Every Live-Action Star Wars Character Who Debuted In Animation

Every Live-Action Star Wars Character Who Debuted In Animation
The Star Wars franchise is best known for its live-action movies and TV shows, but many characters debuted in animation. As one of pop culture’s most famous and influential science-fantasy franchises, it’s no surprise that Star Wars lends itself well to other visual mediums like comics, video games, and animation. Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels have proved especially popular, with their storylines forming the foundation for the current era of live-action Star Wars TV shows. Watching characters develop across storylines spanning different mediums makes the Star Wars franchise unique and highly rewarding.

Animated Star Wars properties have given the franchise numerous iconic characters, some of whose arcs have far-reaching ramifications that affect live-action films. This will be especially true for the upcoming Star Wars movies, as Dave Filoni’s The Mandalorian film will serve as the culmination of storylines that began years before with the animated shows. A few Star Wars characters who are best known for their live-action portrayals first appeared in animation, sometimes in wildly different fashions. From early 2D animated projects to the Disney+ TV shows, here is every live-action Star Wars character that debuted in animation.

Ahsoka Tano

Jedi Padawan Ahsoka Tano debuted in 2008’s Star Wars: The Clone Wars theatrical movie, joining its ensemble cast alongside prequel trilogy protagonists Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi. Leaving the order towards the end of the series after being framed for a terrorist attack, Ahsoka never became a full-fledged Jedi. Ahsoka went on to appear in Rebels season 2, and her popularity led her to have an audio-only cameo in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. She finally made her long-awaited live-action debut in The Mandalorian season 2, played by Rosario Dawson, who returned for a starring role in the Ahsoka series on Disney+.

Sabine Wren

Sabine Wren was a young Mandalorian who first appeared as the Ghost crew’s demolitions expert in Star Wars Rebels. She studied at the Imperial Academy on Mandalore until she realized the Empire planned to use her weapon designs against her people. Sabine fought alongside the Ghost crew and the Rebel Alliance until her friends convinced her to return home, where she and Clan Wren started a Mandalorian rebellion against the Empire. Sadly, Mandalore was destroyed at the end of the war, leading to a falling out between Sabine and Ahsoka. Sabine made her live-action debut in Ahsoka, where she finally learned to use the Force as a Jedi.

Ezra Bridger

Ezra Bridger was the main character of Star Wars Rebels, a street orphan who was taken in by the Ghost crew and trained as a Jedi by Kanan Jarrus. Although his life had taught him to be self-centered, Ezra grew into a selfless man and a courageous Jedi Knight, eventually sacrificing himself to defeat Grand Admiral Thrawn at the Battle of Lothol. Ezra appeared as a holo message in the Ahsoka series premiere before making his full live-action debut later in the season. Ahsoka and Sabine became trapped on Peridea, but they kept their promise to Ezra and got him home, where he was finally reunited with Hera Syndulla and Chopper.

Hera Syndulla

Hera Syndulla was the Rebellion’s best pilot and a leader among the Ghost crew, tolerating no nonsense aboard her ship. She was in contact with the Rebellion long before the Ghost crew knew they were a rebel cell, and she later rose to the rank of general. Hera and Kanan fell in love during their time together, eventually having a child named Jacen Syndulla. However, Kanan was killed before his son was born, leaving Hera to raise him throughout the war and the early days of the New Republic. Hera made her live-action debut in Ahsoka, doing everything in her power to make sure the galaxy was ready for Thrawn’s invasion.


C1-10P, a.k.a. Chopper, was a main character in Star Wars Rebels, serving aboard the Ghost. Chopper was a veteran of the Clone Wars, meeting Hera during the Battle of Ryloth and becoming her lifelong companion. In addition to a small role in Star Wars: The Bad Batch season 1, Chopper had a cameo appearance in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, showing up for a brief moment in the Rebel Alliance’s base on Yavin IV. Chopper returned to live-action in Ahsoka, still arguing with Hera in the heat of battle but also best friends with her son Jacen.

Jacen Syndulla

While Ahsoka’s Jacen Syndulla technically debuted in animation, he only had a brief cameo at the end of Star Wars Rebels. His proper introduction came in live-action, a young boy who dreamed of becoming a Jedi like his friends while displaying tremendous potential in the Force. Jacen’s story has not been told beyond Ahsoka, but he is sure to play a role in future Star Wars projects.

Captain Rex

Captain Rex first appeared alongside Ahsoka in The Clone Wars as the leader of the 501st that answered to Anakin. Rex fought alongside the Jedi “from the Battle of Christophsis to the Siege of Mandalore,” the latter of which was adapted in Ahsoka when Rex made his brief live-action debut. He also appeared in Star Wars Rebels, looking significantly older due to his accelerated aging but still a valued fighter in the Rebellion. Rex fought with Hera at the Battle of Endor, and Dave Filoni speculated that Rex may be the white-bearded trooper known as Nik Sant, though he would not confirm this theory.


Tasked with helping Jedi younglings build their lightsabers, Huyang debuted in The Clone Wars season 5. Huyang is the oldest confirmed Star Wars character, having been built around 25,000 BBY when the Jedi Order was founded. He transitioned to live-action in Ahsoka, traveling with her around the galaxy as she searched for Ezra and Thrawn. Huyang’s millennia of knowledge are an invaluable asset to the Star Wars franchise that future stories are likely to explore.

Hamato Xiono

New Republic Senator Hamato Xiono was the father of Kaz Xiono, the main character of Star Wars Resistance. Xiono was a career politician who viewed Leia Organa’s Resistance as a band of extremists, views he had held onto since the events of Ahsoka over two decades earlier. This marked Xiono’s first live-action appearance, the voice of the New Republic senators who were unconcerned with the Imperial Remnant and eager to transition away from the days of the Rebellion. Although Xiono maintained a prosperous career, he gradually pushed his son away, and they inevitably lost their homeworld of Hosnian Prime when the First Order fired Starkiller Base.

Ryder Azadi

Lothol’s Governor, Ryder Azadi, debuted in Star Wars Rebels after escaping an Imperial prison, later joining the Rebellion against the Empire on Lothol. Clancy Brown returned to play Governor Azadi in Ahsoka, with his voice and appearance making him one of the best Star Wars character transitions from animation.

Jai Kell

Jai Kell was an Imperial cadet in Star Wars Rebels season 1 until he met an undercover Ezra who convinced him to go on the run from the Empire. Kell returned in season 4 to help liberate his home, and by Ahsoka, he had become Lothol’s senator in the New Republic.

Bo-Katan Kryze

Bo-Katan Kryze debuted in The Clone Wars as both the second-in-command of the Death Watch terrorist group and the sister of Duchess Satine Kryze, the leader of Mandalore’s pacifist government. Bo-Katan was a far cry from her sister, murdering innocents during The Clone Wars and opportunistically betraying anyone necessary to install her as Mandalore’s ruler after the deaths of Pre Vizsla and Duchess Satine. However, Bo-Katan came to realize the error of her ways and fought for the good of her people, earning her place as Mandalore’s rightful ruler. Bo-Katan’s voice actress, Katee Sackhoff, reprises her role in The Mandalorian, seamlessly transitioning the character from animation to live-action.

Zeb Orrelios

1 Paragraph Zeb was a member of the Ghost crew throughout Star Wars Rebels, and his design was based on unused concept art for Chewbacca. Zeb’s design was recreated with CGI in The Mandalorian, but Steve Blum returned to voice the character from

Star Wars Rebels.

Saw Gerrera
Working alongside Jedi and Clone Troopers such as Captain Rex, Saw Gerrera was part of an anti-Separatist insurgency movement in The Clone Wars, pushing the droid army off Onderon. In The Bad Batch and Star Wars Rebels, Gerrera fought against the Empire, forming the Partisans, a brutal former Rebel cell. Forest Whitaker played Gerrera in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, playing a pivotal role in Jyn Erso’s eventual theft of the Death Star’s plans. Whitaker returned to play the character in Andor season 1, showcasing Saw’s frustration with other members of the Rebel Alliance and how his tactics are different.

The Grand Inquisitor

The Grand Inquisitor was the main villain of Star Wars Rebels, assigned by Darth Vader to hunt down Jedi like Kanan and Ezra. Season 2 revealed that the Grand Inquisitor was once a member of the Jedi Order, and The Clone Wars season 5 was retconned so that he was one of the Jedi Temple guards who arrested Barris Offee. The Grand Inquisitor was voiced by Jason Isaacs in Star Wars Rebels but was played by Rupert Friend when the character made his live-action debut in Obi-Wan Kenobi​​​​​​.

The Fifth Brother

The Fifth Brother was one of two Inquisitors who replaced the Grand Inquisitor following his death in the Star Wars Rebels season 1 finale. He was voiced by Philip Anthony-Rodriguez in Star Wars Rebels season 2 and played by Sung Kang in Obi-Wan Kenobi.

Boba Fett

The fan-favorite bounty hunter Boba Fett may have made his cinematic debut in The Empire Strikes Back, but his first onscreen appearance was in the wonderfully bizarre Star Wars Holiday Special’s animated segment. In the short, Boba uses a two-pronged Amban phase-pulse blaster, which would inspire a similar, disruptor-like weapon in The Mandalorian. Fett would go on to appear in three Star Wars saga films, The Mandalorian season 2, and finally his own spinoff show, The Book of Boba Fett.

Cad Bane

After the death of Jango Fett, Cad Bane became the galaxy’s de facto greatest bounty hunter, proving his deadly skill throughout The Clone Wars. Bane was trusted by not only the Hutt Clan but also Darth Sidious himself, taking on any job for the right price. Bane later appeared in The Bad Batch, though he failed his mission to deliver Omega to the Kaminoans. He made a surprise live-action debut in The Book of Boba Fett, still voiced by Corey Burton but physically played by Dorian Kingi. Although Bane was a quicker shot, Fett’s Tusken Raider training allowed him to defeat his old mentor and finally kill the legendary mercenary.

Hondo Ohnaka

The pirate captain Hondo Ohnaka first appeared in The Clone Wars, initially as a treacherous enemy of the Jedi whose double-crossings resulted in a brief partnership between Anakin, Obi-Wan, and the Sith Lord Count Dooku. Over time, however, Ohnaka became an occasional ally of the Republic, as long as there were profits out there to be made. Ohnaka appeared in Star Wars Rebels as well, assisting both Ezra Bridger and the fledgling Rebellion, but he made his actual live-action debut in the Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge theme park, played by Robert Nairne. Time will tell if the pirate captain appears in future movies or TV shows.

Commander Cody

Obi-Wan’s friend and second-in-command of the 212th Attack Battalion, Commander Cody debuted in the Legends novel Star Wars: Labyrinth of Evil by James Luceno, but his first onscreen appearance was in the 2003 Star Wars: Clone Wars 2D micro-series. Although his appearance is brief, his comically serious demeanor and banter with Obi-Wan hint at their longtime friendship, which is as strong in Legends as it is in canon. Cody later appeared in Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, where his Order 66 brainwashing compelled him to attack Kenobi, something he’d never have done in his right mind. This was confirmed when Cody returned in The Bad Batch, deserting the Imperial army once he realized what the Empire was doing to the galaxy.

General Grievous

The Kaleesh cyborg known as General Grievous (formerly Qymaen jai Sheelal) was created as a major Separatist villain in Revenge of the Sith, but George Lucas took advantage of the incredibly popular Clone Wars micro-series to give viewers an early look at the upcoming villain. Grievous was far less formidable in his live-action Star Wars debut than he was in Clone Wars, but the show’s series finale explains this by showing him suffering a critical injury in a brief encounter with Mace Windu. Grievous returned as a recurring antagonist in The Clone Wars, with Star Wars sound editor Matthew Wood returning to voice him from Revenge of the Sith.

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