Lars Mikkelsen as Grand Admiral Thrawn in Ahsoka

Who Plays Thrawn in ‘Ahsoka’? Answered

The only thing more exciting than Grand Admiral Thrawn being back for Ahsoka is who’s playing him. Grand Admiral Thrawn had an interesting introduction to the Star Wars universe. Unlike most characters, Thrawn didn’t make his debut in a canon film or TV series. Instead, Thrawn was created by author Timothy Zahn for his Thrawn trilogy. The trilogy followed Thrawn, a former Grand Admiral in the Imperial Navy, who seeks to overthrow the New Republic and restore the Galactic Empire. These plans to restore the Empire earn him the nickname “Heir to the Empire.”

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With the remnants of the Imperial Fleet backing him, he launches countless attacks and plots against the New Republic. His greatest skill is that he is a brilliant military strategist. Few characters in the Star Wars universe can match his tactical skill and military knowledge, and he uses it to make the tattered Imperial Fleet into a force that poses a major threat to the New Republic. It didn’t take long for Thrawn to become a very popular antagonist in the Star Wars universe.

However, in 2014, the Thrawn trilogy fell under the Star Wars books, comic books, and videos that were named part of Legends and not part of the official Star Wars canon. Fortunately, this problem was solved when Thrawn made his TV debut in Star Wars Rebels, voiced by Lars Mikkelsen. The show’s introduction of Thrawn made him canon in the Star Wars film/TV universe and created the possibility of him showing up in further projects. Now, Ahsoka is bringing him back, raising the question of who will portray him for his live-action debut.

Who voices Thrawn in Ahsoka?

Lars Mikkelsen as Grand Admiral Thrawn in Ahsoka
(Disney+)

When you watch Thrawn in Ahsoka, there will likely be something familiar about his voice. That’s because Mikkelsen, who voiced the animated version of Thrawn, is set to portray the role in live-action in Ahsoka. He did a brilliant job voicing Thrawn in Star Wars Rebels, giving him a smooth but chilling tone that captured Thrawn’s intelligence and ruthlessness. As a result, he was the number one fan cast for the role of Thrawn in Ahsoka. In April, fans’ wishes were heeded when Mikkelsen’s casting was officially confirmed.

Mikkelsen’s transition to live-action makes him one of the rare Star Wars animated voice actors who also portrayed their character’s live-action counterpart. Over the years, a few actors have pulled off the feat, such as Forest Whitaker’s Saw Gerrera, Corey Burton’s Cad Bane, and Jason Blum’s Garazeb Orrelios. Most of the time, the actors will reprise their roles for brief live-action guest appearances. So far, the only voice actress who nabbed a lead role in live-action is Katee Sackhoff’s Bo-Katan Kryze. Sackhoff voiced Kryze in Star Wars: The Clone Wars, then appeared in live-action in The Mandalorian. She was elevated to a main role for The Mandalorian season 3. Mikkelsen will be the first animated villain, though, to land a lead role in live-action.

Meanwhile, it seems that Ahsoka is going to be pulling inspiration from the original Thrawn trilogy, as Thrawn was referred to as the Heir to the Empire in the trailer. It will be exciting to see Mikkelsen’s take on Thrawn in live-action and how Ahsoka will further develop the iconic villain.

(featured image: Disney+)


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Rachel Ulatowski
Rachel Ulatowski is a Staff Writer for The Mary Sue, who frequently covers DC, Marvel, Star Wars, literature, and celebrity news. She has over three years of experience in the digital media and entertainment industry, and her works can also be found on Screen Rant, JustWatch, and Tell-Tale TV. She enjoys running, reading, snarking on YouTube personalities, and working on her future novel when she's not writing professionally. You can find more of her writing on Twitter at @RachelUlatowski.