The last half-decade or so has finally seen Genevieve O’Reilly get her long-awaited Star Wars dues; the Matrix Reloaded star has been bringing Mon Mothma to life since 2005 with her cameo role in Revenge of the Sith, but it wasn’t until 2016’s Rogue One that the actress was given a proper speaking role; a role that’s set to be infinitely expanded upon over the events of Andor.
Mon Mothma is a Republic senator who goes on to co-found the Rebel Alliance during the events of Rogue One. Following the defeat of the Empire in the Star Wars mythos, she serves as Chancellor of the New Republic. In short, she’s a powerful ally for many a Star Wars protagonist.
It’s been a long time coming for O’Reilly, who lost out on her opportunity to make a splash in the Star Wars scene a decade before Rogue One, when all of her speaking scenes in Revenge of the Sith wound up being cut from the film by director George Lucas and producer Rick McCallum.
But it wasn’t a sore point for the actress, who would have been 28 at the time of Revenge of the Sith‘s release; in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, O’Reilly remarked how Lucas and McCallum went about their decisions with the utmost respect towards her.
“Well, in fairness, George Lucas and Rick McCallum, who was the producer, they’re such pros, they wrote to me and told me, so I knew way before. And they were so beautiful about that and kind to me as a very young actor.”
She would go on to note that her understanding of the film’s collective creative integrity necessitated that her scenes be cut.
“Of course it was all about Darth Vader becoming Darth Vader. Cinema has to have a singular focus for it to drive, you know? Cinema doesn’t have a lot of time to tell the story. So I respected their decision, and when I watched it, it made total sense.”
And now, with Andor in full swing, we’re set to see a side of Mon Mothma that’s packed to the brim with tension and intrigue, given that she’s an enemy of the Empire in a time where such a distinction would put you firmly in their crosshairs, and her case is made even more dangerous by being such a public political figurehead. We’ll be sure to catch Mon’s development when the next episode of Andor drops onto Disney Plus on Oct. 5.