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Film + TV

The Mandalorian: watch the first trailer for Star Wars spin-off

Words by Rob Chilton

Whenever a trailer drops from the Star Wars universe, it's always a big event and a preview of new Disney show The Mandalorian was no different. Here are five reasons why we're hyperventilating.

 

The Empire has fallen

The spin-off TV series takes place five years after the Ewoks did their little jog of joy at the end Return of the Jedi. Like Manchester United after Sir Alex Ferguson quit, The Empire is struggling to recuperate without a leader, powerfully symbolised by the gruesome image of Stormtrooper helmets on spikes. Foreboding synth music, crunching footsteps and buildings in ruin suggest a place of decay, crime and violence.

Stormtroopers in the trailer for The Mandalorian.

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Things ain't looking rosy for the Empire

Star Wars clues

New fans will love the show as a standalone piece of gripping TV. But long-time Star Wars fans (of which there are quite a few) will have felt their heads explode like the Death Star at the end of A New Hope upon seeing the trailer for The Mandalorian. There’s a poor alien chap frozen in carbonite, there’s a glimpse of a Twi’lek slave dancer who we saw in Jabba the Hutt’s palace in Return of the Jedi, there are airborne motorbikes like the ones ridden by Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia in the forest chase scene in Return of the Jedi, there are two-legged Scout Walkers, and blasters – lots of blasters.

The Mandalorian trailer.

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The Mandalorian would like a word

Jon Favreau at the helm

Anything from the brain that played a part in Swingers, Avengers and Iron Man is fine by us. Favreau compared the world of The Mandalorian to “old Samurai movies and Westerns,” and described the set-up of the show like this: “I pitched a version of a show that took place after Return of the Jedi, chaos reigns because there’s no central government.” A fan of the original 1977 Star Wars movie, Favreau added, “What was it like on Tatooine? What was going on in that cantina? That has fascinated me since I was a child, and I love the idea of the darker, freakier side of Star Wars.” So do we, Jon.

Show creator Jon Favreau.

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Show creator Jon Favreau

The main man

Starring as the titular bounty hunter is Pedro Pascal from Game of Thrones, Narcos and Kingsman: The Golden Circle. Intriguingly, the trailer does not show his face (great idea) but features several action clips of him going about his business in a lawless land while wearing some sensational armour that resembles iconic and beloved Star Wars character Boba Fett. Pascal will be backed up in the show by Carl Weathers (below), who played Apollo Creed in the Rocky franchise, and Giancarlo Esposito.

Carl Weathers.

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Rocky actor Carl Weathers pops up as Greef Carga

Wait. Is that Werner Herzog?

If you’re not familiar with the respected German documentary maker then watch a clip of him on You Tube right now. He’s made extraordinary films such as Grizzly Man, Encounters at the End of the World and Cave of Forgotten Dreams but he also has one of the most brilliant (and weirdest) voices of any person living right now. His sheer appearance in the trailer for The Mandalorian is enough to have fans reaching for their light sabres and Star Wars costumes, but his line of dialogue – “Bounty hunting is a complicated profession, don’t you agree?” – hints that the show is not going for the safe, mainstream thrills but is instead keen to delve into dark corners. Bring it on, Werner.

 

The Mandalorian streams on Disney Plus on November 12

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