A familiar droid is making its return to the Star Wars universe. Jon Favreau, the man in charge of The Mandalorian, the first ever live-action TV series set within a galaxy far, far away, has teased various things from time to time on social media throughout the production, without giving away too much. A great deal of it has been pretty deep stuff that hardcore fans can appreciate and this is no different. Per Favreau's latest post, R5-D4 is set to make an unlikely comeback.
The name may not stick out to more casual fans, but R5-D4 is a droid anyone will surely recognize. The red and white astromech droid was the one originally purchased by Luke's uncle Owen. Unfortunately, his motivator went bad right after the purchase and the droid went up in a huge puff of smoke. The Jawas took the droid back and instead sold Owen Lars R2-D2. Without R5-D4's malfunction, the Rebellion may not have had the information they needed to blow up the Death Star.
Jon Favreau shared a photo from the set of The Mandalorian, with absolutely no caption provided, that clearly shows R5-D4 looking much better off than last time we saw the character on screen. So, it appears that the astromech will be making an appearance in the series. Will it be just a brief cameo? Or is this little droid going to be a slightly more significant player in the story? That would serve as a fun little redemption arc for a very minor character that came so unknowingly close to greatness. Favreau seems to have a fondness for droids who were given very little screen time previously, as he also confirmed previously that the bounty hunter droid IG-88, briefly featured in The Empire Strikes Back, will also appear.
While much of what we're going to see remains a mystery, The Mandalorian will center on a lone gunslinger making his way in the Outer Rim, an area largely unexplored on screen up to this point. The cast includes Pedro Pascal (Kingsman: The Golden Circle) in the lead role, alongside Gina Carano (Deadpool), Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad), Emily Swallow (Supernatural), Carl Weathers (Predator), Omid Abtahi (American Gods) Nick Nolte (Warrior) and legendary German filmmaker/actor Werner Herzog.
Dave Filoni, the man behind The Clone Wars and Rebels animated shows, is directing the first episode, with Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok), Rick Famuyiwa (Dope), Deborah Chow (Jessica Jones) and Bryce Dallas Howard (Solemates) also on board to direct episodes. It's rumored that several of the directors will be playing small roles in the show as well, with Waititi said to be voicing a droid. It's also expected that Jon Favreau will have a minor on-screen role. The Mandalorian is set to premiere later this year on the upcoming Disney+ streaming service. Be sure to check out the image of R5-D4 from Jon Favreau's Instagram below.