THE MANDALORIAN: Mercedes Varnado Reveals The Surprising Way She Was Cast In The Disney+ TV Series
Mercedes Varnado/Sasha Banks had a small, yet memorable role as Koska Reeves in a recent episode of The Mandalorian, and the actress has now revealed the strange story of how she was cast in the show.
Mercedes Varnado is best known as WWE Superstar Sasha Banks, and given what a devoted bunch wrestling fans tend to be, it's no great surprise that she doesn't regularly check her DMs!
However, that could have been a very costly mistake for the pro wrestler and actress who appeared in The Mandalorian's "Chapter 11" as Bo-Katan's right-hand woman, Koska Reeves.
"One day, for some reason, I was going through my Instagram DMs, which I normally don’t go through, and a casting director messaged me and said, 'Jon Favreau really wants to interview you for something for Disney,'" Varnado recalls. "And I was like, 'Oh my god, OK!' And the next thing I know, I got a FaceTime from him and he told me about The Mandalorian. I just couldn’t even believe it."
"I was like, 'What? Is this for real?' I’m so used to WWE and the wrestling realm that I could not believe this was happening," she continues. "At the click of my fingers, we were shooting on set and now it’s here. It’s so awesome. And, at the same time, I’m the WWE SmackDown Women’s Champion, so life is really cool and crazy right now."
Talking of SmackDown, Varnado went on to explain how her in-ring persona influenced her character in The Mandalorian.
"I also put in a lot of my wrestling character, as well as the moves. Instantly, you see me do a drop kick, an elbow and a fireman’s carry. Maybe Star Wars fans don’t know what that is but my fans do. So I wanted to bring so many different elements to my character that I hope I can explore more and more someday."
The way fans have responded to this episode all but confirms that we will see more of this trio of Mandalorians before too long, as their quest for the Darksaber is bound to bring them back into contact with Din Djarin. Unfortunately, it doesn't sound like we'll be seeing them again during season two.
What did you think about Koska Reeves in The Mandalorian?
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some revealing concept art from "The Siege."
Now he's done stealing Frog Lady's eggs, The Child has turned his attentions to cookies. When his classmate on Nevarro refuses to share his treat, the adorable creature uses his Force powers to take them, and that leads to one of the show's funniest moments to date later in the episode.
Nevarro has changed a lot since we last visited the planet, and that's thanks to Greef Karga and Cara Dune. Earlier in the episode, we saw her taking down some thieves, though the creature she saves definitely didn't have the ability to breathe fire; clearly something changed during shooting!
The Imperial base is another of Moff Gideon's projects, though we caught a glimpse of some deformed clones there (one of whom looked an awful lot like Supreme Leader Snoke). The Child's "M-Count" appears to be vital to this process, and that's obviously a reference to Midi-chlorians.
As Din Djarin jetted back to make sure The Child was safe, Cara Dune and Greef Karga (alongside the Mythrol) made their way back to town...with the Empire on their tale! It was one of the show's best action sequences to date, and proved that Carl Weathers is a great fit for the Star Wars franchise.
"The Siege" ended with a visit aboard Moff Gideon's ship, though it wasn't a traditional Star Destroyer! Instead, the villain appears to be in charge of an Arquitens class ship. Those are most commonly associated with The Clone Wars, and while they were once used primarily by the Jedi, the Empire later made use of Arquitens-class command cruisers, so that's likely what we see here.