Light spoilers for the latest episode of The Mandalorian – “Chapter 10: The Passenger” – lie ahead.
Star Wars is a franchise that spans a number of generations, as many have been enjoying characters like Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader and Chewbacca for decades now. So you can imagine that people have a lot of emotions tied up in the franchise. And this becomes even more poignant for fans who grew up and actually became a part of the Star Wars family. This is exactly the case for Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, who guest-starred on the latest episode of The Mandalorian.
Paul Sun-Hyung Lee popped up in the most recent episode as new republic pilot Carson Teva, who encounters Mando when he tries to flee from him and his X-Wing comrade. It turns out the actor is an old friend of Mandalorian director Deborah Chow, who informed him that she was working on the show. She also told Lee that series producer Dave Filoni was a fan of his and wanted to write a part for him. As a lifelong fan of the franchise, Lee was more than eager to join the series.
Ahead of filming, Lee had to be fitted for his costume, helmet and all. However, because his helmet was still being painted, he had to try on another one – which just happened to be a prop from the original Star Wars movie. This led to a pretty surreal moment for the actor:
I look at it because I know the pattern. I said, 'Is that Bigg's helmet?' And they said, 'Yeah, how do you know?' Because I'm a nerd. Because this is one of the first movies I remember seeing with my dad, with my sister — and I was not expecting to hold, let alone wear a piece of my history on my head.
Not only is Paul Sun-Hyung Lee savvy when it comes to Star Wars lore, but he’s also a cosplayer, who even designed his own version of an X-Wing fighter suit. He went onto tell CBC that wearing the outfit in an official capacity was a dream come true:
I was five years old again. I got transported to that galaxy far, far away, [I've spent] my entire life watching the movies. To finally be there, to be sitting there, didn't want to leave.
Lee is far from the only Star Wars actor to get pumped about their new duds. Gwendoline Christie was hyped when she first gazed upon her Captain Phasma armor. John Boyega was also excited when he learned that Finn would be donning some new threads for The Rise of Skywalker.
You can’t help but be happy for Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, as he gets to live out a dream that so many of us can only fantasize about. His character survived the events of his Mandalorian episode so, hopefully, he’ll make a return at some point.
The Mandalorian Season 2 drops new episodes every Friday on Disney+.