Ewan McGregor and Hayden Christensen starred together as Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker in two “Star Wars” prequel films, “Attack of the Clones” and “Revenge of the Sith” (although McGregor got his franchise start in “The Phantom Menace”), and now the duo will be reunited on the upcoming Disney+ “Star Wars” series “Obi-Wan.” Based on a new Disney+ sizzle reel (via Deadline), fans now know the new series will include one huge lightsaber duel between the old-friends-turned-enemies. See concept art from the series in the images below.
“There’s a hunger for this character to come back,” McGregor says in the sizzle. “The fans have been waiting long enough, ya know?”
All episodes of “Obi-Wan” are being helmed by Deborah Chow, who directed two fan-favorite installments of “The Mandalorian.” The show picks up after the events of “Revenge of the Sith,” with Obi-Wan living in secret on Tatooine and tasked with protecting a young Luke Skywalker. Chow set the stage for the series by saying, “This is a quite a dark time we’re coming into with him, just being a Jedi; it’s not safe. There are Jedi hunters out there.”
Filming on “Obi-Wan” kicked off in March. McGregor said in late April that shooting the Disney+ series was already a better experience than his first run as Obi-Wan in George Lucas’ prequel trilogy because of the technology being used by Disney these days. As is the case on Disney+’s “Star Wars” series “The Mandalorian,” “Obi-Wan” was filmed using the virtual reality StageCraft technology developed by Jon Favreau and VFX artist Rob Legato. Instead of acting against blue-screen backdrops, performs work on a set backed by a massive LED screen that projects photorealistic environments.
“If you’re in a desert, you’re standing in the middle of a desert,” McGregor told THR at the time. “If you’re in the snow, you’re surrounded by snow. And if you’re in a cockpit of a starfighter, you’re in space. It’s going to feel so much more real.”
McGregor spent a large chunk of time filming the prequel trilogy acting in front of green screens. Lucas relied on CGI more and more with each installment, so much so that physical sets and backdrops were replaced entirely by blue-screens by the time filming was underway on “Revenge of the Sith.”
“He wanted more and more control over what we see in the background,” McGregor said. “After three or four months of that, it just gets really tedious — especially when the scenes are… I don’t want to be rude, but it’s not Shakespeare. There’s not something to dig into in the dialogue that can satisfy you when there’s no environment there. It was quite hard to do.”
“Obi-Wan” will debut on Disney+ in 2022.