Every fan of “The Mandalorian” has been waiting for showrunner Jon Favreau to weigh in on the Season 2 finale, which featured the surprise return of Luke Skywalker. The credits for the finale listed Max Lloyd Jones as the “Double for Jedi,” but it was unmistakable that original franchise star Mark Hamill had returned to at least voice the de-aged Luke. In his first public interview about the finale, Favreau confirmed to “Good Morning America” that Hamill was involved in Luke’s return in far more than just a voiceover capacity. Similar to Robert De Niro in “The Irishman,” Hamill filmed Luke’s “Mandalorian” cameo on set and VFX technology was used to de-age the character.
“We started off the whole series with the Baby Yoda reveal – with the Grogu reveal – that was a secret that everybody was really blown away by,” Favreau said. “Part of that is not telling too many people, not having merchandise that’s being tooled up and announced and everything. And then the very last episode having Mark Hamill actually on set filming and us using whatever technology we had available to de-age him and try to make him look as much like he did in the old films.”
That word of Luke Skywalker’s appearance in “The Mandalorian” Season 2 finale and of Mark Hamill’s return never leaked remains a source of shock for Favreau. “It was very tricky because it’s very hard to keep a secret nowadays, especially with ‘Star Wars’ because people are so curious about it,” the director said. “And there are so many people involved with the process with visual effects finishing, making it, filming it, the studios everything. Every piece of casting leaked, and we were so scared right up until it aired that our surprise cameo was gonna leak too.”
Hamill himself celebrated on Twitter Luke’s appearance never leaking ahead of the finale’s airing, writing, “The fact that we were able to keep my involvement a secret for over a year with no leaks is nothing less than a miracle. A real triumph for spoiler-haters everywhere!”
Hamill’s tweet only said “involvement,” which left things ambiguous at the time regarding how “The Mandalorian” pulled off the Luke Skywalker scene. Many believed Max Lloyd Jones acted the entire sequence as Luke and Hamill provided the voice, but Favreau said otherwise, as Hamill was on set filming scenes as Luke. It would appear Jones handled Luke’s action beats while Hamill acted in the scene where Luke came face to face with Baby Yoda and took him away for Jedi training.
Both seasons of “The Mandalorian” are now streaming on Disney+. According to Favreau, the show’s third season is now in pre-production and will begin filming “The Book of Boba Fett” wraps production. The Boba Fett show is set for release in December 2021, meaning there will not be a new “Mandalorian” season until 2022.
The fact that we were able to keep my involvement a secret for over a year with no leaks is nothing less than a miracle. A real triumph for spoiler-haters everywhere!#LooseLipsSinkStarships #STFU pic.twitter.com/TOBqlXYyHN
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) December 19, 2020