Rahul Kohli (The Haunting of Bly Manor, iZombie) is pressing “mute” on the rampant rumors that he is set to play a live-action version of Star Wars Rebels animated Jedi character, Ezra Bridger.
CBS-owned ComicBook.com shared these details about the situation, which began in Fall 2020 when Kohli unexpectedly set off a firestorm of fan comments by joking about potentially playing the popular character in an upcoming streaming Star Wars series:
…[Kohli did eventually confirm] that he would not be playing the Jedi, all while jokingly dropping clues about actually being involved in such a prospect. It seems as though the actor wasn’t prepared for how much he excited fans with the idea, to the point that he hopes to trim down social media interactions involving the character.
Now, Kohli has officially “muted” all Ezra Bridger talk on his Twitter account. He posted a screenshot of the words “Ezra Bridger” in his “Muted words” list with the timeframe “Forever.” Kohli did, however, accompany his post with a kiss emoji, showing that he appreciates all of the Star Wars fan support he’s received over the past several months.
— Rahul Kohli (@RahulKohli13) January 19, 2021
As per ComicBook’s report, Kohli previously explained how the Star Wars rumors came to be in the first place:
“There was a casting that went out, there was a rumor about six months ago that Disney was looking for live-action Ezra Bridger, looking for a Middle Eastern, Asian, South Asian representation, late 20s to early 30s.”
He continued, “So that was in my wheelhouse and I was like, ‘Well, oh shit. I sent that rumor to my team and I asked them, I was like, ‘Hey, can you confirm whether or not the casting is a thing, I’d like to read if possible, throw me in a room or something, never heard back. My team was like, ‘We’ll look into it.’ And never heard back. That morning I was watching Rebels on my laptop while I was eating breakfast. I think I was watching ‘Twin Sons.’ I was just watching some old stuff and just some highlight reels and I remembered the tweet and I was going into the gym. So I did a tweet in the most harmless troll way … cause it was still out there floating somewhere that they might be doing this thing.”
So, where does this leave Ezra Bridger fans?
Knowing what we know about the storyline of the upcoming The Mandalorian spinoff series, Ahsoka, it seems incredibly likely that Bridger — who was trained in the ways of the Force by Kanan Jarrus (voiced by both Freddie Prinze, Jr. and Piotr Grabowski) in the Star Wars Rebels series — is primed to appear sooner rather than later once the Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni show premieres.
When fan-favorite Rebels and Star Wars: The Clone Wars character, Ahsoka Tano (voiced by Ashley Eckstein/played in live-action by Rosario Dawson) appeared in The Mandalorian Season 2, Episode 5 (“Chapter 13: The Jedi”), we learned that Rebels villain Grand Admiral Thrawn (voiced by Lars Mikkelsen/rumored to be played in live-action by Iron Man star Robert Downey, Jr.) is still alive and pulling strings in the galaxy — in fact, it was confirmed that he was planet Corvus Magistrate Morgan Elsbeth’s (Diana Lee Inosanto) master.
Thus, it’s expected that showrunner Favreau and his creative partner Filoni will have Ahsoka pick-up where this Mandalorian episode left off — with Tano searching the galaxy for Thrawn in a bid to save Bridger after he sacrificed himself in the Rebels series finale.
Now that Kohli has shut down the reports that he will play the popular animated character, it’s opened the door for animated series Rebels voice actor, Taylor Gray, to continue playing Bridger in live-action. There have previously been unconfirmed rumors that he will reprise the role, much as actress Katee Sackhoff did for Bo-Katan Kryze in The Mandalorian Season 2.
It’s also very possible that the World Between Worlds will return as The Mandalorian saga plays out on Disney+.
In addition to Ahsoka, which may function as a live-action Rebels sequel, there are two other confirmed Mandlorian spinoffs — Rangers of the New Republic and The Book of Boba Fett.
The Book of Boba Fett is set to debut in December 2021, with The Mandalorian Season 3, — featuring the continuation of bounty hunter Din Djarin’s (Pedro Pascal) adventures — Ahsoka, and Rangers of the New Republic are intended to premiere concurrently at a later date.
At this time, it is not yet known which series Grogu (AKA Baby Yoda AKA The Child) will next appear in. When we last saw the popular foundling, he was leaving with Luke Skywalker (a CGI de-aged version of Mark Hamill) — who swooped in with his lightsaber to save our band of unlikely heroes — to complete his Jedi training in The Mandalorian Season 2 finale episode.
There have even been some unconfirmed reports of a fourth Mandalorian-centric show, featuring Jedi Knight Skywalker and his new Padawan. No matter what happens, The Mandalorian fan community has a lot to be excited about moving forward as the Star Wars universe continues to expand.
What do you think? Should Ezra Bridger be played by Taylor Gray? Are you upset Rahul Kohli won’t be taking on the role?