Ewan McGregor Confirmed to Return as Obi-Wan Kenobi for Disney+ Series
The Star Wars franchise hasn't seen the last of Obi-Wan Kenobi. On Thursday, Deadline confirmed that Ewan McGregor is set to reprise his role in a currently-untitled series for the Disney+ streaming service. The Hollywood Reporter's Borys Kit reports that the series could span six or eight episodes. Fans had already begun to speculate that McGregor would be returning to the franchise, after a report from Cinelinx claimed he had signed a contract to do so.
This comes after years of rumors and speculation have hinted at Lucasfilm further exploring Obi-Wan's story in some form or fashion. An Obi-Wan movie was believed to be put into development in May of 2018, with Stephen Daldry being brought on to potentially direct. Months later, McGregor himself squashed that reporting, hinting that there were "no plans" for it to happen at that time.
"I would totally do it, of course," the actor shared in a television appearance in August of 2018. "There's no plans as such to do it, as far as I know... There must be a good story to tell as they're doing spin-offs – there's likely to be a good Obi-Wan between me and Alec Guinness."
This new Obi-Wan series would be the third Star Wars project to be officially made for Disney+, which is set to launch on November 12th. The franchise's first live-action television series, The Mandalorian, will be premiere with Disney+'s launch. The Mandalorian is showrun by Jon Favreau, with a cast that includes Pedro Pascal, Gina Carano, and Carl Weathers. A second series, which would be a prequel for Rogue One's Cassian Andor (Diego Luna) and K-2SO (Alan Tudyk), is also in the works. Stephen Schiff will serve as that series' showrunner.
While some have clamored for a film spinoff of Obi-Wan's adventures, it sounds like a Disney+ series could explore that part of the Star Wars canon in a new way.
"Almost every movie the studio makes is a $100 million-plus movie, and we're not looking to make movies at that level for the service," Disney CEO Bob Iger said this past January. "We're looking to invest significantly in television series on a per-episode business, and we're looking to make movies that are higher-budget, but nothing like that."
"We wouldn't make a Star Wars movie for this platform," Iger continued. "When everybody goes out on the weekend and you have a movie that opens up to $200 million, there's a buzz that creates that enhances value. We like that. And eventually, the movies we're making are going to [end up on] the service."
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