Gina Carano previously portrayed the character of Cara Dune in the first two seasons of Disney+'s The Mandalorian. The actress was set to reprise her role as the lead in a spin-off titled Rangers of the New Republic before making some controversial comments on social media that led to her firing.
However, Dune was recently mentioned in the Season 3 premiere of The Mandalorian, and now it seems as though Disney and Lucasfilm could want to move forward with the character but with a different actress.
Cara Dune Being Recast Was Already Rumored
Since Carano was fired, multiple rumors suggested that someone else could take up the mantle of Cara Dune in the future of the interconnected MandoVerse on Disney+.
Dune didn't appear in The Book of Boba Fett, which premiered on Disney+ in December 2021, and wasn't even mentioned by any of the characters in the show. However, according to The Hollywood Reporter, there were never any plans for Carano to appear in the show, meaning that her firing had nothing to do with the character's absence.
The report also stated, though, that insiders believed Dune would be recast at some point in the future due to "story and merchandising reasons." However, someone from Lucasfilm believed that the character would not be recast following Carano's firing.
Giant Freakin Robot also reported on the possibility of Dune being recast, saying that Lucasfilm was looking to move forward with the character and was specifically searching for an actress with similar physical features as Carano.
That report also mentioned Rangers of the New Republic and how both Disney and Lucasfilm planned on that series contributing heavily to the MandoVerse.
Some fans previously threw Xena: Warrior Princess star Lucy Lawless into the fancast ring to replace Carano. Though Lawless denied talks about The Mandalorian, she did reveal that she had discussed a potential role with Lucasfilm. Perhaps these talks could come back around and lead to Lawless taking on the role.
Cara Dune Mentioned in The Mandalorian
The first episode from Season 3 of The Mandalorian gave fans some insight into the reason that Carano's character wouldn't be around for the time being.
While this revelation does explain why Dune is absent, it also confirms that the character is still around in the universe. This means that if Disney and Lucasfilm wanted, she could be easily brought back and it wouldn't interfere with canon.
Ultimately, the mention in Season 3's premiere episode may have more weight than previously thought, and it could be hinting that Cara Dune may come back with a new actress playing her.
Rangers of the New Republic Release Still Possible
Rangers of the New Republic is currently not in production, but that doesn't mean that it was scrapped altogether.
However, Hera is confirmed to be in the upcoming Ahsoka series. If Rangers of the New Republic does come out, it is possible that plans could have Cara Dune back, especially with the mention of her in Season 3 of The Mandalorian.
Perhaps Dune could serve the New Republic as a member of special forces, and when a new actress is found to play the character, Dune could transition back into the fold in a show dedicated solely to her.
What Cara Dune Brings to the Table
In the first two seasons of The Mandalorian, Cara Dune played a fairly crucial role in the overall story.
She became a trusted ally and friend of the Mandalorian and Greef Karga and ultimately helped take down and capture Moff Gideon, who posed a great threat to the galaxy.
With the current trajectory of Season 3, she is not really needed. Most of the episodes will likely take place on Mandalore or at least revolve around the Mandalorians as opposed to the previous seasons that focused on the remnants of the Empire.
However, once Din resolves his current conflicts, there is a good chance that Moff Gideon will be back in full force.
Having a character like Cara Dune at his side could prove more than useful, and with how her current whereabouts were described in the Season 3 premiere episode, she could be easily brought back.
New episodes of Season 3 of The Mandalorian stream Wednesdays on Disney+.