Who plays Grand Admiral Thrawn in Ahsoka?

Cameron Frew
Grand Admiral Thrawn in Ahsoka and Lars Mikkelsen in The WitcherDisney+/Netflix

Grand Admiral Thrawn, one of the most formidable villains in Star Wars history, has made a comeback in Ahsoka – but who plays him?

In our review of the sixth chapter, we called it an “ominous leap into both the unknown and the arms of familiar friends and foes – for the first time in years, Star Wars has a threat that’s substantial.”

While we pick up with Ahsoka and Huyang inside the mouth of a star whale, we mostly follow Baylan, Shin, Morgan, and Sabine as they arrive on Peridea, the purrgil graveyard in the Unknown Regions and the homeworld of the Dathomiri.

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Soon after they land, an enormous Star Destroyer flies overhead. As they step on board, they come face to face with hundreds of Night Troopers and their long-sought-after Imperial leader: Grand Admiral Thrawn.

Who plays Thrawn in Ahsoka?

Lars Mikkelsen as Grand Admiral Thrawn in the Ahsoka castDisney+

Grand Admiral Thrawn is portrayed by Lars Mikkelsen in Ahsoka, reprising his role from the animated Star Wars Rebels series.

Thrawn appeared in just 13 episodes of Rebels, making his small-screen debut in the franchise in 2016. However, the character has a long history in the galaxy far, far away, having first popped up in the expanded universe’s Thrawn trilogy of novels in the ’90s, part of the Legends canon. One such book is titled Heir to the Empire, believed to also be the name of Dave Filoni’s upcoming Star Wars movie.

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Mikkelsen’s return was confirmed at Star Wars Celebration this year, where he took to the stage after the trailer showed the villain in live-action for the first time. “It was a very emotional moment that I didn’t expect to have. But I think there’s a lot of love to be taken care of from the audience. And I felt enormous gratitude. It was amazing,” he told EW.

“When David finally asked me if I wanted to do it, there were no doubts. Of course, I wanted to do that, so I’m very excited. But [as far as] the transition between Rebels and the actual live-action character? I hope it works!”

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As for what newcomers should expect from Thrawn, the actor explained: “He’s a top strategist. He’s always seven paces ahead of anybody else. And ruthless, of course. But only when it’s needed, actually. I think he thrives also with the creativity of the surroundings. I mean, he’s not using people in a bad way. He’s using their creativity to reach his goals.”

Mikkelsen, who’s the brother of Mads, has also starred in House of Cards, The Witcher, and The Kingdom.

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Ahsoka Episodes 1-7 are available on Disney+ now, which you can sign up for here. You can see our predictions for the finale here, and check out our other coverage below:

Episode 1 review | Episode 2 review | Episode 3 review | Episode 4 review | Episode 5 review | Episode 6 review | Episode 7 review | Ahsoka cast and characters | Who plays Grand Admiral Thrawn? | Who is Captain Enoch? | Who is Marrok? | What time does Ahsoka come out? | How many episodes are there? | When does Ahsoka take place in the Star Wars timeline? | How long are the episodes? | Where was Ahsoka during the original Star Wars trilogy? | Darth Sion and the Eye of Sion explained | Who is Jacen Syndulla? | What are purrgil? | The World Between Worlds explained | Why does Anakin call Ahsoka Snips? | Ahsoka budget: How much did it cost? | Dark Jedi vs the Sith | How old is Ahsoka? | The Siege of Mandalore explained | When does Ahsoka die? | Night Troopers explained | Dave Filoni divides Ahsoka fans with Thrawn casting

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About The Author

Cameron is Deputy TV and Movies Editor at Dexerto. He's an action movie aficionado, '80s obsessive, Oscars enthusiast, and a staunch Scot. He earned a First-Class Honours Degree in Multimedia Journalism from Glasgow Caledonian University, accredited by the NCTJ and BJTC. He began his career at UNILAD, starting as a Junior Journalist and becoming Entertainment Editor prior to joining Dexerto. You can contact him at cameron.frew@dexerto.com.