At one time, it seemed like talk of Ewan McGregor reprising his role from the Star Wars prequels in a new solo movie was nothing more than a rumor, from a certain point of view. In truth, the highly anticipated Obi-Wan Kenobi Disney+ TV show is coming soon and with Hayden Christensen also returning to the galaxy far, far away.
As one would expect from a series that was kept under wraps for years and spun-off from the famously secretive Star Wars movies franchise, there is not very much else about the plot of Obi-Wan Kenobi that we can reveal, save just a couple of details. However, there is even more we can confirm about the series, including who else is in the cast and the crew. We will be sure to let you in on all of that and more in the following quick, convenient breakdown of all we know about the long-awaited TV show, starting with an exciting update regarding the production.
Obi-Wan Kenobi Filmed In Los Angeles From April To September 2021
In the summer of 2019, during Disney’s annual D23 expo, a TV show focused on the Jedi Master once played by the late Alec Guinness was confirmed after years of speculation of a feature-length Obi-Wan Kenobi movie. According to an official press release, the filming of Obi-Wan Kenobi would begin in April 2021 and also took place in Los Angeles, as star Ewan McGregor revealed while speaking to Eddie Izzard in a Twitter video from February 2021. As Deadline reported the following September, the actor confirmed during a backstage Q&A after his Emmy win for Netflix’s Halston that principal photography had recently wrapped, adding that the series “will not disappoint.”
Obi-Wan Kenobi Will Stream Exclusively on Disney+
Neither Ewan McGregor’s interview with Eddie Izzard nor Disney’s press release offered any insight as to when Obi-Wan Kenobi will be available to watch, outside of further confirmation that Disney+ will be its exclusive streaming home. By this point, we can be certain that it will not show up on our list of 2021 TV premiere dates. However, according to an interview with McGregor by The Hollywood Reporter, the series is expected to premiere in 2022.
The Star Wars TV Show Takes Place 10 Years After Revenge Of The Sith
Disney's announcement did, however, indicate when in the Star Wars timeline the solo TV series will take place. In the following excerpt from a Men’s Journal interview in 2019, Ewan McGregor also revealed details of Obi-Wan Kenobi’s time setting:
Disney’s press release more specifically explains how the story begins a decade after the events of Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith, in which Ewan McGregor’s character failed to preserve the Jedi Order and keep his friend and apprentice, Anakin Skywalker, from being lured to the Dark Side. Well, as we now know, the Obi-Wan Kenobi show intends to touch on that conflict again by, apparently, bringing these frenemies back together.
Hayden Christensen Has Joined The Obi-Wan Kenobi Cast As Darth Vader
In mid 2020, a rumor that Obi-Wan Kenobi was recruiting another Star Wars prequel trilogy star began swirling and, by the following winter, it was confirmed that Hayden Christensen’s Darth Vader is coming back, indeed. After all the hate the Canadian actor received from playing a young adult Anakin Skywalker, seeing him get a second chance to play the iconic Sith Lord again, and for more than a few seconds at Star Wars: Episode III’s ending, is some of the most exciting news to come out about this series, if you ask me. Christensen will also reprise Anakin Skywalker on the Ahsoka cast along with Rosario Dawson in the title role of the Mandalorian spin-off.
Ewan McGregor Reprises His Role And Executive Produces Obi-Wan Kenobi
Of course, even without any formal appearances by Darth Vader, Ewan McGregor returning as Obi-Wan Kenobi is more than enough reason to watch the Disney+ TV show. The 50-year-old, Golden Globe-winning Scotsman, and many people's favorite thing about the Star Wars prequels, has also signed on as an executive producer for Obi-Wan Kenobi. Also executive producing are Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy, Senior Vice President of Live Action Development & Production Michelle Rejwan, lead writer Joby Harold, and Deborah Chow, who has another position on the series we will talk about soon.
Kumail Nanjiani And Other Star Wars Newcomers Are In The Obi-Wan Kenobi Cast
Among the saga newcomers on the Obi-Wan Kenobi cast are Oscar nominee Kumail Nanjiani, Moses Ingram from the Queen’s Gambit cast (and speculated to be a young Ahsoka Tano), O’Shea Jackson Jr. (who played his father, Ice Cube, in Straight Outta Compton), and Benny Safdie, who wrote and directed Uncut Gems with his brother, Josh. Along with other newbies like Indira Varma, Rupert Friend, Simone Kessell, Sung Kang, and Pen15 cast member and co-creator Maya Erskine, this is looking to be a pretty great ensemble, but we suspect one important cast member is missing. With returning Star Wars vets Joel Edgerton as Uncle Owen Lars and Bonnie Piesse as Aunt Beru, we wonder if a young Luke Skywalker cameo is upon us.
The Mandalorian Director Deborah Chow Will Helm Obi-Wan Kenobi
Speaking of Luke Skywalker cameos, I imagine that this new series will likely fall prey to fans comparing it to The Mandalorian - which would be hard to blame anyone for, if we are being honest. Luckily, Deborah Chow, who helmed two of the Disney+ mega-hit’s most acclaimed chapters, is directing all six confirmed episodes of Obi-Wan Kenobi. However, Chow has explained that this show will be different from The Mandalorian, despite its star actually claiming the contrary.
Ewan McGregor Says Obi-Wan Kenobi Will Use The Same Technology As The Mandalorian
To clarify, Ewan McGregor’s explanation for how Obi-Wan Kenobi will be like The Mandalorian has more to do with the technical work going on behind the scenes than the story. This is what the actor had to say in that Twitter interview with Eddie Izzard:
The technology Ewan McGregor referred to was a large-scale virtual film stage used when filming The Mandalorian called The Volume. Built by the visual effects wizards at Industrial Light & Magic, the set replicates any desired location in the background and perfectly matches up with camera movement to convincingly create the illusion that actors really are wherever in the Star Wars universe they appear to be. The makers of Obi-Wan Kenobi will apparently be using the same method.
Also, given how beloved The Mandalorian has proven to be, it is nice to know that Ewan McGregor is a fan, too. Perhaps, its “old-fashioned TV western” style may inspire a few new ideas for his performance on Obi-Wan Kenobi. Maybe he could go the reverse route and portray the disgraced Jedi Master like a ronin samurai in exile, a la Yojimbo.
Jason has been writing since he was able to pick up a washable marker, with which he wrote his debut illustrated children's story, later transitioning to a short-lived comic book series and (very) amateur filmmaking before finally settling on pursuing a career in writing about movies in lieu of making them. Look for his name in just about any article related to Batman.
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