Star Wars Rebels: Heroes of Mandalore is a one-hour television movie that serves as the premiere to the fourth season of Star Wars Rebels. It premiered on October 16, 2017.
Before making its television premiere, the first part of the special was first screened at the Star Wars Celebration in Orlando on April 15, 2017. The second part was shown at Fan Expo in Toronto on September 2, 2017.
The Mandalorians and the Jedi, led by Sabine Wren, were attempting to rescue Sabine's father, Alrich Wren, who was being held prisoner in an Imperial Outpost on Mandalore. The place was guarded by Saxon Clan Mandalorians, who serve the Empire. On Sabine's lead, the Mandalorians and the Jedi moved in and attacked the outpost. A Battle between the Mandalorians and the Imperials broke out. They quickly overpowered Imperial forces holding the outpost, but as the battle went on Walker reinforcements arrived. It almost looked like the Empire had the upper hand, especially when the leading trooper threatened to kill Sabine. However, unexpected reinforcements arrived, forcing the Imperials to retreat. With the outpost theirs, they went inside, only to discover the place was empty. The Mandalorians who helped them were members of Clan Kryze. Among them was Lady Bo-Katan Kryze: the sister of Mandalore's late ruler, Satine Kryze. According to Bo-Katan, the whole thing was a trap to lure them in. Unfortunately, Ursa Wren was unable to inform them when she got word of this intel, and sent Bo-Katan ahead to reinforce Sabine. According to Fenn Rau, Bo-Katan was still seen by many as Mandalore's rightful ruler, but after the Empire took over she refused to obey the Emperor and was betrayed by Clan Saxon. Seeing that Bo-Katan could be Mandalore's true leader, Sabine offered her the Darksaber but turned her down.
Before heading out, Ursa arrived with news that the Empire was transporting Sabine's father to the Mandalorian capital for a public termination. They arrived at where the prisoner convoy transporting Sabine's father was sure to pass. Their plan was to ambush the convoy before they made it to the capital. Ursa's group reported that they had engaged Saxon's transport and had diverted the prisoner convoy towards the canyon where Sabine's group was waiting to ambush them. They spotted the three transporters approaching, and once they were close enough, Sabine engaged them. She distracted the Imperials and Commandos long enough for the others to move in and join the battle. They take out the speeders and troopers protecting the transport holding Sabine's father, and Ezra climbed aboard to save Alrich before the transports went over the cliff.
Afterwards, Alrich thanked Ezra for saving him and then turned to Sabine. After years of being apart, he embraced his daughter with hug, delighted to see her again, as Sabine was to see her father. He even complimented the artwork on Sabine's armour. They prepared to get back on the move, when they received word from Ursa's group that the Empire had just deployed a single scout walker with no additional support. Listening in on Fenn's comm, they hear a sound that Sabine dreadfully recognised. She desperately ordered them to retreat, but then they spotted an explosion from where Ursa's group was. Fearing the worst, Sabine rushed over with the others in follow. Upon arriving, they found every Mandalorian under Ursa's command disintegrated. All that was left of them was their armour and burning ashes. All, except Sabine, were puzzled by what could have done this, only to be told by Arich that it was a weapon created by Sabine.
Sabine remained devastated by what just happened, and was already blaming herself. The weapon that killed all these Mandalorians was her own design. It had the ability to neutralise Mandalorian Armor. It had long been a rumour until now, Sabine, overwhelmed with guilt, had no doubt that the Empire was going to use it against the Mandalorians. Believing that her mother and brother were dead, Ursa and Tristan emerged from the smoke, injured by alive. They got caught in the edge of the weapon's ray, but managed to make it out when Sabine alerted them. However, the others were not so lucky. Just then, the Imperials showed up to finish them off, accompanied by three TIE Fighters. However, the Jedi and the Mandalorians were rescued by a Gauntlet Fighter. Two of the surviving TIEs pursued them and took out their weapons. As Sabine affected repairs, Bo-Katan and Ezra flew outside with Jetpacks and took out the pursuing TIEs. Meanwhile at the Mandalorian capital of Sundari, Tiber Saxon was showing Grand Admiral Thrawn, by hologram, a recording of the weapon's test, calling it the Duchess. As Thrawn could see the energy pulse from the generators mounted on the walker was drawn to Mandalorian armor, super heating it and instantly vaporising its targets. All the while doing no harm to their Imperial Stormtroopers. While he admitted to be impressed by the weapon's effectiveness, Thrawn had some concerns. The people of Mandalorian might turn against the Empire instead of swearing loyalty to it. Tiber, completely loyalty to the Empire, assured the Grand Admiral that fear would compel the people of Mandalore to join the Empire once the weapon was unleashed. Thrawn also had another concern. The weapon was not at its full capacity, as Tiber was only working with parts of the prototype. In order for it to be fully operational, Tiber needed the weapon's creator, Sabine Wren.
Meanwhile, as the Mandalorians and Jedi flew to their base camp, Bo-Katan violently held Sabine against the wall, calling her a traitor for what she had brought upon Mandalore. Sabine admitted her treachery. At the time, she was young and arrogantly took on designing that weapon. When she discovered the Empire was planning to use it against her people she sabotaged the prototype and destroyed the plans. She thought that would be the end of it, but it now appeared the Empire had somehow rebuilt it. When they arrived at their base, Sabine was already made unwelcome by the other Mandalorians who threaten to shoot her for her treachery. Ursa and Tristan threaten to attack back if anyone tried to kill Sabine, but she stepped forward to accept the consequences of her actions. However, Sabine first admitted her regrets, but pointted out that while the Empire had the weapon it was only functioning at a fraction of its capacity. She gave the Mandalorians a choice to fight each other or work together to destroy this weapon once and for all. Even though angered like everyone else, Bo-Katan knew that Sabine was right. This was not the time to be divisive, and since Sabine was the one who designed the weapon they were going to need her if they were to succeed in destroying it. At the briefing, Alrich believed that Tiber was keeping the weapon aboard his Star Destroyer outside of Sundari. No doubt it would be well guarded. Sabine's plan was to get two teams aboard. One to find the weapon, and the other to wipe out every shred of data on it from the Imperial computer systems. Though tempted by the idea of turning the weapon against the Imperials, Sabine stood by her original plan to destroy it. Sabine planned to personally foresee to the weapon's destruction accompanied by Bo-Katan, while Kanan and Ezra took Chopper to the data core. As they went through their infiltration plan, Bo-Katan voiced her changed opinion about Sabine to Fenn. Though she doubted her from the start, she had seen that she had become an inspiring courageous leader.
Later, the Jedi and Mandalorians arrived at Sundari, and boarded Tiber's Star Destroyer unnoticed. They found the weapon's core had been removed from the walker that attacked Ursa's troops, but Sabine had a strong bet that it was being kept in the control room above. Suddenly, they were spotted and a gunfight broke out. During the battle, Sabine and Bo-Katan made their way to the weapon while Ezra, Kanan and Chopper headed for the data core. Sabine and Bo-Katan found the weapon, but it activated and struck them with its energy pulse as Tiber Saxon entered the scene. At Tiber's mercy, Sabine refused to help him upgrade the weapon. So he tried persuading her by striking her and Bo-Katan again with the weapon's energy pulse, not to kill them but to make them suffer. He even turned it on his colleague, Captain Hark, who was worried the Empire might use the weapon against all Mandalorians, including themselves. At last, Sabine gave in, especially when he threatened to kill Bo-Katan. Despite her plea not to, Sabine went ahead in making adjustments to the weapon. However, when Tiber tested it out the weapon backfired on him and all the Stormtroopers aboard. Sabine was on the verge of wanting Tiber to die and use the weapon against the Empire, only to be stopped by Bo-Katan. She tried to convince her that this was not the way to free Mandalore, reminding her that she came to make things right. For Mandalore, Sabine used the Darksaber to slash the weapon, causing it go breech. With data on the weapon erased as well, the Jedi and Mandalorians made a hasty retreat before the weapon blew up, and with it Tiber and his Star Destroyer.
Upon returning to base camp, Bo-Katan was surprised to discover Clans Eldar, Rook, Kryze, Vizsla and Wren awaiting her leadership. Sabine again offered her the Darksaber and this time she accepted it, declaring herself leader of Mandalore.
- Taylor Gray as Ezra Bridger
- Vanessa Marshall as Hera Syndulla
- Freddie Prinze, Jr. as Kanan Jarrus/Stormtrooper #2/Lead Vizsla Warrior/TIE Fighter Pilot
- Tiya Sircar as Sabine Wren
- Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa as Alrich Wren
- Katee Sackhoff as Bo-Katan Kryze
- Andrew Kishino as Hark/Stormtrooper #1/Imperial Transport Driver #1/Lead Kryze Warrior
- Kevin McKidd as Fenn Rau
- Dave Filoni as Imperial Mandalorian Commander/Lead Wren Warrior
- Ritesh Rajan as Imperial Transport Driver #2/Tristan Wren
- Steven Blum as Stormtrooper #3/Stormtrooper #4
- Matthew Wood as Stormtrooper #5
- Tobias Menzies as Tiber Saxon
- Sharmila Devar as Ursa Wren
- Lars Mikkelsen as Thrawn
- Dave Fennoy as Kryze Pilot/Lead Eldar Warrior/Stormtrooper
- Bonnie Wild as Lead Rook Warrior
- This is the fourth and final television movie premiere in the series, following Star Wars Rebels: Spark of Rebellion, Star Wars Rebels: The Siege of Lothal, and Star Wars Rebels: Steps Into Shadow.
- This is the fourth Star Wars Rebels premiere episode to be screened at Celebration prior to its debut on television.
- The chase to save Alrich Wren was inspired by both the truck chase in Raiders of the Lost Art, and the tank chase in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.
- The design of Sundari was inspired by George Lucas' suggestions in The Clone Wars tv series.
- The Duchess is a reference to Satine Kryze. Which is ironic, as Satine was pacifist, and the Duchess is used for violence.
- In the original script, Sabine was to be "knighting" her Mandalorian soldiers with the Darksaber, creating a scorch mark on their armor.
- The Mandalorian Armor is referred to as Beskar. This is a term first used in Star Wars: Legends.
- In earlier drafts of the episode, Bo-Katan was more eager to use the Duchess instead of Sabine.
- This episode reunited Vanessa Marshall with her ex-husband Andrew Kishino, who originally voiced Saw Gerrera in The Clone Wars.