The Star Wars prequels tend to be divisive among longtime fans, to put it mildly. (Although George Lucas has sworn that viewers raised on them prefer them to the original trilogy.) But there’s one aspect of them most people can agree was solid: Ewan McGregor made for a fine, fiery, young-ish Obi-Wan Kenobi — at least after The Phantom Menace. So good news: Deadline has confirmed that the Scottish actor is in talks to return the role for an as-yet-untitled show on their forthcoming streaming service Disney+.
McGregor was in his late 20s when he first took the role, and it took him from a cult figure, primarily known for Trainspotting (and, among even cooler people, for Shallow Grave, Little Voice, and Velvet Goldmine, too), and made him a household name. The character, of course had been made iconic by Sir Alec Guinness, who earned an Oscar nomination for his soulful work in the original Star Wars and spent much of his life post-Obi-Wan doing things like telling young Star Wars fans they can have his autograph but only if they agree to never watch a Star Wars film again.
In The Phantom Menace, McGregor’s Obi-Wan was still green, an earnest and very serious apprentice to Liam Neeson’s soon-to-be-iced Qui-Gon Jinn. With Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith, however, he stepped up his game, grew out his hair and a beard, and attacked the role with relish, revealing a capacity for amusing frustration. That turned tragic as his charge, one Anakin Skywalker (by then played by Hayden Christensen), was slowly seduced to the Dark Side.
There are no details on what this Disney+ show will be, if it will focus on a middle-aged Obi-Wan, much as T2 Trainspotting caught up with a middle-aged ex-junkie Mark Renton. But it will give the already-shooting The Mandalorian some company in the Star Wars TV-verse.
McGregor, of course, has had a rich and varied post-Star Wars career. Later this year, for instance, he’ll be in another sequel to a beloved classic, playing grown-up Danny Torrance in the Shining follow-up Doctor Sleep.