It seems like only yesterday Disney acquired Lucasfilm and announced a full slate of ‘Star Wars’ films. In actuality, though, we’re now closer to the end of that initial slate than we are to the beginning, with ‘The Last Jedi’ marking the third entry of the Disney era and a fourth – ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ – due in the spring. With the imminent release of ‘Solo’ leaving only ‘Episode IX’ remaining from the initial slate (Another, an anthology film that was to have been directed by Josh Trank, was quietly shelved when Trank set fire to his career during the production of the critically panned ‘Fantastic Four‘.) we are now that much closer to learning what Disney’s longer terms plans for ‘Star Wars’ have in store.
Very few announcements have been made to date regarding those future plans. The most significant bit of news so far has arguably been that ‘The Last Jedi’ director Rian Johnson has signed on to shepherd a new trilogy to the screen. But Johnson’s trilogy is said to be something altogether different, focusing on something other than the Skywalker saga. In more familiar territory, though, we have also learned that a spinoff focusing on Obi-Wan Kenobi is in development, with Stephen Daldry in talks to direct.
But of course, the most exciting possibility raised by the spinoff is that of Ewan McGregor’s return as the titular Jedi Master. McGregor’s Obi-Wan, after all, was a highlight of the much maligned prequel trilogy, with the actor proving that demonstrating a natural charm that George Lucas couldn’t beat out of him. He also made a vocal cameo during Rey’s Force vision in ‘The Force Awakens’ and has more than once stated his willingness to slip back into his Jedi robes. But will he get the chance? Speaking in the wake of his recent Emmy win for ‘Fargo’, McGregor addressed the possibility:
“There’s a lot of talk. I’d be happy to play him again, but I don’t know any more about it than you do.”
That’s a bit frustrating, though it could simply be a matter of how early in development the project is. If Lucasfilm does proceed with an Obi-Wan movie, they’d have to be crazy not to enlist McGregor. Not only his he obviously eager to return to the role, but he is still the right age to play Obi-Wan during his self-imposed exile on Tatooine, perhaps in a story reminiscent of the character’s appearances in ‘Star Wars: Rebels’ or in the backup strips in Marvel’s ongoing ‘Star Wars’ comic.
‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ is now playing in theaters. The next installment, ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ is expected to arrive on May 25, 2018. Be sure to check back with ScienceFiction.com for more on this and other upcoming ‘Star Wars’ movies as it becomes available.