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Katee Sackhoff as Bo-Katan Kryze on The Mandalorian (2020)

The Mandalorian Season 2 is halfway through its run, and it’s given fans plenty to be excited about. As viewers wait for the seemingly imminent arrival of Rosario Dawson’s Ahsoka Tano, they’ve already been treated to another returning character in the form of Bo-Katan Kryze. And what was most exciting is that Katee Sackhoff, who voiced the character in animated shows, reprised her role for the character’s live-action debut. The episode, entitled “Chapter 11: The Heiress,” is arguably the best episode of the season thus far, and director Bryce Dallas Howard is a big reason for that. Sackhoff has since explained why she was so eager to work with Howard on the installment.

Ahead of shooting the episode, Katee Sackhoff was aware of Bryce Dallas Howard’s prowess as both a performer and director. The actor seems to love the voice Howard is steadily bringing to her work:

When I found out that she was directing this episode, I couldn’t have been more excited. I’ve been a fan of her for a very long time as a performer, but then also as a director. And seeing the voice that she is developing for herself in this industry as a director and as a teacher is really important.

Sackhoff further explained to StarWars.com that Howard did not disappoint at all. What she loved most about working under Howard’s direction is that despite being the director, Howard is always aware that she doesn’t know everything. This served as a point of comfort for Sackhoff, who liked that the two could learn together:

One of the great things about Bryce is that she knows that she doesn’t know everything. So not only is she there leading you and teaching you, but she’s learning at the same time. And that’s what makes a great leader. She’s such a great director and she’s such an actor’s director.

Bryce Dallas Howard is still in the early phase of her directing career, but you wouldn’t be able to tell based on her two episodes of The Mandalorian. The actor/director has a keen understanding of the Star Wars mythos, and she can deftly balances story and spectacle. She even manages to throw in nods to other famous works.

To her credit, Katee Sackhoff also did a masterful job of bringing the character of Bo-Katan to life and, since her debut, she’s been feeling the love from the fans. Still, she credits both Howard and producer Dave Filoni for helping her find the best way to translate the character to a new format.

At this point, you have to wonder if Bryce Dallas Howard could be given the keys to her own Star Wars project, just like fellow Mandalorian director Deborah Chow. Her work speaks for itself, and an endorsement from Katee Sackhoff only helps her case.

Be sure to watch The Mandalorian when new episodes drop Fridays on Disney+.

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