The most recent episode of The Mandalorian season 2 features iconic character Bo-Katan Kryze's live-action debut, but the actor who's portrayed her for years initially struggled to make the transition.
In an interview with StarWars.com (opens in new tab), Katee Sackoff opens up about playing Bo-Katan for over a decade, and how her familiarity with the stoic Mandalorian warrior did more harm than good at first. "I think the main thing is I truly thought that having voiced her for over a decade would help me. And it actually sort of hurt a little bit in the beginning,” Sackoff says. “While it gave me a tremendous understanding of who she was as a person, it didn’t help me to figure out her physicality. It didn’t help me to figure out the way her face moved or the way she walked. I had seen the way she moved, but it was in animation. And so to translate that in a way that didn’t look cartoonish was actually harder than I thought it would be."
Sackoff goes on to point out that her own personality and facial expressions made it even harder to embody Bo-Katan, who is serious and reserved. In voice acting sessions for Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels, Sackoff was "a crazy person...I'm moving and I'm jumping around and my face is doing all these weird things." Bo-Katan, a former member of Death Watch who has made some questionable choices in her past, couldn't be further from that.
"There is a stoicism to Bo-Katan that is very purposeful and intentional. When she moves, she means to do it. It’s thought out," Sackoff explains. "So I really had to find a way of living her and having her move [in a way] that felt calculated, which did not allow for ‘Crazy Katee’ to come into play at all."
Bo-Katan Kryze may be the first Clone Wars character to get the live-action treatment, but she won't be the last. In the latest episode of The Mandalorian, Bo-Katan points Din Djarin in the direction of a Jedi named Ahsoka Tano, who will be portrayed by Rosario Dawson. Check out our list of the essential Clone Wars and Rebels episodes to watch to become even more familiar with these iconic characters.
In case you aren't familiar with the Mandalorian who famously takes off her helmet in The Mandalorian season 2, check out who is Bo Katan?