Fans Want Favreau & Filoni to Cast RDJ in ‘Mandalorian’ Spinoff

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rdj as grand admiral thrawn

Credit: 'Star Wars' Quarter/Twitter

Robert Downey Jr., whose name is synonymous with the Marvel Cinematic Universe — in which he has long played Iron Man/Tony Stark in both the Avengers movies and standalone Iron Man trilogy — is now making waves with a new fandom.

Iron Man 3 with Robert Downey Jr
Credit: Marvel Studios

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Star Wars fans are asking Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni to consider casting RDJ in one of their numerous Mandalorian spinoffs. The Mandalorian — featuring the adventures of Grogu (AKA The Child AKA Baby Yoda) and Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) — has proven to be immensely popular.

Lucasfilm has confirmed three spinoff series, Ahsoka, Rangers of the New Republic, and The Book of Boba Fett.  One series, in particular, has the Star Wars fan community buzzing on social media. Fans are asking Favreau and Filoni to give RDJ the role of Grand Admiral Thrawn in Ahsoka, which is expected to expound upon Ahsoka Tano’s (Rosario Dawson) storyline from The Mandalorian Season 2, Episode 5 (“Chapter 13: The Jedi”), in which she discovers that Thrawn is still alive and well, giving orders to Corvus Magistrate Morgan Elsbeth (Diana Lee Inosanto).

Let’s take a look at Twitter’s response to the recent rumor that RDJ is being considered for role within the Star Wars universe.

The Star Wars Quarter shared a fan edit of Downey Jr. as Thrawn, with the caption:

So I heard a rumour that Robert Downey Jr will be joining the #StarWars universe.. if this is true.. there is a god and apparently he may be playing this guy..please let this be true!! #StarWarsfan #TheMandolorian

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Sonny P. excitedly shared two rumors in one — that Keanu Reeves may also be appearing in a galaxy far, far away, perhaps as fan-favorite Sith Lord Darth Revan:

Robert Downey Jr and Keanu Reeves joining star wars expanding roster?!

Another post, from FUSED, shared the opinion that, while RDJ could certainly play Thrawn, he would prefer him in another role:

If the rumours are true about #RobertDowneyJr joining #StarWars as #Thrawn, I’d be happy with that. That’s said [sic: That said], I’d see him more as a Talon Karrde character.

FUSED went on to suggest another potential Thrawn actor:

Ideally someone like Richard E Grant would make a better Thrawn. Tall, imposing, crystal clear accent and singular vision.

Related: Gina Carano Is “In Love” With ‘Star Wars,’ Won’t Be Silenced

Michael Sabat also shared a Tweet with his choice for Thrawn:

Lots of rumors going around that Robert Downey Jr. is in talks to play the big baddie in the Star Wars universe led by Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni. I would love to see RDJ but this here, Michael Fassbender is my choice for Grand Admiral Thrawn.

Jatin Kashiv shared his excitement about the potential for the former Avenger to finally join the Star Wars universe, writing:

So, it’s rumored that #RobertDowneyJunior would be playing Grand Admiral #Thrawn in the #Jonfavreau and #Davefloni #Starwars series!!! Man that’s insane I’m A #starwar fan! And having RDJ is just insane. Hey #GeeksandGamers please Help if you know more!@RobertDowneyJr @starwars

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Right now, although rumors run rampant about RDJ’s involvment in showrunner Jon Favreau and executive producer Dave Filoni’s ever-expanding Mandalorian saga, Lucasfilm and Disney have not confirmed anything about the A-list actor appearing in the hit franchise.

Although RDJ is undoubtedly talented, his connection to Iron Man and Marvel Studios could be challenging to overcome in another franchise that falls under the Walt Disney Company banner — the Star Wars creative team would have to make sure that Downey Jr.’s character was different enough from both the superhero and Tony Stark to distance him from his MCU reputation.

Casting the famed actor as Grand Admiral Thrawn is actually a viable solution. Thrawn’s appearance and cool, calculating demeanor — a supervillain instead of a hero — is completely opposite of the charming Iron Man personality RDJ has become known for among Marvel fans.

Some rumors have also indicated that Star Wars Rebels voice actor Lars Mikkelsen will be cast as Thrawn in live-action, similarly to how Katee Sackhoff was cast as Bo-Katan Kryze. These reports remain unconfirmed.

mandalorian women
Credit: Lucasfilm/Disney

Related: ‘The Mandalorian’ Season 3: Everything We Actually Know

With the Skywalker Saga officially drawing to a close with Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker (2019), Disney has largely turned its attention to the small screen and the continuation of The Mandalorian saga for the future of Star Wars.

Although no one has spoken about RDJ in conjunction with a Star Wars film, there also remains the possibility, of course, that Thrawn — or any other character he may be cast as — could also show up on the big screen.

Another popular Hollywood celebrity, Chris Pine, has also recently been connected to a new Star Wars movie after appearing in Patty Jenkins’s Wonder Woman 1984. Pine stated that the script for the director’s Star Wars: Rogue Squadron (2023) film is “really, really great,” sparking as-yet unconfirmed rumors that he may be cast in the film.

What are your thoughts? Should Favreau and Filoni heed the call to cast RDJ in Star Wars?


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