Grand Admiral Thrawn Is Coming To Star Wars Live Action

grand admiral thrawn Dave Filoni

Lucasfilm is looking to cast Grand Admiral Thrawn, bringing the brilliant strategist into the world of Star Wars live action.

It looks like another character from the animated Star Wars shows, such as Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels, will be joining the world of live action. According to The DisnInsider, Disney and Lucasfilm is looking to cast a live action Grand Admiral Thrawn for future projects.


While there is no word on what the project might be, there is a rumor of Thrawn getting his own series. Thrawn is the latest in a slew of characters from the animated series that will be coming to the live action world, including Ahsoka Tano, Ezra Bridger, and Bo-Katan.

The Deal With Grand Admiral Thrawn

star wars clone wars - grand admiral thrawn

Thrawn, known by most from his time hunting the Ghost Crew on Rebels was a fan favorite originally from the Legends works. He was created by Timothy Zahn and debuted in the 1991 novel, Heir to the Empire, the first in what would come to be known as the Thrawn trilogy. In 2012 Disney acquired Lucasfilm and the Star Wars franchise, which resulted in all material other than the films, the series Star Wars: The Clone Wars, and film novelizations to no longer be considered part of official Star Wars canon. Instead, they became known as Legends works. 

Grand Admiral Thrawn was brought into the current Star Wars canon when he debuted on the third season of Rebels. Thrawn had a tough act to follow, with Vader being the big bad of the second season – but his strategic military mind, his interest in the art of those he had conquered, and his cunning made him an interesting, complex villain that fans loved. Thrawn was a fantastic foil for the Ghost Crew slowly getting one step closer to capturing the group of rebels every time they crossed paths.

He eventually was ensnared by the Purrgil, and both he and Ezra Bridger were dragged to the depths of space with their fates left to be unknown. However, with Ezra Bridger and now Thrawn being set to have their live action debut, fans may yet find out what happened to the pair.

Thrawn creator Timothy Zahn wrote a new Thrawn trilogy, beginning with the novel Star Wars: Thrawn in 2017. In the Legends works, Thrawn’s story primarily takes place after Return of the Jedi, but his story in the canon Star Wars work is set before A New Hope. Which makes sense given the character disappeared at the end of Rebels before the original film trilogy takes place. 

A New Dawn of Thrawn

The new Thrawn trilogy explores Thrawn’s origins, covering many years between Thrawn’s first encounter with the Empire and when he begins hunting the Ghost Crew on Rebels. The first book of the trilogy Star Wars: Thrawn covers his origins as an exiled Chiss warrior who pledges his loyalty to the Emperor and shows how his skills as a tactician and his cunning help him rise through the ranks of the Imperial Military.

Thrawn also trains his translator turned aide-de-camp, Ensign Eli Vanto, in the art of war. Although he is framed as an exile, the Chiss Ascendancy actually helped him fake his exile in order to discover whether the Empire would be an ally or a threat which leads to split loyalties.

In Thrawn: Alliances, the focus is on Thrawn working with Darth Vader, whom he is introduced to at the end of Star Wars: Thrawn. Thrawn: Alliances is set after the events of the third season of Star Wars: Rebels. Thrawn and Vader are sent on a mission by Palpatine to investigate a disturbance in the Force. It also features the first canon appearance of the planet Batuu, which is the setting for the Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. It is revealed that Thrawn had encountered and worked with Anakin Skywalker during the Clone Wars and he is one of the few people who recognizes the former Jedi as the powerful Sith he has become. 

In the final book in the trilogy, Thrawn: Treason, he is forced to choose between his loyalties to the Empire or to the Chiss Ascendancy when he learns his people are in grave danger. A new trilogy, written by Zahn and featuring Thrawn, was announced at 2019 New York Comic Con. The first book in the Thrawn Ascendancy trilogy, Book I: Chaos Rising, is set to debut in October and you can pre-order it now

Thrawn is a fan favorite character that has transitioned from the Legends stories into the new Star Wars canon seamlessly and it looks like his story will continue to expand. More and more characters are migrating from the world of animation into live action, with Ahsoka Tano and Bo-Katan set to appear in season two of The Mandalorian and rumors of Captain Rex possibly making an appearance as well. The news about casting for Ezra Bridger and Grand Admiral Thrawn makes it looks like their disappearance at the end of Rebels may not be shrouded in mystery for long. 

Are you excited to see Thrawn come to the world of live action? Who do you think should play Thrawn? Do you hope to see what happened to Thrawn and Ezra after the finale of Rebels? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or on our social media.

Source: TheDisInsider


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Caitlin Tyrrell

Features Manager & Producer with The Illuminerdi. Caitlin has a deep love for storytelling of every kind. She is a huge fan of television, animation, and film, but Star Wars, the MCU, and Critical Role hold a special place in her heart.