Obi-Wan Kenobi’s Ewan McGregor is still inspired by Alec Guinness

Obi-Wan Kenobi’s Ewan McGregor is still inspired by Alec Guinness

When the Obi Wan Kenobi The series starts on Disney Plus Friday, May 27Ewan McGregor will return as the beloved Jedi Master he last played 17 years ago in the Star Wars prequel Revenge of the Sith. On Thursday, McGregor told reporters he got back into character fairly easily, but acknowledged that finding Kenobi’s actual voice was proving difficult.

“When we came to do [screen testing] scenes with these other actors, I was doing this vague English accent and it wasn’t Obi-Wan’s voice at all. And I was like, ‘Oh, my God. It’s not very good,” said the Scottish actor. “Fortunately, we had months before we started filming. So I went back and did some homework with Alec Guinness and what I had done before.”

The Kenobi character was introduced 45 years ago in 1977 Star Wars: A New Hope, where he was played by Guinness, who died in 2000. McGregor played a younger version of the character in the prequel trilogy and is returning for the new show. McGregor said at a press conference on the show Thursday that he still looks to his predecessor for inspiration.

Alec Guinness’ Kenobi battles Darth Vader in the original Star Wars movie.


“It’s all about Alec Guinness, [he] had that spirit behind his eyes the whole time, he had a spark,” McGregor said. “I always try to think of him … to hear him say the lines.

Despite the humor and warmth instilled in Kenobi by Guinness, the new show finds the character in a dark place a decade after the events of Revenge of the Sith and nine years before those of A New Hope. The Jedi Order acted as guardians of peace and justice, but the Galactic Empire all but wiped them out as they took over the galaxy in a totalitarian grip.

Adding insult to injury, Kenobi’s former apprentice Anakin Skywalker fell to the dark side of the Force and became Imperial Enforcer Darth Vader.

New villain Reva, approaching with a red lightsaber

Reva is looking for Jedi on the Disney Plus show.


There’s even a bunch of goons, the Inquisitors, who hunt surviving Jedi around the galaxy. We’ve seen these lightsaber-wielding villains before in Rebels CGI animated series and video game Jedi: Fallen Order. This show brings them into action and introduces a new one in Reva, aka the Third Sister, played by Moses Ingram (who also spoke at the press conference and whom you may know from The Queen’s Bet).

“She’s really smart, she plays offense, and she’s always 10 steps ahead,” Ingram said of her character. “I think I was most intrigued by her fervor, for what she does…it’s fun to be mean.”

For series director Deborah Chow (who previously directed part of the Star Wars show The Mandalorian’s better episodes), the opportunity to do a character-driven story was a source of excitement.

“In a similar way to something like Joker or Logan [with quite a different tone]where you take a character out of a big franchise…and you go a lot further with them,” she said during press, “that seemed really exciting to me to do in Star Wars. “

Chow also revealed that she turned to one of the franchise’s beloved elements to help her actors get into character: John Williams’ classic score of the nine Skywalker Saga movies.

“Music brings the emotional component. What John Williams did is so inextricably linked – he is Star Wars,” she said of the composer’s work. “We put it on, and all of a sudden I see Moses grow, like, two inches. Everyone answers it.”

Williams reportedly returned to write the main theme of the showwith Natalie Holt, the composer behind Marvel Cinematic Universe series Lokiapparently manipulating the rest of the soundtrack.

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