Diego Luna Says Andor Was Meant To Be Different From Other Star Wars Titles

Rogue One prequel Andor may be the fourth live-action Star Wars series to be released via streaming, but it sets it apart from the others.

For a narrative universe of space battles and grand confrontations, Andoro is another beast. It’s a rougher and more grounded show, and that’s very intentional.

“The idea was that we weren’t just allowed to be different, we were meant to be different,” Diego Luna told news.com.au.

“It’s Like What” Rogue One represents for the world of movies and saga, [which was that] it was the first standalone [film]. It had to be his own [thing]and we as a series, have the same goal.

“It will have a bit of that dark and gritty tone that” Rogue One has. There’s action and adventure, and the scope of Star Wars is there. But at the same time, we can give ourselves the chance to explore a more intimate approach to the characters.”

Andor does feel that it has a different ambition to The Mandalorian and Obi-Wan Kenobi. Like Rogue One before that it feels messier, like it’s hungry, like it wants to struggle in the dirt and not float in the sky among the stars.

Set in the five years before Luna’s Cassian Andor joins the… Rogue One mission to steal the Death Star plans, Andoro is a kind of origin story for the thief turned spy. He jumped in Rogue One as a fully formed character, but where did Cassian come from, how did he get involved in the resistance?

These are the questions the series tries to answer over two seasons. There is, just like Rogue Onea beginning and an end.

“It’s not a series that can go on forever, of course you know what the end is.”

A prequel will often encounter the stakes problem. Knowing where the character should end up will drain a lot of the tension.

Take for example, Obi-Wan Kenobi. The climax of the confrontation between Obi-Wan and Darth Vader had the tension of a Teletubbies episode. The lightsabers looked cool, but you knew neither of them was in danger, either physically or emotionally.

Andor builds a universe that relies more on an ensemble whose fate is not so clear. Luna says his character’s name may be in the title, but it would be “unfair” to think the show is about him.

“There are so many characters in this show. It’s an ensemble piece because the long format also gives you the chance to explore many, many storylines.”

Despite his modesty, Luna is the legacy star here (although co-star Genevieve O’Reilly is reprising her role as Mon Mothma) and he has the executive producer credit to back it up.

“It feels great to have the opportunity to be a part of this project from the beginning,” revealed Luna. “In a sense, on Rogue One, I felt like I was being thrown into a plane taking off before I sat there. And now I’m here from the beginning.

“That is a beautiful experience for me, a learning experience that I will remember forever.

“It’s interesting to be an executive producer on a show that you end up acting in because you can start from afar with a very objective view.

“It’s really useful for me because it gives me freedom when I’m filming as an actor. I know the places, I come to a set and I have known the set since it was a drawing. I’m not responding to it for the first time. I know why decisions were made and the logic behind each decision. That is freedom for an actor.”

A bonus is also what Luna says about Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton, Bourne .’s Legacy) brings complexity to the series – “He doesn’t live in good and evil or black and white, he spends his time writing about the gray areas”.

Andor was not on his radar when he applied and then finished Rogue One. Given the magnitude of that Star Wars movie, it’s not a world he thought he would revisit.

“[I thought] that was it for me. I could go back to my life and do the projects I was doing. And it was great.”

But now it’s back – and in a better position to handle all the delights and drama, expectations and demands of Star Wars fandom.

“I feel like I’m much more mature and I understand the language and the dynamics of this system better so that I can enjoy more, that I have more control over what I’m doing.

“When you talk about the fan base and the anticipation that a project like this evokes, it’s amazing to me, that’s what you’re looking for.

“You want people to hear the stories you want to tell. You want to know that there is a need for what you are doing. And the love that fans have for this universe is unique. It’s like nothing else and I feel blessed to be part of something that means so much to so many.”

Andor can be seen on Disney+ from Wednesday 21 September

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