Actor Ewan McGregor is back in action as the titular “Obi-Wan Kenobi” in the latest “Star Wars” live-action series to hit Disney+.
He and co-star Hayden Christensen have reprised their roles from the Star Wars prequel trilogy to bridge the timeline between Episode III and Episode IV of the Skywalker Saga. Earlier this week, the Emmy-award-winning actor sat down with Entertainment Weekly to discuss what fans can expect to see from Kenobi in a galaxy far, far away.
Ewan McGregor Says Disney+ Series Bridges The Gap Between The Prequel & Original Trilogy
The “Halston” actor explained that the Disney+ series “fills that gap” between the prequel and original trilogy. “I always felt that there must be a good story to tell between Episode III and IV, and we spent a lot of time and energy finding that story,” he explained.
“And I think we did a great job,” he added. “I have to say, I think Deborah Chow is a brilliant director and we’re lucky to have her direct all of the episodes. So it really is her vision. It’s one person’s vision from start to finish.”
Unlike other “Star Wars” Disney+ series – mainly “The Mandalorian” and “The Book of Boba Fett” – McGregor explained, “We don’t have different directors coming in and out.” Instead, Deborah Chow “worked tirelessly with the writers to find this brilliant story.”
When it comes to the Kenobi that viewers see in the series, McGregor said, “I think it’s just going to make [fans] understand him more from where we left him in Episode III to where we find him with Alec Guinness in Episode IV.”
Obi-Wan Kenobi Is Closer To Alec Guinness Than The Prequel Series
Ewan McGregor explained that “at the beginning of our story, we know that it’s 10 years after Episode III. So we know that the Jedi Order have been all but destroyed, and everyone who wasn’t killed in Order 66 has fled and is in hiding. Yoda and some of the other Jedi who Obi-Wan would’ve known and loved are unable to communicate with each other.”
“So he’s much closer to the Obi-Wan Alec Guinness played in that he’s on Tatooine and he’s a solitary man,” he continued. “He’s living as normal a life as he can so as not to draw attention to himself, because the Jedi are being hunted down to be destroyed and he will know that. And his last responsibility to his old life is to look over Luke Skywalker, who is with Owen and Aunt Beru, and he’s doing that from a distance so as not to draw attention to their family in the moisture farm there.”
Several scenes in the trailer already hinted at drama between Kenobi and Owen. From McGregor’s point of view, he said, “I think Owen feels like Obi-Wan only cares about the boy because he may show signs of the Force. And he knows that Obi-Wan is pretty single-minded about that, and if it seems that Luke Skywalker shows that he has the Force, that Obi-Wan would want to train him to be a Jedi. And especially at this time when the Jedi are all but wiped out.”
‘I feel there’s part of Obi-Wan who’s given up, you know?’
“Playing him, I was split about this because I feel there’s part of Obi-Wan who’s given up, you know?” Ewan McGregor continued. “That he feels like the time of the Jedi is over, that they lost. And whether he really feels that, he sort of says it. He feels that it’s done. They lost the battle.”
He added, “And I think Owen wants Luke Skywalker to have a normal childhood, to grow up in an ordinary way and not to be bothered by that. And also, there’s the risk that, knowing that the Jedi are being hunted down, if Obi-Wan is found out and discovered, then [Owen] doesn’t want him anywhere near Luke Skywalker because they would also take Luke.”
Fans can watch Ewan McGregor reprise his role as “Obi-Wan Kenobi” when the limited series becomes available to stream on Disney+ on Friday, May 27.