Star Wars fans have known for a while now that actor Stellan Skarsgard would be playing a major role in Andor. As marketing ramped up for Andor in recent months, fans learned that Skarsgard was playing a new character named Luthen Rael who would play a role in Cassian Andor joining the Rebel Alliance.
The new Andor trailer released during Good Morning America now offers more insights and more questions about Skarsgard’s character.
One of the biggest surprises and insights in the new trailer is that Luthen Rael appears to be a wealthy individual on Coruscant. He can be seen well-dressed and with a polished appearance and surrounded by expensive-looking items as he cheerfully welcomes Mon Mothma.
This is a stark contrast from all other footage and photos released of the character so far. Everything else–including other moments in the new trailer–depict Luthen Rael as a gruff individual wearing unremarkable clothing as he navigates gritty and harsh environments. This trailer shows him in these environments as he not only recruits Cassian, but also Saw Gerrera and his Partisans.
While Luthen Rael may not be a senator, he is clearly someone with wealth and status on Coruscant. The expensive-looking items might indicate that he is an art collector of some sort, though it is too early to tell.
Much like Mon Mothma, he appears to be playing a double life. She has one life as an Imperial senator and one where she secretly creates the Rebel Alliance. For Luthen Rael, he appears to have one life recruiting valuable individuals to the Rebel Alliance in downtrodden parts of the galaxy and one that is a life of luxury on Coruscant.
A hint of that double life is given when another characters says to Luthen Rael, “You’re slipping,” to which he replies, “I’m not slipping. I’ve just been hiding for too long.”
This could mean that Luthen Rael has felt like he’s been hiding behind his comfortable life on Coruscant and that while that façade may be slipping away, it is okay as he is embracing his true self. He is not just recruiting rebels; he is actively fighting as he can be seen firing at Imperial ships in the trailer.
With Cassian and Mon Mothma having parallel storylines and being separate for most of the season, it seems that Luthen Rael will be the connective tissue between their stories. He will likely be a key player in both of their storylines and it is through him that Cassian and Mon Mothma will eventually meet and work together.
It will be interesting to see whether Luthen Rael and Mon Mothma are immediately on the same page as they use their positions on Coruscant to secretly build a Rebel Alliance. They could also both be working toward a Rebel Alliance without realizing it at first. They might even be wary of other each other and only learn of their true motives and team up later in the season.
There is also the possibility that even though they are both working towards a Rebel Alliance, they never actively work together or trust each other. After all, Luthen Rael is the one who appears to be recruiting Saw Gerrera, and Rogue One and Star Wars Rebels already revealed the tension between Mon Mothma and Saw Gerrera, and their different beliefs about how best to fight the Empire.
Regardless of the exact nature of his relationship with Mon Mothma, it is exciting to gradually learn more about Luthen Rael and to see a talented actor like Stellan Skarsgard become a key part of live-action Star Wars.
Andor‘s 3-episode premiere will release on September 21st exclusively on Disney+.