‘Star Wars’: Dave Filoni Snuck a Fan-Favorite Prequel Trilogy Easter Egg Into ‘Rebels’ and No One Noticed

Whenever there’s a new Star Wars movie or TV show released, fans are always on the lookout for easter eggs referencing something from a past film or series.

These pop up often and can range from the subtle (Obi-Wan’s training remote droid on board the Millennium Falcon in The Force Awakens) to the not so subtle (Han Solo’s dice showing up in The Last Jedi and Solo). 

Dave Filoni, who outside of George Lucas may have one of the biggest creative presences in the Star Wars universe, has littered the shows he’s worked on with Easter eggs. He even dropped a rather clever and famous reference into the show Star Wars: Rebels. But what was the Easter egg? 

What is the show ‘Rebels’ about

Set between the end of Revenge of the Sith and the beginning of A New Hope, Rebels follows a small team of people focused on fighting the Galactic Empire as part of the Rebel Alliance.

According to StarWars.com, the series acts as a “storytelling bridge” between the animated Clone Wars series and the Star Wars movies. 

The show begins with Darth Vader instructing the Empire to continue hunting the remaining Jedi. The show then follows the exploits of the young Force-sensitive man Ezra Bridger and Jedi Kanan Jarrus. The show features plenty of appearances by important characters seen in other films, including: 

  • As previously mentioned, Darth Vader
  • The droids R2D2 and C3PO
  • Senator Bail Organa of Alderaan
  • Obi-Wan Kenobi
  • Darth Maul
  • Ahsoka Tano
  • Princess Leia Organa
  • Lando Calrissian
  • Wedge Antilles
  • Grand Moff Tarkin

The show is able to interweave the stories of these characters with the show’s larger narrative. While they never really serve as the show’s sole focus, their presence helps develop and flesh out their stories in the films and TV shows. The show has also featured several iconic duels, like the fight between Ahsoka and Vader or between Obi-Wan and Maul. 

The show has had other references to famous characters from the films and shows that came before it. 

Anakin Skywalker’s hatred of sand

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That brings us to one of the most “meme-able” quotes from the prequel trilogy. As he’s serving as Padme Amidala’s personal bodyguard in Attack of the Clones, Anakin Skywalker gets to connect with her and in doing so, reveals a lot of information about his past. He famously commented on his hatred of sand.

According to Rotten Tomatoes, here’s precisely what he told Padme: 

“I don’t like sand. It’s coarse and rough and irritating and it gets everywhere. Not like here. Here everything is soft and smooth.”

The line has become meme fodder for fans in recent years. It’s an example of the wooden dialogue the prequel trilogy can be characterized by. So what exactly does this scene have to do with Rebels? 

The fan-favorite prequel Easter egg Dave Filoni snuck into ‘Rebels’

Executive producer/director Dave Filoni
Executive producer/director Dave Filoni | Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Disney

An eagle-eyed fan on Reddit noticed a reference to Anakin’s hatred of sand in Rebels and made a meme out of it. The character Sabine Wren says, “Stupid sand, gets everywhere.”

The meme a picture of that above another picture that featured Anakin’s face photoshopped over several characters in the film The Wolf of Wall Street while they chant “One of us! One of us!” 

Was the reference intentional? Almost certainly. Filoni is one of the most plugged-in people behind the scenes of the Star Wars universe. The line is quick and inoffensive enough that you may not notice if you’re not a Star Wars superfan or not paying close attention.

But to the diehard fans, it likely delivered a hearty chuckle. One of the coolest things about Star Wars is how the creators behind it keep finding ways to call back to the things fans loved. This is just another example of that.