Disney has released a first look at Kanan, the “cowboy Jedi” character from the upcoming Disney XD animated series Star Wars Rebels.
Kanan is voiced by Freddie Prinze, Jr., who seems pretty excited to play a Jedi.
"For people who are around our age and a bit older, Star Wars is in our DNA," Prinze told USA Today. "I've heard 'May the Force be with you' about as many times as 'Hey, how you doing?'”
Set 14 after the events of Revenge of the Sith, Kanan is one of the few Jedi still alive following the Emperor’s enactment of “Order 66,” setting his clone army to wipe out the entire Jedi Order.
Kanan has been in hiding during the intervening years, putting down his lightsaber and picking up a blaster in order to attract less attention to himself. But Kanan will find the Force again when he and the crew of his ship, The Ghost, decide to fight back against the Empire.
"He's been forced to shove a massive part of his life under the bed, so to speak," Prinze says. "Is he living a lie? At a certain point, the lie kind of becomes the reality. And to suddenly be forced back into your Jedi ways, it'd be a bit of a challenge for him. And pretty awesome, too, when you can see what a Jedi can actually do."
Producer Dave Filoni describes Kanan as a “cowboy Jedi” because of Kanan’s quick wit, very unlike the other, mostly stoic members of the Jedi order. However, the character certainly has his serious side as well.
"He definitely has seen more than what a young man should see,” said Prinze “And what he had to see was pretty much the worst thing you would have to witness."
Star Wars Rebels will debut with a television movie and series of shorts on the Disney Channel this summer, followed by the full series on Disney XD in the Fall.