Baylan Skoll wasn’t Ray Stevenson’s first canonical role in the Star Wars universe. That distinction goes to a Mandalorian named Gar Saxon whom he voices in four episodes of Dave Filoni’s animated Star Wars series, encompassing both “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” and “Star Wars Rebels.”
That said, in interviews he conducted at the Star Wars Celebration in April, he seemed particularly excited about his debut live-action Star Wars character. He told Entertainment Weekly, for example, that his first time wielding a lightsaber on set, he couldn’t help vocalizing the iconic lightsaber sound effect. While discussing Skoll’s character, meanwhile, he repeatedly stressed how much he appreciated the part. “There’s something that’s driving him that Dave Filoni and Jon [Favreau] know, and is hopefully going to be revealed throughout the telling,” he said. “And it’s just breathtaking.”
So, while Stevenson himself may not be around to see the positive reception to the work he put into his character, fans can rest assured that his acclaimed performance was the product of what seems to have been a genuine sense of enthusiasm.