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The Mandalorian changed the face of Star Wars television in 2019 as the first live-action series in the franchise, and fans were quickly clamoring for franchise favorites to appear on the Disney+ project. Although Season 1 held off on including any of the biggest names from Star Wars, Season 2 has reportedly cast none other than the beloved Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels character Ahsoka Tano, and none other than Rosario Dawson will play her.
Ahsoka was last seen chronologically in the epilogue to Star Wars Rebels, taking place after Return of the Jedi and proving once again that Ahsoka can seemingly survive anything. Slashfilm cites two independent sources confirming Rosario Dawson's casting as the popular Clone Wars and Rebels character. This would be Ahsoka's first appearance in live-action, although she did have a voice cameo in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
The live-action debut of Ahsoka in The Mandalorian may come as a surprise to many, but Rosario Dawson's casting follows the actress showing interest in playing the character. Way back in early 2017, Dawson revealed she'd be on board to bring Ahsoka to live-action, and she continued to campaign for the role. As recently as mid-January 2020, Dawson was on Twitter talking about wanting to play Ahsoka.
In case you have your doubts that Rosario Dawson, best known on television for her role as Claire Temple on the various Netflix Marvel shows, could be a pretty awesome actress to bring Ahsoka to live-action, some fan art shows just what she could look like. Ahsoka is a member of the Togruta species in the Star Wars universe, so Dawson's work on The Mandalorian would presumably include a fair amount of makeup, prosthetics, and/or special effects.
Given that Baby Yoda was a puppet rather than created by CGI, perhaps the show would continue preferring practical effects over CGI in creating its non-humans. For live-action, Rosario Dawson would be taking over for Ashley Eckstein, who has voiced Ahsoka ever since the character debuted in the Clone Wars movie back in 2008. Eckstein reprised the role for various projects, including the aforementioned Star Wars Rebels, Rise of Skywalker, and even Star Wars Forces of Destiny.
Ahsoka appearing on The Mandalorian could mean Star Wars Rebels fans get some answers to questions left after the Rebels series finale in 2018. Ahsoka and Sabine Wren took off on a journey to try and find Ezra Bridger. With The Mandalorian taking place several years after Return of the Jedi, could Ahsoka's reported appearance in Season 2 also mean an appearance from Sabine Wren?
Sabine's voice actress showed interest in playing Sabine in live-action. Alternately, could Ahsoka still be on her search for Ezra? I for one felt that Ezra would be a great fit for Season 2 of The Mandalorian based on how Season 1 ended. Unfortunately, The Mandalorian won't return for Season 2 until fall 2020.
The good news is that Ahsoka can currently be seen in new episodes of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, which is currently releasing its final season on Disney+. Be sure to tune in to see Ahsoka's journey in the final days before Revenge of the Sith! If you want to see some of Ahsoka in the period shortly before The Mandalorian, be sure to check out Star Wars Rebels, also available streaming on Disney+.