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‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ Was Set for Film Trilogy If ‘Solo’ Hadn’t Bombed: ‘It Crushed Us’

Screenwriter Stuart Beattie was "devastated" the trilogy got the ax as Lucasfilm pivoted to Disney+ shows.

A middle-aged, bearded man in brown robes with a 10-year-old girl in a green tunic; still from "Obi-Wan Kenobi."

“Obi-Wan Kenobi”

Lucasfilm Ltd.

Ewan McGregor’s return to “Star Wars” was supposed to be a film trilogy and not a Disney+ series, but the box office bomb of the prequel film “Solo: A Star Wars Storycaused a strategic shift.

Stuart Beattie’s “Obi-Wan Kenobi” script was repurposed for the Disney+ series of the same name, as the screenwriter told The Direct. And while Beattie has a “story by” and writing credits for multiple episodes, he explained that he had no involvement in the series itself.

“I wrote the film that they based the show on,” Beattie said. “I spent like a year, year-and-a-half working on it. And then, when the decision was made not to make any more spinoff films after ‘Solo’ came out, I left the project and went on to other things. Joby [Harold] came on and took my scripts and turned it from two hours into six. So, I did not work with them at all, I just got credit for the episodes because it was all my stuff.”

Beattie explained, “It was ‘Solo’ that changed the direction of the system. I like ‘Solo,’ personally, but it hadn’t made a lot of money. It certainly crushed us. Devastated, absolutely devastated. But, that’s the business, you know, highs and lows. I’m glad it got made. I’m glad the show got made. I’m proud of my story that [got] told. I’m glad my characters are all through it. And I’m glad I got credit for it. I wish, I wish they’d been able to make my movies.”

The original “Obi-Wan” pitch to Lucasfilm had a three-story arc to capture the “three different evolutions” of McGregor’s Obi-Wan before the events of “A New Hope.” Beattie’s concept was for a “full trilogy” and actor McGregor had agreed to sign on. The first movie arc ultimately became the Disney+ series with the message of: “‘Surrender to the will of the Force. Transport your will, surrender your will. Leave the kid alone,'” per Beattie.

“The second [movie] was thinking about where Kenobi ends up,” Beattie shared. “And one of the most powerful and probably the most powerful moment in all of Obi-Wan’s story is that moment where he sacrifices himself in ‘A New Hope.’ Great moment, you know, makes you cry. But, if you stop and think about it, it’s a pretty sudden thing, to just kind of go be fighting a guy, to see Luke and go, ‘I’m gonna die.’ You know, that to me, that required forethought. That required pre-acceptance that this was going to happen.”

However, the second film script never went into development, as Lucasfilm axed the film project before Beattie could continue. With McGregor ready for “Obi-Wan Kenobi” Season 2, Beattie hopes his second movie ideas come to fruition in series form. “If I have anything to do with the second season of ‘Obi Wan,’ that’s the character evolution that I would take him on,” Beattie summed up.

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