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Is Darth Maul in Obi-Wan? Star Wars canon reveals the answer

Rumors are flying that Darth Maul was cut from an early version of Obi-Wan Kenobi.

Darth Maul is confused

Darth Maul lives! Well, sort of. After Obi-Wan Kenobi famously cut the horned Sith Lord in half in The Phantom Menace, Maul resurfaced in The Clone Wars, became a crime lord by the time of Solo, and eventually was murdered by Obi-Wan (again!) in Rebels. But, recently, big rumors suggest Maul was going to hassle Old Ben in between all of that during the upcoming TV series Obi-Wan Kenobi.

Here’s why Maul appearing in Obi-Wan Kenobi would have created a big canon problem.

He’s back! Oh wait, never mind.


Was Darth Maul cut from Obi-Wan?

According to The Hollywood Reporter, some sources have claimed that an early version of the upcoming series Obi-Wan Kenobi would have featured Darth Maul as the “key villain.” They also said actor Ray Park was even on set, prepping to appear in the show. But Lucasfilm reps, including Pablo Hidalgo, have called “bullshit” on this rumor. Even the story for The Hollywood Reporter was updated after it was published to reflect a denial from Lucasfilm, stating, “Ray Park did not come to the set of Obi-Wan Kenobi.”

Even amid these denials, the basic rumor — that Obi-Wan could have featured Darth Maul — has some theoretical merit. At this point in the Star Wars timeline, Maul is active as a crime lord. And if a rumored Han Solo cameo happens to be accurate, it stands to reason that Maul could have appeared in this series as long as he was never face-to-face with Kenobi.

So was Darth Maul actually “cut” from the series during the creative changeover between writers Hossein Amini and Joby Harold? The official answer sounds like Lucasfilm never planned for Maul to be in the show, but there’s another good reason to think his appearance wasn’t going to happen.

Obi-Wan takes down Darth Maul in Rebels.


Darth Maul didn’t know about Luke Skywalker

In the Rebels episode, “Twin Suns,” Maul comes to Tatooine about two years before the events of A New Hope. Obi-Wan faces him for the last time and murders him almost right away. Maul then falls dead in the arms of Kenobi, who tells him Luke is the “Chosen One” and there’s hope that everything will be evened out in the future. Maul asks if Kenobi is protecting the Chosen One, which seriously implies Maul doesn’t know what Kenobi is doing on Tatooine.

“Twin Suns” is canon. And throughout Rebels, two things are made pretty clear:

  1. Maul didn’t know where Obi-Wan was hiding.
  2. Maul didn’t know about Luke Skywalker.

The Hollywood Reporter rumor seems connected to the notion that early scripts for Obi-Wan Kenobi would have seen Maul pursuing both Obi-Wan and 10-year-old Luke. There’s almost no way this idea could work in established canon at all. Unless Maul was chasing Luke and Obi-Wan on a planet that wasn’t Tatooine, and Luke was wearing some kind of disguise, this concept just doesn’t work.

Rebels and Clone Wars producer Dave Filoni is closely connected to the development of the live-action Star Wars shows. If any story idea fixated on the idea of Maul meeting Kenobi before “Twin Suns,” or Maul getting wind of Luke’s existence, it feels like Filoni would have shot it down. This isn’t to say that somebody thought of bringing Maul to the Obi-Wan series at some point. It just seems that if Maul did appear, he’d never share the screen with Old Ben.

Could Maul and Kenobi have been like starships passing in the night? We’ll probably never know, but if you search your feelings, it seems like the Force is saying very clearly: nope.

Obi-Wan Kenobi hits Disney+ on May 25.

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