Giancarlo Esposito Reveals What Drew Him to Play Moff Gideon in The Mandalorian

Giancarlo Esposito, who plays Moff Gideon in The Mandalorian, does an interview with Star Wars Insider's upcoming edition in which he discusses his experience in the Star Wars show and how he views the character. Esposito has devoted his career to playing the villain; from his renowned roles as Gus Fring in Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul to his brief cameos as Stan Edgar in The Boys, the actor is essentially Hollywood's go-to bad guy.

Esposito's Moff Gideon is the main antagonist of the 2019 Disney+ live-action Star Wars web series The Mandalorian. He is a former officer of the Imperial Security Bureau who is responsible for spearheading the Galactic Empire's Great Purge of Mandalore and is also the archenemy of the lone Mandalorian gunfighter Din Djarin. In the show's latest season, Moff Gideon will be appearing to remain as the big bad. The show's creator, Jon Favreau, previously revealed that he created the character with the actor in mind.

“It was hard to say no to Jon Favreau when he called to tell me he’d written a role for me! It was a great honor. I knew it would be exciting, whether it had been Star Wars or some other story that spurred my imagination. But the world of Star Wars is one that I’ve admired since I was younger, and I’ve wanted to see films return to that mythological level of storytelling. That’s something that I think the Star Wars franchise has done so very well. You know, I’ve loved working on The Mandalorian because it’s about wonder and anticipation. When Jon asked if I had any requests for the character, I said, ‘Yes. I want to have a cape like Darth Vader!’” Esposito narrated.

The Mandalorian
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Credit: Disney+
The Mandalorian

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The actor further explained, “I always look for a story that exemplifies the journey of a hero. With Moff Gideon, I see it as being an anti-hero’s story. What lies beneath the words and actions of the journey the character is on, a journey that we all take? Whether a hero realizes it or not, it encompasses courage or truth—that energy inside us that allows us to get to where we want to go. I’m committed to playing this guy who thinks he is the master of the universe and that he can run it better than anyone else. Who is willing to push everyone’s buttons?

“However, I attest that often the villain, the anti-hero, is a fallen hero. They have the same qualities as the hero, but are characters who missed the mark, who wanted to be seen but didn’t feel heard, and overcoming that is, in its way, a heroic journey.” Esposito concluded.

New episodes of The Mandalorian season 3 are hitting Disney Plus every Wednesday.

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