Obi-Wan Kenobi’s Deborah Chow discusses lessons from The Mandalorian
As fans prepare themselves for the return of Ewan McGregor in the iconic role of Obi-Wan Kenobi for Disney+’s upcoming spin-off series, director Deborah Chow has made her debut in the Star Wars universe with the streaming service’s first series The Mandalorian in its newly-released third episode. In an interview with The New York Times, Chow spoke on the lessons she learned from Mandalorian creator Jon Favreau and animated universe creative head Dave Filoni going into the next series.
“One of the biggest benefits is that I just spent the last year in the Star Wars universe and I had great mentors, coming in under [Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni],” Chow said. “Absorbing that, I feel, was the best training I could have had to take on the next one. So much of it just feeling it and understanding it, on an instinctual level, to know what’s right and what’s wrong with it. And there’s so much knowledge — every prop, every costume is important. Every detail really matters.”
When discussing the upcoming series, Chow also revealed that times have become “complicated” for both the galaxy and the titular Jedi. She says diving into the six-episode series as a whole versus individual episodes is a very exciting prospect.
“There is so much going on between [Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope] that hasn’t been explored,” Chow said. “The idea of being able to go into a character journey plus the politics and plus all the vastness of the empire and what’s going on is exciting just because it feels like a proper period of history and sometimes that is hard to do in two hours. Sometimes with two-hour movies there is always an imperative for the action and the plot to move particularly fast and quickly and to go from action sequence to action sequence and there are many more aspects to storytelling that I find interesting.”
The new series will take place eight years after the events of Revenge of the Sith, where we last saw Obi-Wan delivering the infant Luke Skywalker to his Tatooine homestead. The series will be written by Hossein Amini (The Alienist, Drive) and directed by Deborah Chow. Chow, Amini, and McGregor will serve as Executive Producers alongside Kathleen Kennedy, Tracey Seaward (The Queen) and John Swartz (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story). Jason McGatlin, Lucasfilm’s Executive Vice President Production, will serve as co-producer.
McGregor took over the role of Obi-Wan for the Star Wars prequel trilogy two decades ago from the late Alec Guinness. His last live-action appearance was in 2005’s Revenge of the Sith. However, McGregor also lent his voice to Rey’s Force vision in The Force Awakens. Additionally, McGregor hasn’t been shy about his desire to reprise his role.
Two years ago, director Stephen Daldry was supposedly lined up to direct a standalone Obi-Wan film. Unfortunately, the dismal box office performance of Solo: A Star Wars Story put all the spinoff movies on hold.
No other details about the potential Obi-Wan series are currently available. A few Star Wars novels and comics have explored Obi-Wan’s life on Tatooine between Episodes III and IV. Obi-Wan also had a memorable rematch with Darth Maul in Star Wars Rebels. But any story direction for the new show is simply conjecture at this point.