Forest Whitaker To Play ‘Clone Wars’ Character in ‘Star Wars: Rogue One’

Whitaker will play Saw Gerrera, a grizzled guerilla fighter from the “Star Wars” animated series who’s not afraid to fight the Empire with shady tactics

forest whitaker rogue one
?Lucasfilm LFL

Lucasfilm has been revealing more about the background of the characters in “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” through an Entertainment Weekly sneak-peek, and we now know that one of the characters will connect the “Star Wars” universe across mediums. That character is Saw Gerrera, a grizzled fighter played by Forest Whitaker who first made his debut in the “Clone Wars” animated series.

Saw Gerrera is a guerrilla soldier from the planet Onderon who became the self-appointed leader of a rebel unit fighting against Count Dooku’s forces in “Clone Wars.” In the series, Anakin and Obi-Wan travel to Onderon to help train Saw’s forces in the hopes of preventing another planet from leaving the Republic. Saw and his team are victorious in their quest for preserving freedom, but at a personal cost to Saw that won’t be spoiled here.

But as “Star Wars” fans know, while Saw won that battle, his side ended up losing the war as Anakin became Darth Vader and led the Empire to rule over the galaxy. “Rogue One” takes place several decades after the events of “Clone Wars,” as Whitaker plays a much older Saw who continues to fight tyranny despite the toll time and war have taken on his body.

Lucasfilm told Entertainment Weekly that Saw is an erstwhile ally of the Rebel Alliance, butting heads with the other characters because of his willingness to do far more questionable things than the rebel forces are willing to do to fight the Empire.

“Consider him kind of a battered veteran who leads a band of Rebel extremists,” Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy said. “He’s on the fringe of the Rebel Alliance. Even [they] are a little concerned about him.”

“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” will arrive in theaters December 16.

Forest Whitaker is just one part of a large ensemble cast in “Rogue One.” For details on the rest of big characters, check out the gallery below.