Star Wars may have just cast one of the most iconic Sith lords of all time
Let the games begin.
The Acolyte remains one of the most mysterious shows on the Star Wars roster. The series, helmed by Russian Doll showrunner Leslye Headland, follows a young Sith acolyte in the last years of the High Republic, a time that has never been explored on-screen.
But now the show is finally ramping up production, and casting notices are coming out. It appears Headland isn’t the only Netflix veteran scooped up for the series — Deadline reports that Squid Game breakout star Lee Jung-Jae will play the “male lead” opposite Amandla Stenberg. But just what could his role be? Rumors may have already revealed the answer.
There have been several theories surrounding the plot and cast of The Acolyte, mostly pulled from casting calls. In a leak reported by Bespin Bulletin, the main character of The Acolyte is Aura, the Sith acolyte played by Amandla Stenberg. There’s also Miri, her younger sister, and Paul, listed as a “white male in his 50s,” according to the leak. These are probably code names, so don’t expect a middle-aged guy named Paul to be running around the Star Wars galaxy once the series lands.
So just who could Lee be playing? The leak also mentions that Aura’s main friend and ally will be a CGI male alien with the codename “Penn.” If any character included in these leaks has the potential of a “male lead,” it’s this one.
If this is the character he’ll be playing, it’s disappointing that Lee’s expressive face will be hidden under makeup and special effects, but it’s not a horrible fate. Other Star Wars characters, like Ahsoka Tano and Cad Bane, have expressed themselves in alien grab, and some of the most beloved Star Wars characters rarely show their face at all.
There’s even a fan theory that, as the only hint of an alien role in The Acolyte, this “Penn” character could actually be Darth Plagueis, the Sith master who would go on to mentor a young Emperor Palpatine. Saying he’s been rumored to appear in the show is an understatement; practically every theory surrounding this show involves Plagueis. If that’s the role Lee Jung-Jae is stepping into, he’ll be taking on one of the most influential Star Wars characters ever conceived.
Regardless of who he plays, Lee Jung-Jae will be a great asset for The Acolyte. In a way, it even has a lot in common with Squid Game: Both are shows about people caught up in a deadly game much bigger than they are. The Acolyte just happens to take place in a galaxy far, far away.
Squid Game is now streaming on Netflix.