played Morgan Elsbeth in The Mandalorian Season 2. She described her time filming The Mandalorian, revealing that her fight with Ahsoka took one 17 hour day to film, and that George Lucas himself was present. Then, the two new antagonists came out on stage: Ivanna Sakhno and Ray Stevenson, who will play Shin Hati and Baylan Skoll, respectively. Filoni says absolutely nothing can be said about these characters without spoiling anything.
Some new announcements dropped towards the end of the panel, first of which was the composer of the series. Kevin Kiner, who also composed The Clone Wars and Rebels, will be be making the music of the show. The slate of directors was also announced: Dave Filoni, Steph Green, Peter Ramsey, Jennifer Getzinger, Geeta Patel, and Rick Famuyiwa. Lastly, the announcement everyone was waiting for: the casting reveal for Grand Admiral Thrawn. Lars Mikkelson will reprise his role as the fan-favorite Chiss, as heard previously in Rebels.
The crowd was shown exclusive footage. Our sources on the ground in London report seeing Sabine wielding a green lightsaber in addition to the very first look at Thrawn's face as portrayed by Mikkelson. With glowing red eyes, blue/black hair, and blue skin, he's as menacing and intimidating as we were hoping. When discussing Thrawn, Filoni told the crowd that he consulted author Timothy Zahn, the creator of the character in the Expanded Universe. He closes the panel by ensuring the audience that they "know how important it is to get it right."
Star Wars: The High Republic
Full Breakdown: A TON of High Republic News Just Dropped at Celebration
The Star Wars High Republic panel at Star Wars Celebration featured host Krystina Arielle and various High Republic creators, including newcomer Alyssa Wong to reveal a TON of exciting new info about The High Republic. Here's what you missed:
- They revealed that Phase II is going to culminate into something called "The Night of Sorrow," which definitely doesn't sound ominous...
- Phase III, titled "Trials of the Jedi," takes place one year after the fall of Starlight Beacon, with the Jedi being recalled to Coruscant.
- The creators revealed a comprehensive list of upcoming releases, including adult novels, middle-grade novels, and YA novels, as well as serialized fiction and comics.
- Leslye Headland, creator of the TV show "The Acolyte," joined the panel to discuss the show's connection to the High Republic era and the influence of the source material on the show's aesthetics.
- Rebecca Henderson was introduced as Vernestra Rwoh, the first High Republic character to transition from the page to live-action.
For a full breakdown of all the High Republic reveals including cover images, leaked images, and more, check out our writeup here: A TON of High Republic News Just Dropped at Celebration
What an exciting way to close out the panel! High Republic fans have much to look forward to in the next couple of years.
Clone Wars - 15 Year Anniversary Panel
Lastly, in a panel that didn't promise any news whatsoever, we did get one exciting announcement after all. While reflecting on the 15th anniversary of The Clone Wars, Dave Filoni was talking about how he had so much fun working on the first season of Tales of the Jedi that he wanted to do it again. Thus, Tales of the Jedi Season 2 was announced. No further details were released on this topic.
That does it for the news from Day 2 of Star Wars Celebration Europe 2023! What do you think of all the announcements? Interact with us on our socials @youtini_us, and be sure to join our Discord community, where you can chat in real time with fellow Star Wars fans! Keep your eyes on this space and our Twitter for more breaking news coming out of the convention.
Need a roundup of Day 1 of Star Wars Celebration 2023? We've got you. You can read about all the big announcements here.