Typically, if an actor is playing a character under a mask or helmet, you’d imagine that actor is actually under that mask or helmet. Logical, right? But in the Star Wars universe, it is often not the case. Darth Vader was notably performed by David Prowse physically and James Earl Jones vocally in the original trilogy. And more recently, as researched by our very own Liz Shannon Miller for Vulture, we learned that Pedro Pascal rarely physically performed the role of The Mandalorian for the Disney+ series on season 1. Instead, stunt performers Brendan Wayne and Lateef Crowder tended to play our masked bounty hunter, with Pascal dubbing in the voice later. Will this continue to be the case for season 2 of the show?
According to a Pascal interview with Variety, not as much. However, it’s important to note that Pascal didn’t even mind not being the literal man behind the mask on season 1 (he was busy shooting Wonder Woman 1984 and rehearsing for a Broadway run of King Lear). “If there were more than just a couple of pages of a one-on-one scene, I did feel uneasy about not, in some instances, being able to totally author that,” said Pascal of the performance tactics used. “But it was so easy in such a sort of practical and unexciting way for it to be up to them. When you’re dealing with a franchise as large as this, you are such a passenger to however they’re going to carve it out. It’s just so specific. It’s ‘Star Wars.'”
As for the “not as much” of season 2: Pascal did, indeed, share with Variety that “he was on the set far more, though he still sat out many of Mando’s stunts,” which feels like a more traditional arrangement for a live-action sci-fi/action role. But Pascal still feels humble about his impact on the show; when asked what it feels like to be “the face of one of the biggest pop-culture franchises in the world,” he responded cheekily: “I mean, come on, there isn’t a face! If you want to say, ‘You’re the silhouette’ — which is also a team effort — then, yeah… Can we just cut the shit and talk about the Child?” So two things are now confirmed: Pascal is physically in The Mandalorian season 2 more, and he’s as obsessed with Baby Yoda as we are.
The Mandalorian season 2 comes to Disney+ October 30. Check out some new posters here.