After the huge success of The Mandalorian, Disney+ is going all in on Star Wars projects - both films and shows alike. One of the projects that is currently in the works is the series Andor, which will follow the Rebel adventures of Cassian Andor, who was introduced in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The series has been a big investment for Disney+, so Star Wars fans should hope it will see the same kind of success that The Mandalorian has. Only time will tell.
Given the nature of the Star Wars fandom, there are plenty of rumors and false reports being thrown around all the time, so sometimes it is difficult to stay on top of what is and is not really happening. With that in mind, we compiled a list of everything that we definitely know about the Andor series.
Diego Luna will return as Cassian Andor
Most importantly, Diego Luna will in fact be reprising his role as Cassian Andor in the series (which is fitting given the title). He will portray a younger and more morally grey hero during the early days of the Rebel Alliance. Luna has expressed his excitement for the opportunity, saying, "Going back to the Star Wars universe is very special for me. I have so many memories of the great work we did together and the relationships I made throughout the journey. We have a fantastic adventure ahead of us, and this new exciting format will give us the chance to explore this character more deeply." (Spoiler alert for Rogue One) Notably, Cassian Andor died at the end of Rogue One, so it's probably very exciting to return to a franchise that killed him off. Luna went on to say that we wanted to come back to Star Wars so that he could impress his son. He said, "I'm happy to go back to a galaxy far, far away. It's a dream come true. I'll tell you how it felt. I was the coolest dad when I told my kids I was doing that film. When my son, that's the one that connects the most with this universe, was watching the film he went, 'My dad is the best!' Then we die at the end. My son just looked at me... 'But you died.' So it's like, 'Well, you're cool but not that cool!' And now I can tell him I can be back on his top 10 list of coolness."
Alan Tudyk will not return as K-2SO for the first season
Originally, Andor's sidekick K-2SO was believed to return for the series, but Alan Tudyk (who plays the sassy droid) has confirmed that he will not appear in the first season. When asked by Collider if he would appear in the show, Tudyk said, "They're shooting it right now, I'm not in it. But, if it stays on the air, stories keep getting told, I'll end up in there." This certainly implies that the plan is to keep Andor going for as long as possible. And with K-2SO being one of the most beloved characters of Rogue One, it only makes sense to bring him back into the franchise eventually.
Is Andor a Rogue One prequel?
To state the obvious, Andor will serve as a prequel to Rogue One, and it will dive deeper into Cassian's backstory and motivations. In Rogue One, Cassian explained to Jyn Erso that he done regrettable things for the Rebel Alliance, so the show will likely dive into that a bit. Mainstream Star Wars stories have shied away from showing the ugly side of the Rebels (aside from killing millions of stormtroopers, that is), so it will be interesting to see just how far the show will go in its portrayal.
How many episodes is Andor?
Although no official confirmation has been given, the first season of Andor will consist of twelve episodes, which will be a slight deviation from previous Disney+ originals. Both seasons of The Mandalorian had eight episodes each, and the Marvel shows have had no more than nine episodes thus far. It is possible that the episodes of Andor will be shorter in length in comparison to The Mandalorian, but that is only pure speculation.
There are plans to make multiple seasonsIf this has not been made obvious yet, Disney+ is currently hoping to make multiple seasons of Andor, much like The Mandalorian. If Andor goes back far enough, there is certainly plenty of material that they could cover. Twelve episodes is a lot, but this period of time within the Star Wars universe is ripe for endless stories, so it would be smart for Disney+ to utilize it. If the first season of Andor is successful enough, there will undoubtedly be multiple seasons (as well as the return of K-2SO), so Star Wars fans should watch it if they want to see more.
Filming Andor began in London in December 2020
The show has been under production for about half a year now as filming actually began back in December of last year. Filming is still underway, and there has been no word on when it might wrap up. Additionally, because it is filming in London, there is no indication that it is using the same screen stage as The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett, so practical sets will be used for the show.
Genevieve O'Reilly will reprise her role as Mon Mothma in Andor
Reprising her role from Rogue One (and a deleted scene from Revenge of the Sith), Genevieve O'Reilly has been confirmed to return to the Star Wars universe as Mon Mothma, the Rebel commander. This makes sense as Mothma is a central figure to the Rebel Alliance, and she will likely work directly with Cassian in the show. Mothma is also close friends with Leia's father, Bail Organa (played by Jimmy Smits), but there has been no word on whether he will appear or not.
Shoretroopers will make a re-appearance in Andor
Leaked set photos have confirmed the return of Shoretroopers, which made their debut in Rogue One. The brown Stormtroopers were famously the main combatants at the battle on Scarif, so it's possible there will be a return to the beach planet. However, it could also be that Cassian battles some Shoretroopers at a different location as well.
Cassian will have a slightly different appearance. Set photos revealed that Cassian's outfit will be a bit different for the show, which is fair considering that it takes place at a different time. In the photos, Cassian dons a more subtle outfit as opposed to his signature bomber jacket in Rogue One. He also appears to be more innocent and shaken, which will certainly be of importance to the show. I would expect the show to gradually guide Cassian into the morally gray world of espionage and violence.
Many A-list actors have joined the cast of Andor
A slew of major A-listers have joined the cast for the show - all of which have not yet been named. First, Stellan Skarsgard (Thor, Chernobyl) joined the cast last year in an undefined role. Later, Adria Arjona (6 Underground, Good Omens), Fiona Shaw (Harry Potter, Killing Eve), Denise Gough (The Witcher video games), and Kyle Soller (101 Dalmation Street) also joined the ever-growing cast. None of the actors have been given public character details, so we can only guess what kind of characters they will be playing. Keep in mind that this will take place during the early days of the reign of the Empire, so these actors will likely be playing either Rebels or allies of the Empire.
Forest Whitaker is rumored to reprise his role as Saw Gerrera in Andor
In a recent interview, Stellan Skarsgard let slip that he worked with Forest Whitaker, who famously played Saw Gerrera in Rogue One. Disney+ has not confirmed this report, but Forest Whitaker's return makes sense given his place within Star Wars lore. Gerrera first appeared in the Clone Wars show and quickly became a fan favorite, later being recast for a live action version in Rogue One. Gerrera is a pivotal character for the Rebel Alliance, and we may see plenty of him in the Andor series.
Is Ben Mendelsohn as Orson Krennic in the Andor series?
This is more speculation, but Mendelsohn has been heavily rumored to return in the Andor series as Director Orson Krennic. He oversaw the construction of the Death Star, so he is an extremely important figure for the Empire. Like Gerrera, Krennic's return to the Star Wars universe would make a lot of sense for a show like Andor, and we could learn a lot more about his background and motivations. Krennic quickly became a beloved Star Wars villain when Rogue One came out, so bringing him back into the fold would be a smart decision by Disney+.
One dead Rogue One character will returnSome recent set photos confirmed the return of the actor Duncan Pow, who played the Rebel Sergeant Ruescott Melshi in Rogue One. Initially, the actor was thought to be Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. alum Nick Blood, but further set photos revealed it to be Pow. His return makes a lot of sense given his history with the Rebel Alliance, and he could potentially get much more screen time in the show. It's exciting when Star Wars gives more opportunities to minor characters - like Bail Organa and Mon Mothma. Perhaps Sergeant Melshi will have a much larger role in this project.
Will any other Rogue One characters make an appearance?
Although it's certainly possible, Star Wars fans should not expect any other Rogue One characters to appear in the first season of Andor. The most likely would be Riz Ahmed's character Bohdi (given his ties to the Rebel Alliance), but he is likely booked after nabbing an Oscar nomination. Characters like Felicity Jones' Jyn Erso, Donnie Yen's Chirrut Imwe, Wen Jiang's Baze Malbus, and Mads Mikkelson's Galen Erso are not likely to show up either due to their character backgrounds, but Star Wars has pulled off wild cameos before.
Will any other classic Star Wars characters appear? Don't count on it, but there have been rumors of a crossover with the Kenobi series. Take that with a grain of salt, but the shows will be set in essentially the same time period, AND both shows are currently filming in the U.K. A Cassian and Kenobi team-up could make a lot of sense and be a lot of fun. As for other Star Wars characters like Han Solo, Chewbacca, Darth Vader, etc., I wouldn't bank on it - at least in the first season. Andor should probably focus exclusively on Cassian in the first season before branching out too much into the rest of the Star Wars universe. Having said that, you can never count it out. Han Solo and Chewie are both at large during this time period, as are plenty of Clone Wars characters. If Cassian were to run into any of them, it could serve as a big draw for Disney+.
The Andor sets and props for the show are pretty massive
Unlike The Mandalorian and Book of Boba Fett, the Andor series is utilizing more practical and physical sets as opposed to the revolutionary screen technology that Jon Favreau helped cultivate. There have been some pretty eye-opening photos of some of the Andor sets, and they are massive. There have also been some pictures of some ships that will be used in the show, and they are definitely worthy of any Star Wars project. Diego Luna has described the show as a "very long movie", so it's no surprise that some of the sets are huge. Still, it's interesting that Andor is not following in the footsteps of The Mandalorian. Perhaps some of the scenes in Andor will require a more practical approach.
Andor has been described as a "spy thriller"
The developers of the show have regularly described the show as "rousing spy thriller" akin to James Bond. Essentially, Star Wars fans can expect Andor to be the Star Wars version of classic spy dramas, especially considering the type of morally gray character Cassian is. We will get to see many of the missions that Cassian went on in his time as a Rebel, and it will probably get very intense. Kathleen Kennedy (president of Lucasfilm) described the show as "ambitious" and "nail-biting", so be sure to expect some incredibly tense-filled moments in the show. There have already been plenty of set photos of Empire officers, so Cassian is sure to run into them a lot.
Who is developing Andor?
By the end of November 2018, Stephen Schiff (known for The Americans) was serving as showrunner and executive producer of the series. In July 2019, Rick Famuyiwa was in early talks to direct several episodes of the series after directing a few episodes for The Mandalorian. In October 2019, Tony Gilroy (who wrote Rogue One) joined the series to write the first episode, direct a few episodes, and work alongside Schiff. Gilroy was credited as a co-writer on Rogue One and also oversaw extensive reshoots for the film. In April 2020, Gilroy had officially replaced Schiff as showrunner. Six weeks of pre-production for the series had taken place in London, but was halted and production on the series delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Pre-production had begun again in September 2020 ahead of a planned filming start the next month. At that time, Gilroy, who is based in New York, chose not to travel to the U.K. for production on the series due to the pandemic, and was therefore unable to direct the series' first episode. Instead, the U.K.-based Toby Haynes (known for Sherlock and Doctor Who), who was already "high on the list" of potential directors for the series, was hired to direct the first three episodes. Gilroy would remain executive producer and showrunner. Ben Caron and Susanna White (neither of which have previous credits) have also been set as additional directors for the show.
Who is writing Andor?
In addition to Tony Gilroy and Stephen Schiff, writers for the series include Beau Willimon (known for The Ides of March and House of Cards) and Dan Gilroy (known for Nightcrawler and Roman J. Israel, Esq.). Speaking to the fact that the series would lead into the events of Rogue One, Diego Luna felt it was "nice to go into a story you already know the ending. Now you can take the nuances and the layers. I think it's fun to do something that isn't just about getting to the end. It's about delaying that." He added that the series was about "the building of a revolution".
What will the design of Andor be like?
Luke Hull (known for Chernobyl and Fortitude) will serve as the lead production designer for the series, and he described it as "very cinematic". Neal Scanlan provides the creature and droid effects for the series after doing the same for all of the Disney-produced Star Wars films, including Rogue One. He said his team was treating the series the same as they did the films, and due to Gilroy's involvement the series would fit within the same "pocket of Star Wars history" as Rogue One with a "slightly harder edge" than other Star Wars projects. Scanlan added that there could possibly be several creatures that got cut in previous Star Wars installments making an appearance in the show. He also said there will be plenty of new creature designs, as all Star Wars projects should have.
Where in the U.K. is Andor filming?
Filming for the series began in London, England, at the beginning of December 2020, with the production based at Pinewood Studios (known for filming Star Wars projects). The show is currently being filmed under the working title Pilgrim, with Jonathan Freeman serving as cinematographer. The series was previously reported to be beginning filming in 2019, and then June 2020, but was of course delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Both British and U.S. COVID-19 protocols were followed on set, including daily temperature checks and tests for COVID-19 three times a week. Filming at Pinewood Studios is expected to end in July 2021. By late January 2021, a large village set had been built for the series on the grounds of a former quarry in Little Marlow, Buckinghamshire (where Kenobi is currently filming), not far from Pinewood Studios. Filming in April also took place at the Coryton Refinery in Corringham, Essex. Several days of filming happened in Cleveleys on the Fylde Coast of Lancashire in early May, with the town's beach being seen covered with alien prosthetics. Further location filming and second unit production began for at least a week at the end of May in Black Park, a country park in Buckinghamshire near Pinewood Studios which was also used as a filming location on Disney-produced Star Wars films. By the end of that month, main production on Pilgrim(aka Andor) had moved to Glen Tilt in Perthshire, Scotland, and was expected to continue there until late June 2021. In other words, Andor has been filming non-stop throughout all of the U.K.
Filming is set to wrap on Andor by the end of the summer 2021
No date has been given, but it's highly likely that Andor will wrap shooting by the end of Summer 2021. Projects like these normally do not take as much time to film as Andor has, so fans can expect it to end filming relatively soon. Because filming has taken so long, it's very likely the show's twelve episodes will all be full length like Loki or The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Neither Disney+ or the Andor showrunner have discussed this, however.
When does Andor release on Disney+?
Andor will premiere in 2022 on Disney+. The first episode of Andor is expected to premiere exclusively on Disney+ sometime in 2022 - probably in the early-Spring timeframe. With The Book of Boba Fett having finished filming recently, and The Mandalorian Season 3 to begin filming later this year, fans can expect Andor to premiere after The Book of Boba Fet t has released its entire season. If we were to make an educated guess, the Disney+ Star Wars shows release schedule will look something like this: Book of Boba Fett in Late 2021 to early 2022, Andor in early 2022 to Spring 2022, Kenobi in Spring 2022 to mid 2022, and Mandalorian Season 3 in mid 2022 to Fall 2022.