Do you all remember when Luke Skywalker made his cameo appearance in the final episode of The Mandalorian, season 2? You’d think that creator Jon Favreau planned it all out from the start, right? Well, about that…
In a recent interview with the Writers Guild of America, Jon Favreau of The Mandalorian fame was asked: “Did you have this arc planned out from the very beginning? Specifically, was the appearance of Luke Skywalker, revealing that the story was essentially a few years after Return of the Jedi, always a set idea from the jump, or something that you arrived on after working with the material?”. His answer was simply:
No. The story unfolded as I wrote it. The Mandalorian inherits a great deal from existing Star Wars stories, and when I write, that context is always a consideration. It became clear that, within the established continuity, certain things were likely to transpire.
Jon Favreau: The Master of the Indy Ploy
I think the fact that Jon Favreau didn’t originally intend to include Luke Skywalker into The Mandalorian is pretty meaningful. It meant that Favreau had a lot of freedom to work on the show however he saw fit. It also indicates a near-complete lack of executive meddling. Or at least, a low enough amount of executive meddling that it didn’t make a difference.
To me, this is evidence that creators like Jon Favreau should get a lot of freedom in what they make. Without that freedom, you get subpar films. A stifled creator doesn’t exactly create things we’d like. Or worse, multiple stifled creators would create something like The Rise of Skywalker. Now wouldn’t that have been a tragedy if The Mandalorian had ended up like that?
Jon Favreau pulled off an Indy Ploy when he was writing Luke Skywalker into The Mandalorian. It’s likely why his cameo appearance in the last episode of season 2 was such a shocker. If Favreau himself didn’t set out to include our hero from Return of the Jedi into the show, what hope did everyone else have? Don’t believe me? Watch The Mandalorian for yourself on Disney+ to see how great it is.