For quite a while, Star Wars fans on social media have been asking Mandalorian creator Jon Favreau and executive producer Dave Filoni to bring Star Wars: The Clone Wars character Cad Bane to life.
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Bane, though not a major character in Star Wars animation, is a fan-favorite due to his ruthless bounty hunting tactics and super cool appearance. In fact, many viewers prefer him to more prominent animated Star Wars villains, such as Moralo Eval and even Count Dooku.
As Slashfilm previously pointed out about Bane:
With his big eyes and narrow, long face, Bane offers a very alien-looking alien. This, however, gets offset by his Spaghetti Western influence. Bane wears a wide brim hat and chews on toothpicks. He speaks with a dry, crisp drawl. From his opening moments, Bane steals the screen and demands attention through sheer coolness. If Clint Eastwood were a Star Wars character, this would be him.
That coolness is magnified by the fact that despite not having superpowers or anything, Cad Bane is an incredible bounty hunter, thief, kidnapper, and whatever else people pay him to be. The character repeatedly stands up to the Jedi and walks away unscathed.
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Bane — who is the subject of a popular figure in the Hasbro The Black Series Star Wars collection — first showed up in the Clone Wars Season 1 finale episode (“Hostage Crisis”) alongside Ahsoka Tano (voiced by Ashley Eckstein). His name came up again in the Clone Wars Season 2 premiere (“Holocron Heist”), when we learned that Darth Sidious/Palpatine was employing the bounty hunter to help him carry out a twisted plan called Project Harvester.
Project Harvester — which sounds like something out of Children of the Corn — involved kidnapping Force-sensitive children before they could become Jedi Padawans. Then, Palpatine saw to it that they were brainwashed under slave-like conditions, very much like the clone troopers.
Palpatine’s ultimate plan was to create an army of spies who could use the dark side of the Force to “peer into every corner of the galaxy from afar.” Pleasant, right?
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Cad Bane’s role in all of this was to steal a Jedi holocron which could be combined with a specific, sacred kyber crystal to reveal the names of all known Force-sensitive younglings.
Project Harvester was seemingly stopped when Palpatine’s Mustafar lab was destroyed, but as ScreenRant pointed out, the storyline was revived in Star Wars Rebels:
Although Order 66 and the collapse of the Jedi Order resulted in Palpatine’s loss of access to the holocron, his Inquisitors would continue Project Harvester by ruthlessly abducting Force-sensitive children in Star Wars Rebels and transporting them to a secret facility on Arkanis to be forced into serving the Empire.
What does this have to do with The Mandalorian?
“How tragic,” you might be thinking, “but what does this have to do with The Mandalorian?” Possibly quite a lot.
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Throughout The Mandalorian Season 2, Disney+ subscribers saw numerous elements (and characters) from Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels begin to play a larger role in the saga.
Both Ahsoka Tano (played in live-action by Rosario Dawson) and Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff) appeared, for example. Furthermore, we learned that Grand Admiral Thrawn is still alive and well, serving as Corvus Magistrate Morgan Elsbeth’s (Diana Lee Inosanto) master. He is expected to appear in live-action for the first time in Mandalorian spinoff series, Ahsoka.
All this to say it would certainly not be surprising for Cad Bane to be brought to life in The Mandalorian Season 3, or even in a spinoff show like The Book of Boba Fett. This is especially true if Favreau and Filoni decide to continue the storyline from The Mandalorian Season 2, Episode 4 (“Chapter 12: The Siege”).
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In that installment, titular Mandalorian Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal), Greef Karga (Carl Weathers), and Cara Dune (Gina Carano) discovered that Dr. Pershing (Omid Abtahi) and Moff Gideon (Giancarlo Esposito) were operating clone experiments at a presumably defunct Imperial base on Nevarro.
As ScreenRant assessed:
…the revelation that clone engineer Dr. Pershing was experimenting on Grogu’s [AKA The Child AKA Baby Yoda] blood…could indicate that Project Harvester may in fact have evolved into the method that will be used to return Sidious to his former power. Pershing himself explicitly states in his message to Gideon that he was only able to harvest a small amount of Grogu’s high-midichlorian count blood, leading to failed experiments and rejection of the blood from former subjects, which only lends more credence to the theory.
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At this point, nothing about Cad Bane appearing in live-action has been confirmed, but with the way Favreau and Filoni have perfected the art of fan service in their corner of the Star Wars universe, it certainly wouldn’t surprise us.
Plus, with the rumors that the reported animated Rebels sequel is now set to take place across The Mandalorian Season 3, Ahsoka, and Rangers of the New Republic, everything is primed for Bane’s appearance — and Project Harvester is the perfect way to make it happen.
What do you think? Are you ready to see a live-action version of Cad Bane arrive in the The ?in the of