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Everything we know so far about the Obi-Wan Kenobi spinoff movie

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Although the new Star Wars trilogy is poised to wrap up with next year's Episode 9, a multitude of spinoffs is incoming. Last week saw the release of SOLO: A Star Wars Story, introducing us to Alden Ehrenreich as the younger Han Solo, and a Boba Fett movie is also set to be on the cards.

Then there's the case of the long-gestating Obi-Wan Kenobi spinoff. Played by Alec Guinness in the original Star Wars trilogy and Ewan McGregor in the prequels, Jedi master Kenobi has, in the eyes of many fans, been long overdue for his own film.

Rumour has it, however, that the wait may soon be over. Here's what we know about the planned Obi-Wan movie...

It will focus on the most famous Jedi master of them all

Well, if you remove Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) from the equation, that is. Chronologically speaking, Obi-Wan was first introduced in The Phantom Menace (1999), the first of the Star Wars prequel trilogy that took place before the events of the originals. McGregor's action-oriented take on the character was responsible for the mentoring of the young Anakin Skywalker, later to transform into feared villain Darth Vader.

Moving ahead, A New Hope (released in 1977) picks up with Obi-Wan as an older, wiser figure who takes it upon himself to train the young Luke, son of Anakin. Killed in combat by Vader, he later appeared as a Force ghost in Return of the Jedi.


It (may) be helmed by an Oscar-nominated director

Starting in August 2017, rumours began to fly that Billy Elliot and The Hours filmmaker Stephen Daldry was attached to a potential Obi-Wan movie. Speculation was further ignited by an article in The Hollywood Reporter claiming at the time that talks were underway, although no script was evident.

Daldry has coaxed memorable performances out of his actors, including Jamie Bell's eponymous ballet dancer in Billy Elliot, Oscar winner Nicole Kidman's impressively tortured Virginia Woolf in The Hours and Oscar nominee Kate Winslet's redemptive Nazi officer in The Reader. Surely he's the one to graft more emotional weight to Obi-Wan's journey?

That said, with no script in place, we've no idea what stage of the character's life they're going to focus on.


Ewan McGregor is interested in reprising the role

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly in April 2017, McGregor said: "There’s no official offer, and I haven’t met them about it or anything. But I’ve always said that I’d be happy to do it if they wanted to do it. It would be a good segue between the last episode of the prequels and the new episodes. I think they’ve got films to make until the 2020s, so I don’t think it’s going to happen soon if it happens at all."

This was later followed up by comments after he won a Golden Globe for TV's Fargo: "There’s a lot of talk... I’d be happy to play him again, but I don’t know any more about it than you do. There’s no plan at the moment."

Although that hardly passes as a confirmation, given McGregor described The Last Jedi as "really, really beautiful" and provided a voice cameo as Kenobi for The Force Awakens, he's clearly still in good odour with Lucasfilm. Watch this space.


It could start filming in early 2019

Given that director and star are yet to officially sign on the dotted line, not to mention there's currently no script, we'd be surprised at this. However, in December 2017, website Omega Underground claimed to have unearthed details about a possible start date.

The website claimed to have discovered an update from Pinewood Studios, revealing that Daldry, along with Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy and producer Tracey Seaward, has booked the London film studio (considered one of the homes of Star Wars) for January 2019. Still, we'll take this with a massive pinch of Crait salt for the time being.


The man behind Darth Maul is convinced it'll happen

Obi-Wan's feared nemesis in The Phantom Menace was Sith lord Darth Maul (Ray Park). Although it appeared that our hero sliced him in half and won the battle, canon TV series The Clone Wars confirmed that Maul survived, albeit with no legs. And now a Twitter user claims to have had a conversation with Park at the Comicpalooza event in Texas, in which the actor was confident the Kenobi spinoff would be made. Could we be seeing a possible big-screen continuation of their epic battle?


It may take place on Tatooine

Taking Obi-Wan back to where we first met him in A New Hope would be dramatically interesting, not to mention nostalgically charged. TMZ implies the story is set on Tatooine and picks up with Obi-Wan living in exile and watching over young Luke Skywalker. Tensions between a tribe of sand people and local Tatooine farmers then bring Obi-Wan out of hiding. Again, we'll bring official confirmation as details come in.

If you can't get enough Star Wars spinoff action, click here to book your tickets for SOLO: A Star Wars Story, on release now in Cineworld.