The Star Wars franchise is currently looking towards likely the biggest expansion in its history, especially in terms of how much new content will arrive in a short period of time. The animated realm will live on with The Bad Batch, coming on Star Wars Day as a follow-up to the first four episodes in Season 7 of The Clone Wars, while live-action entries coming to Disney+ make serious production headway as well.
Currently building considerable hype is Ewan McGregor's Obi-Wan Kenobi solo series, which is inching closer to starting up production for its streaming release. McGregor is putting in the intense physical work to get into shape while his facial hair reports for duty for the iconic role, and the iconic Tatooine set is being built from the ground up with Kenobi serving his exile thereafter Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.
With this series taking place between Episode III and Episode IV, questions are popping up about characters that may be coming into play from either or both of those Skywalker Saga movies. McGregor recently teased one that has already made his mark in the Disney+ arena as well.
EWAN MCGREGOR TALKS OBI-WAN KENOBI
In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Obi-Wan Kenobi star Ewan McGregor took a trip down memory lane on the series going into development while also teasing an important character that may show up in the project.
McGregor had been in discussions for years to return as the Jedi Master, although he was forced to keep his casting a secret when it initially happened. Even seeing things on social media about fans crying for his return, he confirmed that he "wasn't able to say anything," but admitted that it was "pretty humiliating" to imagine that there were even discussions about being replaced in the role he's played since 1999:
"I'd see stuff on social media like, 'They better cast Ewan as Obi-Wan,' and I wasn't able to say anything. But it was pretty humiliating to think that [Disney] might be thinking about casting someone else."
Filming for the series hasn't quite started yet, but McGregor did say that he's "done some screen tests with [director] Deborah [Chow] and other people" to prepare for filming. Working with her for just a short time so far, he's convinced that Chow is "a really, really good director" as they prepare to go into the trenches together:
When asked if some of those screen tests could potentially be with a young version of Luke Skywalker, McGregor of course had to play coy with his answer:
"That's very possible. I don't know."
'Obi-Wan Kenobi' was confirmed to begin filming in Los Angeles in May 2021.
Ewan McGregor played coy when asked if Luke Skywalker will appear in 'Obi-Wan Kenobi,' simply saying "that's very possible. I don't know."
Ewan McGregor teased that there are “monster, two-and-a-half-hour sessions of sword fights and hand-to-hand” training while preparing for 'Obi-Wan Kenobi.'
A SKYWALKER ON THE HORIZON?
Even the most casual of Star Wars fans instantly recognize the name Luke Skywalker. After all, he's arguably the most popular character in the franchise after appearing in some capacity in Episode IV through Episode IX and setting the standard for epic cameos with his appearance in "Chapter 16" of The Mandalorian.
Obi-Wan Kenobi is set to explore the time period not long after the Empire first rose to power, taking place about ten years after the end of Revenge of the Sith. Fans will remember Ewan McGregor's character left baby Luke on Tatooine with his uncle Owen and his aunt Beru in this film's closing moments before exiling himself on the same planet.
Should Luke make an appearance in this series, the timing of this story would put him at about ten years old chronologically. The biggest mystery in this case will be how this connects back to Luke and Obi-Wan's first canon meeting with each other in Episode IV: A New Hope, when they were played by a young Mark Hamill and Alec Guinness.
It's possible that Obi-Wan may not have recognized an adult Luke when they met in the desert in the 1977 movie, especially considering the likelihood that a meeting in this series may only be a short one if it happens at all. Regardless of the circumstances, should the original Star Wars leading man make an appearance, the cheers should be heard all over the world just as they were for his cameo in The Mandalorian last year.
As for the timeline of this series going into development, it's becoming more evident by the day how much of a bond Ewan McGregor has built with the Jedi master. Playing the role in all three prequel movies was a major turning point in his career; even nearly two decades later, the star is making it clear that he will don the Jedi robes and wield the blue lightsaber for as long as he can.
Obi-Wan Kenobi is set to begin filming soon, and it's scheduled for release on Disney+ in 2022.