When she is introduced in Star Wars: The Clone Wars she is 14 years old, and she is 17 when the war ends. During this time, she has short(ish) headtails:

14 year old Ahsoka 17 year old Ahsoka

After that, she is shown with medium/long headtails when she is 32 years old in the show Star Wars Rebels:

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So WHY are her headtails are so sort in The Mandalorian? (in which she is 45 years old)

enter image description here

I will remind you that Togrutas' headtails continue to grow longer as they get older, and an adult of Ahsoka's age should have much longer headtails than she does in The Mandalorian. Shaak Ti, another female Togruta and Jedi who worked at the cloning facility on Kamino during the Clone Wars, has very long headtails in comparison to Ahsoka's, and she is 40 years old (in this picture)!

40-year-old Shaak Ti

This was not an unknowing mistake on the part of the director of the episode. In fact, the director of Chapter 13, "The Jedi" was Dave Filoni himself! Dave Filoni practically created both shows mentioned above, Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels. So it's not like he didn't know how a Togruta should look. He, of all people, should know what Ahsoka looks like!

So, having examined all this, Why does Ahsoka have short headtails?

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Is there a canon explanation?

  • Maybe they got chopped off in a fight at one point, and are still in the process of regrowing. Maybe Togruta head-tails are like orangutan cheek pouches, where the size is determined by social dominance.
    – nick012000
    Dec 17 '20 at 13:03
  • 2
    You could as easily ask why her eyes don't take up half her face like they did in Clone Wars. It was animated and stylized. Certain things just aren't practical to reproduce in live action. Dec 17 '20 at 14:27
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    n.b. the canonical name for these organs is lekku.
    – Tom W
    Dec 17 '20 at 15:17
  • You mention Shaak Ti; she had a scene in Star Wars episode III: Revenge of the Sith, where she was Grievous' hostage at the beginning of the film. That scene was finally removed and did not make it to the theatre version, but it can still be found and you can compare Shaak Ti's live-action head tails with her animated counterpart as well.
    – Stef
    Dec 17 '20 at 20:59

The simple answer is that its just easier in live action stunts/action for them to be shorter. ScreenRant has an article where they highlight a tweet from a Lucasfilm character designer agreeing with a fan asking the same thing.

  • 1
    Thank you! I guess it was just a technical thing after all. I'm still a little disappointed that Dave Filoni would put convenience ahead of a canon, but I guess you get what you get. Dec 16 '20 at 23:12
  • 10
    @JustanotherStarWarsgeek: It can also be an aesthetic decision, not just “convenience” — different things look good in live-action than in animation, and different parts of the franchise are going for different aesthetic atmospheres. For a detail like this, you don’t have to see it as “breaking canon” — just artistic differences in how these parts of the universe are being shown.
    – PLL
    Dec 17 '20 at 9:34
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    @JustanotherStarWarsgeek, it's not "convenience", it's "We have to film this on a budget". Dec 17 '20 at 15:41
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    @KeithMorrison Doesn't help that they spent half the season's budget on the Krait Dragon in episode 1 😉
    – Bitsplease
    Dec 17 '20 at 21:49
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    Experience from previous shooting also comes in. Orli Shoshan, who played Shaak Ti in Attack of the Clones, commented that shooting the Geonosis battle scenes were difficult because the bulk of the head prosthetics made it difficult to move. They weren't a problem when she was in the background sitting or standing, but trying to move was a pain. With a character who isn't someone briefly visible for a few seconds in the background but who is the focus with closeups of action, that sort of difficulty is much more visible. Dec 18 '20 at 5:55

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