A highlight of The Mandalorian’s first season was the variety of exceptional directors. Which of those directors will be returning for Season 2 and which new filmmakers will join them?
After the wildly successful first season last year, The Mandalorian’s second season will air on Disney Plus this fall. Five different directors took the reins for the first eight chapters of the series. Most of them are expected to return to direct at least one episode of the upcoming season, while additional talent will be brought in to fill out Season 2.
Returning Mandalorian Directors
At this point, Filoni is one of the most consistent names associated with Star Wars content. He worked on all the hit animated series, mainly Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels, and Star Wars Resistance. The Mandalorian creator, Jon Favreau, tapped Filoni’s knowledge and talent for the live-action show.
Filoni directed the excellent pilot episode as well as the Tatooine-set western style story “The Gunslinger”. With fan favorite Jedi, Ahsoka Tano, set to appear in Season 2, one has to wonder if Filoni will direct the episode that introduces her to the live-action Star Wars universe. He had a big hand in developing her character in the animated series. Rosario Dawson will be portraying Anakin’s former Padawan.
This Dope director not only helmed “The Child”, where audiences fell in love with baby Yoda (if they hadn’t already in the final seconds of the pilot), but also “The Prisoner” – the prison break chapter that is arguably the best episode of The Mandalorian so far. Bringing Famuyiwa back for more Mandalorian was a no-brainer.
Bryce Dallas Howard
The actress is not well-known as a director and perhaps she got her foot in the Star Wars door after her father, Ron Howard, directed Solo: A Star Wars Story. Bryce Dallas Howard helmed the Season 1 episode “Sanctuary”, which is clearly influenced by Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai. In that storyline, she introduced one of the coolest new female Star Wars characters, Gina Carano’s Cara Dune. If not Dave Filoni, perhaps Howard will direct the episode that brings Ahsoka, an established kick-ass Star Wars heroine, to live-action.
First-time Mandalorian Directors
That is right, despite being the man behind the entire series, as creator, writer, and producer, Favreau did not actually direct during the first season. Now that the show’s production pieces have been set in place, Favreau is finding the time to wear yet another hat. Typically, when showrunners also direct, they tend to lead the way with the opening, or they finish things off in the finale. So look out for Favreau to helm either the first or last episode of the season.
Another man who is not new to the show, but will sit in the director’s seat this go round, Carl Weathers plays Greef Karga in The Mandalorian. He has had quite an engrossing arc thus far and it will be fun to see where Weathers takes the character going forward. Although he is famous for his cinematic performances, Weathers has directed for television before, including shows where he wasn’t among the cast. Will he appear as Greef in the Mandalorian episode that he directs?
Rodriguez is a friend of Favreau’s (they made cauliflower pizza together on The Chef Show) and hiring Rodriguez to direct The Mandalorian makes sense given his aptitude in both the science fiction and western genres. The risky director does not always make hits, yet it wouldn’t be surprising if he knocks this show out of the park.
Both Peyton Reed and Jon Favreau are Marvel Cinematic Universe director alumni, for two Ant-Mans and two Iron Mans respectively. Reed has always favored comedy in his work, but has also showcased that he can infuse his style of humor into big budget superhero movies. If The Mandalorian was ever going to commit to a wholly comedic route for one of its plots, Peyton Reed may be the perfect director for that endeavor.
Another MCU connection with The Mandalorian is Sam Hargrave. Jon Favreau brought in the accomplished Avengers stunt coordinator as a second-unit director for the upcoming Star Wars season. Hargrave’s recent debut feature film, Extraction, featured the best action sequences of the year so far.
Missing Mandalorian Directors
Deborah Chow and Taika Waititi are the only Season 1 directors who are not confirmed to be working on the second season as of right now.
After directing two episodes of The Mandalorian, Chow will pivot to direct the planned Obi-Wan Kenobi series. Waititi helmed a sole chapter in the first season and that just happened to be the climactic finale. His high-profile status obviously had a lot to do with him being trusted to close out the rookie year. Coming off of an Academy Award victory, Waititi has stated that other projects prevented him from returning for more Mandalorian.
The Mandalorian Season 2 will air on Disney Plus this coming October. An exact premiere date will be announced in the coming months.