In the new Star Wars: Ahsoka, the actor Ray Stevenson, who played the bad guy Baylan Skoll, got a special honor in the first episode that came out on Disney+ on Tuesday night.
Stevenson passed away at 58 years old on May 21 while he was on the Italian island Ischia. This happened after the filming for the series was already finished. In the first episode of Ahsoka, just before the credits roll, there is a message on the screen that says, “For our friend, Ray.”
In Ahsoka, the character played by Stevenson, Baylan Skoll, is one of the main bad guys in the series. Baylan is a Dark Jedi and a significant opponent in the show. He managed to survive Order 66 by escaping into space and has now become a hired soldier.
He uses an orange lightsaber. His student is Shin Hati, played by Ivanna Sakkno. They are teaming up with Morgan Elspeth, portrayed by Diana Lee Inosanto, who was seen as a villain in The Mandalorian Season 2. Together, they are trying to locate Grand Admiral Thrawn, played by Lars Mikkelsen.
In May, when the news about Ray Stevenson’s passing became known, the main actor of Ahsoka, Rosario Dawson, shared a tribute on Instagram for her fellow actor. “Gone too soon from this world. At a loss for words… just wanted to mark this moment and share your ever ready and present smile. Love you forever. Holding your family in my heart. #LegendsNeverDie.”
Sakhno also posted, “Ray… My heart is shattered and I can’t fathom you not being here. My dear friend. My Master. A giant with an even bigger heart. You understood the infinite. Your love for life, your partner Elisabetta and your 3 boys was unyielding. Knowing you in this lifetime had been one of the greatest gifts. I carry your light within me. Fly freely, Blackbird.”
Ahsoka wasn’t Ray Stevenson’s first time being part of the expansive Star Wars universe. He provided the voice for a character named Gar Saxon, who was a Mandalorian commando, in both “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” and “Star Wars Rebels.”
Besides this, he had other notable roles in his acting career. He played the Marvel antihero Punisher in Punisher: War Zone, portrayed the heroic character Volstagg in the Thor movies, was Sir Dagonet in King Arthur, took on the role of Marcus Eaton in the Divergent movies, portrayed Blackbeard in Black Sails, and acted as Gov. Scott Buxton in RRR.