How Will Obi-Wan Kenobi Use Hayden Christensen As Darth Vader?
There was a lot of big news during Disney Investor Day, especially where Star Wars is concerned. Perhaps the biggest news to old-school fans was that Hayden Christensen would be returning to the character he played in the prequel trilogy. They say this is just for the Obi-Wan Kenobi series, and that Hayden Christensen will be playing Darth Vader. However, there is reason to be skeptical that’s all he’s doing. First, they’re not going to make Ahsoka and not have Anakin in it. (And, as a friend pointed out, he could appear as a Force Ghost in that post-Return of the Jedi series.) Yet, there’s the question of what exactly Hayden will do in the Obi-Wan show, where he’d be covered head-to-toe in Vader’s armor.
The driving force (pun not intended but graciously accepted) behind the desire for an Obi-Wan series is Ewan McGregor. The star of the Star Wars prequel trilogy said he felt like he was begging for job when forced to repeatedly lie about plans to return to the character. Now, I don’t mean that he was campaigning for the role. Rather, fans want the Obi-Wan series because they want to see Ewan embody that character again. Because there’s really no burning story that needs to be told there.
The few canon stories we’ve gotten about his time there have effectively told it. His mission is to protect Luke Skywalker (in lieu of training him, which Uncle Owen forbid). However, he struggles with his urge to be a Jedi and help people. So, unless they’ve got some canon-shattering stuff planned, that’s likely what we’ll get. So, where does Hayden Christensen fit in to Obi-Wan Kenobi, let alone as Darth Vader?
The Roles Hayden Christensen Might Play for Obi-Wan Kenobi
Were I a betting man, I’d suspect we’ll get a few short scenes in Obi-Wan Kenobi of a maskless Darth Vader with a crispified Hayden Christensen fully exposed. It’s possible this is all we’ll get of him in the series, too. Yet, I (and probably countless others on Twitter, Reddit, and elsewhere) suspect that we’re going to see more of him than that. In the video shown only to investors, Ewan McGregor talks about reuniting with Hayden. Both he and Kathleen Kennedy heavily implied that they will engage in lightsaber combat. A rematch from Revenge of the Sith sounds like something that makes sense for the story. Except that rematch came in A New Hope. So, will they upend the canon of the original trilogy? Probably not.
I guess Hayden Christensen will play Darth Vader as he was when Obi-Wan Kenobi last saw him. That is to say, he will look and sound very much like Anakin Skywalker. I’d love to see an Obi-Wan haunted and taunted by visions of his old friend. Combine that with isolation, failing to train Luke, and other emotional baggage, ol’ Ben will have a lightsaber fight out in the Dune Sea with a ghost. The story we’re going to see should show us how Obi-Wan became so certain that the only way for Luke to win the war was to destroy Vader. Neither he nor Yoda believed Anakin (or perhaps anyone) could be returned from the Dark Side.
These are all educated guesses and speculation, to be clear. It’s possible that they figure out a way to have Obi-Wan and Vader meet in person without betraying the original story. Still, it would be a hell of a way to get the Obi-wan and Anakin show one last time.
Obi-Wan Kenobi will begin filming in the first quarter of 2021.
So, how do you think they are going to bring Hayden Christensen back as Darth Vader for Obi-Wan Kenobi. Tell us your hopes, dreams, and story pitches in the comments below.
Featured image via Lucasfilm
Joshua M. Patton is a father, veteran, and writer living in Pittsburgh, PA. The first books he read on his own were comics, and he's loved the medium ever since. He is the greatest star-pilot in the galaxy, a cunning warrior, and a good friend. His book "What I Learned: Stories, Essays, and More" is available in print from Amazon and from all electronic booksellers.