In today’s technology-driven age where information can spread across the internet in seconds, Disney and Lucasfilm did a phenomenal job in keeping Luke Skywalker’s cameo in The Mandalorian‘s season 2 finale under wraps. Very few surprises on that sort of scale manage to remain shrouded in secrecy, especially when there are a lot of people who actively seek out spoilers weeks or even months ahead of time.
It was certainly worth it for the fans, as the internet exploded when a mysterious figure decimated an entire battalion of Dark Troopers, threw off his hood and revealed a de-aged Mark Hamill. Admittedly, the visual effects weren’t 100% convincing, but seeing Luke interact with Baby Yoda and Din Djarin was more than enough to compensate for the occasional detour into the uncanny valley.
Things were so secretive, though, that Katee Sackhoff admitted she had no idea Luke was going to appear in The Mandalorian until she watched the episode herself, which is even more incredible when you consider that she was right there on the same set as the stunt double who filled in for Hamill.
“I didn’t know until I saw it with you guys. I didn’t know. They didn’t tell us. There was an actor there with dots on his face. I thought to myself, ‘They would have let us know that’. You know, they said, who did they say it was? I think Robin Gadsby knew who they said it was, but it was a complete red herring. So we didn’t know. I knew it was a Jedi. I knew it was an X-Wing. So you start to put things together, but you don’t know.”
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Audiences starting putting the pieces together from the second an X-Wing first showed up, so several of the cast members would have no doubt clicked while they were shooting the scenes in question, even if Jon Favreau hadn’t given them much to work with in terms of specifics. Pedro Pascal was probably informed given that he’s the star of the show and directly interacted with Hamill’s stunt double on screen, but it sounds as though everyone else was kept in the dark for as long as possible, which is an impressive dedication on The Mandalorian team’s part to making sure the big reveal didn’t leak ahead of time.