Andy Serkis is no stranger to the world of Star Wars, having appeared as Supreme Leader Snoke in The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi. So it was a surprise to see him turn up, without CGI or make-up, as Kino Loy in Andor.
As is standard for Star Wars, this has kicked off all sorts of theories and speculation. Chief among these is, as Andor is set more than 40 years before The Force Awakens, the theory that Kino Loy is somehow related to Snoke.
Serkis has killed that idea straight away when appearing on The Playlist’s Andor podcast:
“Yeah, [Kino] is definitely not related in any way, shape, or form to Snoke. Let’s just get that clear.”
He went on to talk about his motivation to return to the galaxy far, far away and he had come concerns:
“I lived through all of the Snoke theories [on the sequel trilogy] and just thought, ‘Oh no, this isn’t going to be good. What can of worms is this going to open up? And so I did consider, ‘Is this a good idea?’ Because it’s just going to confuse the hell out of people.
But, I was such a big fan of ‘Rogue One’ and when Tony Gilroy first talked to me about it, he was very compelling; and he didn’t have to convince me because he’s such a great storyteller, great filmmaker, and brilliant writer, and producer and showrunner.
But he really got me when he was explaining the arc of this character and obviously where he ends up in this series. So, it really spoke to me, because the Andor series, like ‘Rogue One,’ feels very grounded.”
The last episode seemed to show there were some hidden layers to Kino and maybe all is not as it seems. Hints were being dropped in snippets of dialogue between inmates at the prison factory of Narkina 5.
We have frequently talked about Andor being Star Wars for grown-ups, without the simple good vs evil clarity of the main stories. Serkis says he saw this too, and that is why he signed up:
“This is a very murky end of the swimming pool to be in with Andor. And Cassian’s journey mixing with all of this political intrigue and seeing characters really going through it. The psychological depth of every single role and the amazing cast that it’s attracted to. And so, for all of those reasons, it seemed like a good idea and I could hopefully assuage the rumor mill and not get people too confused.”
Only three episodes left, and things are brewing nicely in the world of Imperial politics.