Production on the Obi-Wan Kenobi series for Disney+ is now underway, and even for those who have been involved with the franchise for some time, getting to see sets and characters from that galaxy far, far away remains a thrill. After playing Obi-Wan Kenobi in The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, and Revenge of the Sith, Ewan McGregor will reprise his role for the Disney+ series, but unlike the green-screen sets that dominated the prequels (especially the latter entries), the new series makes use of The Mandalorian‘s cutting-edge Stagecraft technology.
While speaking with Pedro Pascal for Variety’s Actors on Actors feature, Ewan McGregor expressed his admiration for the new technology.
I just came directly from our set on the “Kenobi” series, and I’m working with so many of your crew from “The Mandalorian.” In fact, Deborah Chow is directing all of our series, and I know she directed episodes of your first season. I’m having such an amazing time down there with that incredible technology, and not being in front of too much green screen and blue screen… I did the first three films in the late ’90s and into the 2000s, and by the time you did Episode 2 and 3, literally 90% of the scenes were just on green sets with green floors and green walls, or a blue set with blue sides and blue walls.
Ewan McGregor has experienced more than most when it comes to the Star Wars franchise, but even he isn’t immune to the giddy pleasure of acting alongside Stormtroopers or Jawas. “I’ve got to be so careful,” McGregor said, wary of mistakenly revealing any spoilers. “There’s no secret to when this series is being set, but I had to walk past two Stormtroopers. I realized I’ve never acted with a Stormtrooper because mine were clones, you know? It was the clone army. So I’d never seen a Stormtrooper. So I was walking past them in this scene. I turned around — and I was 6 years old again.” McGregor continued: “I’m so close to one and I got a fright, you know? So crazy. Then I asked someone, ‘Were there Stormtroopers in my films? Because I don’t think I’ve seen a Stormtrooper for real before.’ They were like “No, they weren’t Stormtroopers; they were clones.” And Jawas, I had another scene with a little Jawa.” Although McGregor did share scenes with Clonetroopers in the Prequel Trilogy, they were created by CG, so getting to see an actual Stormtrooper in the flesh, so to speak, is an entirely different matter.
Obi-Wan Kenobi takes place a decade after the events of Revenge of the Sith and in addition to Ewan McGregor, also stars Moses Ingram (The Queen’s Gambit), Joel Edgerton (Boy Erased), Bonnie Piesse (The Vow), Kumail Nanjiani (Eternals), Indira Varma (Game of Thrones), Rupert Friend (Homeland), O’Shea Jackson Jr. (Straight Outta Compton), Sung Kang (F9), Simone Kessell (Reckoning), and Benny Safdie (Uncut Gems). The series will also feature the return of Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader.