It's been a while since we've heard from one of our Rogue One friends.
Alan Tudyk's K-2SO stole the show in the first Star Wars spinoff film, though the droid ultimately met his fate in the third act of the film like the rest of movie's leads. It was announced in late 2018 that a live-action series starring Cassian Andor was in development for Disney+, a show that we've since learned will be titled Star Wars: Andor. Tudyk joined Cassian actor Diego Luna on-stage at 2019's D-23 event to promote the series, but little else has been heard regarding his involvement since.
Andor began filming in London back in November, and with two months passed things are moving forward with a full head of steam. The sizzle that debuted during Disney's Investors Day meeting in December confirmed that 12 episodes are coming in 2022, but Tudyk's presence in the footage was conspicuously absent. As it turns out, there's a good reason why...
In an interview with Collider, actor Alan Tudyk said that K-2SO won't be involved in the Andor right out of the gate:
“They're shooting it right now, I'm not in it. But, if it stays on the air, stories keep getting told, I'll end up in there."
While K2 won't be in Andor's first season, Tudyk stood firm in saying that there is a plan for a character, and he will appear eventually:
"I'm going to be in the show. It's just that the story that Tony [Gilroy] is telling doesn't involve K-2SO until later on... I can't be too specific, but I can definitely say that I'm not going to be in the first season.”
WHAT THIS MEANS
There are actually two interesting things to unpack here.
The obvious is that, despite his involvement in announcements, Tudyk won't actually be in the first season of the series. It was previously revealed via the official Star Wars website that Tudyk would be returning to play K2, but that article has since been removed as plans have clearly changed. There had been reports of challenges throughout the creative process in recent years as Andor's team worked to get the project running, so K2's involvement was likely one of the struggles.
What's also intriguing is that, for the first time, it's been confirmed that Andor will be more than just a limited run and span multiple seasons. Andor will undoubtedly be a hit, so low viewership shouldn't be a concern that could derail the project and bring it to an abrupt conclusion. With this new bit of information in mind, it's not unreasonable to suggest that the series could run all the way up until the primary events of Rogue One, spanning a five-year period of time.
How K-2SO was going to be incorporated in Andor was always a point of intrigue. Following the release of Rogue One, Lucasfilm and Marvel Comics released a one-shot special titled Cassian & K-2SO, depicting the duo's initial meeting shortly before the events of the film. When Andor and Tudyk's involvement were announced, the assumption was that the comic would be stricken from the canon in favor of whatever story the series' creators elected to tell.
Showrunner Tony Gilroy clearly has a plan, but we'll have to play the long game to see how things work themselves out. The prospect of several 12-episode seasons for Andor is thrilling, and when K-2SO is finally added to the mix the series will truly begin to feel like a prequel to Rogue One. Just how long the show will run and when K2 will join the fray remains to be seen, but when Andor's first season launches next year, the picture should become a bit clearer.