Disney+ found success with 2019's The Mandalorian, the first true-blue original series to debut on the nascent streaming service. Given the possibilities allowed by the Star Wars universe to expand into new corners of the galaxy as well as explored previously unknown time periods during the Skywalker saga, it should come as no surprise that Disney+ and Lucasfilm are in the process of creating a limited series spinoff about beloved Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi with Ewan McGregor set to reprise his prequel trilogy version of the character.
It’s been a long time since McGregor played Kenobi, but now that the cat’s out of the bag, the actor opened up to Men’s Journal about the Disney+ series — which has apparently been in the works for quite a while. Remember back when McGregor was tired of all the Obi-Wan spinoff questions? Oh, how the times have changed. He described finally being able to discuss the show as a “massive relief” because “for four years, I’ve been having to lie to people about it.”
While details remain scarce at this point, we’ve compiled everything we know so far about the Obi-Wan Kenobi Disney+ series below, including release date, plot details, cast information and more.
What is the title of the Obi-Wan Kenobi Disney+ series?
No official title has been announced yet. A commonly used working title is Obi-Wan, which has popped up in publications across the internet as well as official statements from Lucasfilm.
What is the Obi-Wan release date?
The Obi-Wan Disney+ series has yet to receive an official release date. Production was set to begin on Obi-Wan in Summer 2020 but it could pick up in January 2021. With production on hold, the entire schedule for Obi-Wan, including the filming start date and release date, will have to be re-assessed. If things can get back on track for Obi-Wan in 2020, it's possible the new Star Wars series could be released in late 2021 or early 2022.
Why is production for Obi-Wan delayed?
Collider reported exclusively in late January that production on Obi-Wan had been put on hold (Collider's report was later backed up by The Hollywood Reporter). According to two independent sources who spoke to Collider, the crew assembled at Pinewood Studios in London was sent home indefinitely in January. It was also reported that Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy was not happy with the scripts being turned in by screenwriter Hossein Amini. Amini has reportedly been let go from Obi-Wan and the series is still in search of a new screenwriter to re-work the story. In THR's report, a source shared the Obi-Wan scripts "treaded similar ground as The Mandalorian, seeing the Jedi master lending a protective hand to a young Luke and perhaps even a young Leia."
"It’s not been put on hold, it’s just been pushed back a little bit. The scripts are excellent and they just want them to be better. So we just pushed it back, but it’s not — it very dramatic, it would seem, online, there’s all kinds of shit online about it, but it’s only just slid back a bit. We’re still shooting it, I think it will still be aired when it was meant to be and I’m really excited about it. It’ll be fun to play again."
He also elaborated on these sentiments while speaking with IGN and teased a new filming start date:
"Now that Episode IX [Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker] came out and everyone at Lucasfilm has got more time to spend on the writing, they felt they wanted more time to write the episodes. I’ve read about 80, 90 percent of what they’ve written so far, and it’s really, really good. Instead of shooting this August, they just want to start shooting in January, that’s all. Nothing more dramatic than that."
Who is in the Obi-Wan cast?
So far, Ewan McGregor is the only cast member confirmed for the Obi-Wan series. There will probably be no new casting announcements with production on Obi-Wan is on hold until Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy gives the thumbs up to the new scripts.
How many episodes will Obi-Wan have?
Until the new scripts arrive and production moves forward, we still don't know about the Obi-Wan episode order. It's very possible the series will take a page out of The Mandalorian's playbook and serve up eight episodes which each run approximately 30 minutes.
Is there a trailer for Obi-Wan ?
There is no trailer for Obi-Wan because, well, the proverbial production train for Obi-Wan has yet to leave the station. Once filming gets underway and we get closer to the scheduled release date (when it's confirmed), we'll see a trailer. In the meantime, Disney+ has tons of Star Wars movies and TV shows you can content yourself with, including the Skywalker saga prequel trilogy starring McGregor as Obi-Wan Kenobi.
What is the plot of Obi-Wan?
We don’t know for sure, but given the timeline of the series, it could very well involve the exploration of Obi-Wan’s mental and emotional state in the wake of his uncertain future and the defeat of Jedi Order.
If you recall, Revenge of the Sith took place in the midst of the Clone Wars and Obi-Wan and Anakin Skywalker were on a mission to rescue then Supreme Chancellor Palpatine. The film ends with Obi-Wan being disappointed in Anakin for turning to the Dark side before delivering Luke to his step-uncle’s home on Tatooine.
McGregor provided some breadcrumbs about Kenobi’s state of mind, but it wasn’t much. “It will be interesting to take a character we know in a way and show him—Well, his arc will be quite interesting, I think, dealing with that the fact that all the Jedi were slaughtered with the end of Episode III. It’s quite something to get over.”
The limited series has a lot of wiggle room to explore what happened to the Jedi master before we meet him in A New Hope. Beyond that, McGregor made it clear he wasn’t “allowed to tell” anything else about the show.
When does the Obi-Wan series take place?
According to McGregor, the “storyline sits between Episode III and Episode IV.” Well, that’s a huge 30-year time period. Since the actor hasn’t played Obi-Wan in more than 15 years, will Disney have to de-age him? McGregor was 33 at the time of Revenge of the Sith, and he’s 48 now.
However, McGregor says he’s actually more intrigued to play an older Obi-Wan anyway. “I want to get closer and closer to how Obi-Wan felt while Alec Guinness was playing him. I feel like I’m grayer and nearer him in age, so it’ll be easier to do that,” McGregor told Men’s Journal.
This implies the series might be closer chronologically to Episode IV than Episode III, but speculation is all we’ve got for now.