Star Wars took a huge risk by taking the franchise into the era of live-action streaming series.
In the end, has since paid off for Disney as The Mandalorian proved to be a huge hit among fans . While casual fans recognized it for its amazing action and storytelling, hardcore fans began to enjoy elements of Star Wars lore being brought into canon from across books, TV, and comics.
One of the biggest twists of the series brought The Clone Wars ' Ahsoka Tano into live-action for the first time, played by Rosario Dawson. Surprisingly, the episode made reference to her last animated appearance in Rebels by mentioning her hunt for Grand Admiral Thrawn , who was last seen with Ezra Bridger in the show's finale .
With Ahsoka having made her first foray into live-action, fans have begun to speculate that Thrawn and Ezra could be next . Ahsoka is set to return in her own Disney+ series that will continue her story in The Mandalorian 's era, leading many to believe other Rebels heroes like Ezra could appear here too.
When Ahsoka Tano was slated to first appear in the live-action format, Dawson was a clear front runner for the part, with many fans eyeing her as an obvious choice. Since then, speculation has run rampant as to who would make a good fit for Ezra , and Mena Massoud, the star of Disney's recent adaptation of Aladdin , has proven to be a popular choice.
ALADDIN STAR TEASES STAR WARS DISNEY+ CASTING
Last month, a report circulated from Kessel Run Transmissions claiming that Aladdin 's Mena Massoud was being eyed as Disney's frontrunner to take the role of Star Wars Rebels' Ezra Bridger in the Rosario Dawson-led Ahsoka series on Disney+.
Under a month later, Massoud has shared an image on Instagram of his recent muscular transformation. But more interesting, the image is accompanied by an Ezra Bridger quote from Star Wars: Rebels , seemingly teasing that Massoud may have been cast to take the role in live-action.
"Hey, just so you know, when I escape I won't hurt any of you."
The quote included in the caption comes from the eighth episode of the second season, Stealth Strike in which Ezra says the same quote, “Hey, just so you know, when I escape I won't hurt any of you,” while under the captivity of the Empire.
HAS MENA MASSOUD BEEN CAST AS EZRA BRIDGER?
As the Disney+ Star Wars universe continues to expand and include new characters from other forms of media, fan speculation continues to run rampant as to the best actors to bring these icons to live-action.
Mena Massoud has previously shared his interest in joining the iconic sci-fi franchise , and given the actor's existing affiliation with Disney given the popularity of the 2019 Aladdin adaptation, he seems like a likely choice for the role of Ezra.
It's hard to say if the actor's use of a popular quote is a cryptic confirmation of his casting in the role or simply a reiteration of his interest in the Star Wars Jedi. Whatever the case, it does provide another step towards an official casting announcement.
Recent rumors have suggested Thrawn and Ezra may be set to lead their own Disney+ series , but the leads planted in Ahsoka's live-action debut in The Mandalorian seemed to suggest her solo series would be the perfect opportunity for the two to debut.
As Rebels fans continue to wait for an official announcement, The Mandalorian era of Star Wars will next be explored this December on Disney+ in The Book of Boba Fett .