Nerdist: I want to start with the final scene of the season. What brought Cassian to Luthen’s ship?
Tony Gilroy: For what he says—to make the oath. For clarity, for closure, as we say, right? If everybody is out hunting you, do you want to live like that? Plus he’s made his peace. I think he’s absolutely legit. I think everything they’re saying at the end there is completely legit. He really means it, Like, “Man, I can’t take it.” He doesn’t really have much left to live for, does he, if he doesn’t go that way? What’s the point? And he doesn’t want to run anymore. He wants to be inside himself. To be outside yourself and be wrong with yourself and realize it? He means that, “Kill me or take me.”
Do you think he expected Luthen to kill him?
Gilroy: I don’t think he knows. I think he’s hoping. But I don’t think he went there to try and game [the situation]. I think it’s legit. I know that’s how Diego played it. It’s a legit question.
You referred to the series before it started as “the education” of Cassian Andor.
Gilroy: This season, yeah.
So what are the most meaningful lessons he learned during the season? And which ones still await him?
Gilroy: To piggyback and go backwards, as I said, when you’re outside yourself… the guy you meet is not right with himself at all. He’s utterly disillusioned. He’s completely self-interested. And he’s lying for things that aren’t even really worth it. He has a temper he can’t control. He has impulse control that he can’t control. You take that guy and then you give him the worst day of his life, he’s becoming right with himself over the course of this long odyssey.
So you want to see him wake up. And you want to see him learn. And you want to see him radicalized without having a shopping list where, “Oh, this is this week’s lesson of the week.” You want to make sure that along the way you tick all the boxes. “Oh my God, look what the Empire is doing here. Look what it’s doing here and how this place is being ruined. Look how these people are being oppressed and look what’s happening to me.” And, “Oh my God, here’s someone who comes along and puts a dialectical spin on it with the manifesto.” And, “Here’s people who’ve been affected by it. I thought I had it bad? What happened to Cinta’s family when storm troopers slaughtered them? And why is Sergeant Gorn doing it? Why is he turning?”
Everybody has a different reason. As Vel says on the way up the hill, “Everybody has their own rebellion.” And all the variations of what that means, and all those motivations, are going to become the colors of his holistic coming together. So by the end of it, he’s right with himself. He’s where he needs to be. “I’m going to do this one thing.” And going forward, what do you do with that? How do you become a leader? How do you survive? And how is everyone going to survive scaling up and getting to Yavin and Rebel Alliance? If paranoia and secrecy are your product, Luthen Rael has been building a startup company in his garage, and when he does Aldhani, it’s like he opens the garage door. As Kleya says, “We’re going to go loud.” And Denise Gough (Deadra) says, “It’s not a robbery, it’s an announcement.”
That difficulty going forward for Luthen—and then for everybody else the same thing—is if everything you’re doing is based on secrecy, how do you collaborate with people? How do you join up? What happens to the original gangsters and what happens to the outliers and what happens to the people who really sacrificed? And so that’ll be the issues going forward.