During the height of its second season, The Mandalorian brought in one of Star Wars' most beloved characters in Ahsoka Tano. Near the end of her only episode to date, she gave fans the first live-action mention of the villainous Grand Admiral Thrawn.
Thrawn was last seen at the end of the animated television series Star Wars: Rebels as he was carried deep into the unknown regions of the galaxy along with the show's main protagonist, the young Jedi Ezra Bridger.
Fast forward to the present day, and Ahsoka has her own series lined up to come out on Disney+ sometime in the near future. With "Chapter 13: The Jedi" almost acting as a backdoor pilot for that series, rumors and fan castings for Ezra and Thrawn have been plastered all over the Star Wars community.
One such actor that's gained a hefty amount of fan support for the casting of Ezra is Aladdin's Mena Massoud. Rumors began to swirl even more violently about Massoud being the man for the role when he captioned an Instagram post with "hey, just so you know, when I escape I won't hurt any of you," which is a direct quote from Ezra in Season 2 of Rebels.
Since the Instagram post, not much more has come to light on Massoud or the casting for this role. However, the Aladdin star recently broke his silence and explained just how important that social media caption was for him.
Mena Massoud on Playing Ezra Bridger
In a recent interview with Screen Rant, Mena Massoud sat down to explain his cryptic Instagram post regarding Star Wars' Ezra Bridger for the first time.
He was asked about the post and what it meant, revealing that he was "just manifesting" himself for the role and "wanted to throw [his] name in the ring:"
"Yeah. Just manifesting, just manifesting, trying different things. Yeah, there's not much more I can say about that, but, you know, I had heard murmurings that this role was coming up and this is becoming a real thing. So I just kinda wanted to throw my name in the ring and -- yeah, just part of manifesting what you want."
The young Aladdin star went on to discuss how the social media age is so different from the past, making it easier for actors to market themselves for roles. With this specific role in mind, he added that playing Ezra "would be a dream come true:"
"I think we live in an age now that's so different than ‘70s, ‘80s, ‘90s, Hollywood, where there was no social media. It was really just your representatives, putting things out there for you. But now, we have the ability to put things out there for ourselves because of social media and because we can put things out there. So yeah, I just wanted to put it out there, I guess... It would be a dream come true."
Massoud then took some time to recall the experience he gained from starring in the lead role in Aladdin, explaining how it would prepare him for a role in a franchise as big as Star Wars:
"Obviously, I've already had one of my dreams come true with Aladdin, but I also think I could just really do it justice. I've worked on that kind of big, massive set before on Aladdin. I think I have that under my belt now and thankfully the film did really well, so I think I've proven that I can be successful in that environment."
He ended by briefly exploring the direction that Star Wars is currently trending towards, praising the "solid job" that Disney and Lucasfilm are doing with the franchise's future and adding that he "like(s) what they're doing with that world:"
"I think it would just be a great opportunity to take everything that I learned on a set like Aladdin and implement it into the Star Wars or DC or Marvel universe. We're talking about manifesting, so yeah, it would mean a lot, it would mean a lot. I think I would also do a solid job and work really hard. I like what they're doing with that world and how they're expanding the universe."
The Ezra Bridger Star Wars Needs
If Mena Massoud didn't truly want to play the role of Ezra, he wouldn't talk about it as much as he has. Of course, he is at the mercy of both Disney and Lucasfilm, who are ultimately in control of casting for their upcoming projects, but one would have to assume that they would love for someone like him to fill the role.
Breaking down Massoud's character and his acting experience, there truly isn't anyone else that comes to mind as more qualified. As he mentioned, Aladdin was a blockbuster-sized project for Disney in which he shined as the lead actor. Take into consideration his nationality and his physical build as well, and it may make for the perfect live-action Ezra Bridger.
Hopefully, both Disney and Lucasfilm can see the potential that Massoud could bring to the small screen as Ezra, and with any luck, the announcement that he has been cast in the upcoming Ahsoka series will soon be official.