It’s well known that despite being thrilled to nab the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi in The Phantom Menace, Ewan McGregor was far less thrilled by the actual process of shooting them. Not that it showed on screen, Ewan knocked it our of the park and cemented his place in Star Wars history for his pitch-perfect portrayal of a younger Ben Kenobi.
Given his seeming negativity towards the role, his name has been linked with a return to the role for years, and he has certainly not shied away from letting it be known he would be interested. A minuscule voice role in The Force Awakens was the first step, his attachment to the currently on-pause Kenobi standalone was another and now, speaking with Vanity Fair, he lays out his feelings on the role of Obi-Wan.
“Episode III was all green screen: they had us on green disks on a green floor with a green background, and a guy on the floor rotating us like chickens, as we lunged at each other with lightsabers. What keeps you emotionally grounded is the other actor. Episode II, I was on my own, speaking to thin air. But this scene was harrowing for Obi-Wan. I lose Anakin, and we see the danger of what it might lead to in Episodes IV, V, and VI. For all my moaning about green screen, I did enjoy playing Obi-Wan and this link to Alec Guinness. George Lucas wanted to do something very different with the prequels. That’s why people felt cheated. It was upsetting when people would laugh and joke about it. Now, many years later, the prequels meant a lot to the generation that were kids then. So from smirking, cynical opinions, now I’m getting feedback from the kids they were made for. I’m really happy about that.”
Ewan was interviewed by Vanity Fair as part of their 25 best scenes of the last 25 years, with the powerful post-lightsaber battle scene between Darth Vader and Obi-Wan on the shores of a Mustafar lava lake making the list.