Disney certainly has something bigger than they already own as they have Star Wars, and the story is now so great that it is in new movies and TV shows. Disney XD has shown two seasons of Star Wars Rebels, a series that takes place in between Episodes III and Episodes IV, and Season 3 is going to bring Kanan, Ezra, and all of their rebel friends back into a darker world. A fan-favorite character from the expanded universe, Grand Admiral Thrawn, is going to make an appearance, and he is going to be a serious antagonist that could last many seasons. This is what is known about Star Wars Rebels Season 3 release date, new trailer, and tie-ins to Star Wars Rogue One.
For those that don't remember the Season 2 finale, I will spoil a few things here, so you should just watch it. It really was quite epic as not only did it depict the return of Darth Vader (who has appeared on the show a few times before), but Darth Maul as well. The rebels went to a world so Ezra could learn more about the force, and they found Maul as a rather despondent dark Jedi. He is kind of like the evil version of the hermit established by Yoda and Ben (Obi-Wan) Kenobi, but his motives aren't really known as yet.
It is clear that Maul is going to meet Ezra and possibly the other rebels again. Wouldn't it be great if Ezra is seduced by Maul to join the dark side? It is something that we haven't really seen of Ezra in the first two seasons, and Kanan is going to be really angry if that plot twist happens.
Maul's face does appear on the new trailer. Also revealed on the new trailer is Ahsoka, who met up with Darth Vader on the finale. It was pretty dynamic as she had to face-off with her old apprentice, but her fate remains unknown.
The character, first introduced in the Clone Wars series, is too well-developed to die. Clone Wars, which takes place before Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, clearly established this character, but there still isn't a reason why she does not appear in the films. Yes, I know that the right hand just didn't talk to the left in the Star Wars franchise, but the showrunners of Star Wars are too smart not to have some in-canon explanation of "whatever happened to Ahsoka".
However, the big reveal on the trailer is Grand Admiral Thrawn. Thrawn is a character from the Star Wars expanded universe, first revealed in the Heir to the Empire trilogy written by Timothy Zahn. That book series was a way to continue the Star Wars universe after The Return of the Jedi, but it has been made sadly moot and non-canon since Disney took over and wrote new films.
Grand Admiral Thrawn was the big villain who took over the remnants of the Empire after the defeat of Emperor Palpatine and the second Death Star. Now, it looks like he is some military leader who wants to kill all the Star Wars Rebels. Yikes.
There will be other developments on the show, like some of these side-characters like Sabine Wren will be developed, and many are curious about the tie-in with Rouge One and Star Wars Rebels. Each of these Star Wars stories take place about the same time, perhaps, so there is a chance of a crossover.
A character from Clone Wars is going to be appearing in Star Wars Rogue One with Saw Gerrera. I just can't see how the Star Wars showrunners could resist a crossover between the animated series and the film, because it would make all forms of Star Wars on the big screen and small screen canon works.
See for yourself when Star Wars Rebels begins on September 24, and Star Wars Rogue One will appear in theaters on December 16.