A popular theory regarding the fan-favorite clone trooper, Captain Rex, and a background character from Return of the Jedi might not hold as much water as it used to.
In the Star Wars Original Trilogy capper Return of the Jedi, the heroes venture to the forest moon of Endor to disable the Empire's shield generator and help to obliterate the second Death Star.
The Rebel Alliance dispatches a team to Endor, consisting of Luke, Leia, and the other main characters, as well as a squad of ground troops. And among those soldiers is an older man with a distinctive white beard.
Then, several decades later, Captain Rex cropped up on the animated series Star Wars Rebels, sporting facial hair that made him look quite similar to that specific Endor trooper. This, of course, led fans to speculate and theorize that these two men were one and the same. But are they? Perhaps not, according to newly-revealed merchandise.
Hasbro Black Series Figure Possibly Disproves Fan Theory
A new 6-inch scale Star Wars figure from Hasbro's much-loved Black Series line was recently unveiled. The character in question: An Endor trooper. This figure includes swappable face plates so it can represent more than one squad member, in case collectors want to build out an army.
One of the faces is indeed meant to be representative of that white-bearded man seen on the planet in Return of the Jedi. What's more notable is that he does not bear the likeness of Temuera Morrison who plays all of the clones in live-action.
All this means that the theory that die-hard fans have held so dear probably isn’t true. But even then, Star Wars mastermind Dave Filoni has previously stoked the fires of this character from Jedi actually being Rex, mentioning that he “really [does] think” they’re one and the same (Via Slashfilm):
”The one thing that I have toyed with and we’ll see how I feel about this, this is probably a spoiler, Carrie Beck, but I gotta give them something. I’ve said absolutely nothing today. And my wife’s like yeah, it’s just like being home. But I think the one thing I have really thought about is I really do think that Rex is that guy on Endor. I really do. Why else is there a bearded old guy on Endor, Tano? Why? It makes no sense. If you don’t want that to happen, do you know what that means? I’m gonna make that happen. I’m getting like Palpatine, I’m getting power crazy.“
However, later, Filoni gave a far more ambiguous response, (via IGN) noting that if fans think that Nik Sant is Rex, then they’re perfectly welcome to do so, even if it doesn’t exactly align with canon.
Captain Rex or Nik Sant?
It’s extremely important to note that if one looks up the bearded Endor trooper on Wookieepedia, the go-to knowledge base for Star Wars, he’s listed as Nik Sant, firmly setting the record straight that he isn’t Rex.
Still, as Dave Filoni himself said, if audiences still wish to imagine that he’s Rex, called into action for the decisive battle of the Galactic Civil War, then that is absolutely their prerogative.
Because at the end of the day, Star Wars is meant to be fun. Fan theories are what give momentum to this vast franchise and without them, things would be a lot more boring.
At any rate, the aforementioned Endor Trooper Black Series action figure has not been put up for pre-order yet but will cost around 25 dollars and be sold at most major retailers.