The Obi-Wan Kenobi series was put on hold because the scripts were trash

Sundance Film Festival 2020 - Miss Americana World Premiere

During the promotion for The Rise of Skywalker, I vented a bit about how half-assed the Star Wars franchise (and SW-adjacent franchises) seemed under Kathleen Kennedy. When Disney bought LucasFilm, they put Kennedy in charge and I hate to blame all of this sh-t on a lady, but g–damn, she doesn’t know what she’s doing. She hands off billion-dollar properties to inexperienced bros or dudes who have an idea for how to start a story but not end a story. She’s overseen the complete oversaturation of the market for all things Star Wars. She’s wasted tens of millions of dollars on sh-t that could have been dealt with in pre-production, or even in the script-writing phase. And on and on.

So… after The Rise of Skywalker, there was a promise from Disney that they were going to take a “break” from the SW franchise and all of the spinoffs. The exceptions being The Mandolorian on Disney+ and whatever they’ve been talking to Taika Waititi about. The other exception? A Disney+ series about Obi-Wan Kenobi, starring Ewan McGregor. The series was supposed to start filming in a matter of weeks. But preproduction was just halted.

Disney+ and Lucasfilm’s Star Wars series centered on Obi-Wan Kenobi has been put on hold as the companies attempt a retooling, multiple sources tell The Hollywood Reporter. The effort, in which Ewan McGregor is set to reprise his role of the famed Jedi Knight, was in the throes of preproduction. The project had Hossein Amini writing and a director in Deborah Chow, who became the first-ever female Star Wars director thanks to her work on Disney+’s buzzy series The Mandalorian. Sources say that the show was even screen-testing actors opposite McGregor.

Sources tell THR that the scripts — only two were written — and story became an issue and that the entire package has been jettisoned. Lucasfilm is now on the hunt for a new writer to pen the series. At the same time, sources say the project is being reconfigured from six episodes to four. It is unclear when the show will ramp up again, although insiders stress that McGregor remains attached to star and Chow remains on as director. Disney had no comment.

The development follows social media rumors a week ago that the series was cancelled. Those posts proved premature, but did expose the project was facing problems. It is unclear why scripts became an issue so late in the process. One source said the Kenobi story trod similar ground as The Mandalorian, seeing the Jedi master lending a protective hand to a young Luke and possible even a young Leia, perhaps mirroring how the Mandalorian took Baby Yoda under his protective custody.

The Obi-Wan news comes as Disney and Lucasfilm are at a crossroads with Star Wars. The franchise has been put on pause, at least in terms of the big screen, following December’s Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, which concluded the nine-film saga that began in 1977 and was greeted with mixed reaction. Though the pic has earned $1.03 billion globally to date, it is on track to be the lowest-grossing of the sequel trilogy.

[From THR]

I mean… the good news is that people realized that the scripts were a f–king mess BEFORE production began, so that’s something? On other SW projects, Kennedy would have barged ahead, thrown good money after bad and put on a bow on a sub-par project, knowing that it would be a massive success no matter what. But I also wonder if the scripts were just especially terrible, you know? It feels like this wouldn’t have been done unless everything was a catastrophe.

Actor Ewan McGregor arrives at the Los Angeles Premiere Of Warner Bros. Pictures' 'Doctor Sleep' held at the Westwood Regency Theater on October 29, 2019 in Westwood, Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by David Acosta/Image Press Agency)

World Premiere Of Disney's 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker'

Photos courtesy of LucasFilm and WENN.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

9 Responses to “The Obi-Wan Kenobi series was put on hold because the scripts were trash”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. cheryl says:

    I SWEAR, if these people screw up Obi-Wan, there will be hell to pay.

  2. Mireille says:

    I just saw the Rise of Skywalker. Please for the love of all that’s left good in the Force, stop with the ruination of the Star Wars series. Please. Just. Stop.

  3. Veronica S. says:

    Honestly, the series concept as a whole makes me leery because….Obi Wan is canonically on Tatooine keeping an eye on Luke growing up, while Bail Organa is taking care of Leia. What could he possibly be doing that is so interesting? Where’s the conflict beyond a deeply cerebral one that’s kind of outside of the typical SW wheelhouse? You’d have to take him off planet to be interesting, but that would come across as incredibly dangerous story-wise (the Empire is hunting Jedi down left and right to exterminate them at that point) and it would leave Luke unsupervised and risk him being found. That really stretches the limits of movie canon.

    I love Ewan McGregor, but the guy gave one of the best performances of the prequels despite the writing issues they had, so it’d be a waste of his talent to hand him garbage.

    • dogmom says:

      Amen on Ewan McGregor’s prequel performance. I re-watched the original trilogy and the prequels before seeing Rise of Skywalker, and I came away from the prequels marveling at what a great job he did despite the terrible writing and the performances of his costars giving him nothing to work with. I’m not saying I’d hand him an Oscar or anything, but nobody else was able to overcome/elevate that material.

  4. Mia4s says:

    Yeah better now than re-filming the whole thing like they did with that Solo movie. They paused the Rogue One prequel series with Diego Luna too, but apparently that’s ready to go…so far…today anyway.

    I don’t know, I adore the Mandalorian but the Kenobi series just doesn’t excite me. At least the Rogue One prequel series can go anywhere, I’ve seen Tatooine and old hermit Jedi. 🤷‍♀️

  5. Livvers says:

    The entire Star Wars universe was created by Lucas to reflect Jungian archetypes, and I’m sorry, but despite Joseph Campbell being able to talk for hours about these archetypes, there’s only so much “story “to go around when that’s all you bring to the keyboard. I’m not surprised they are discovering it’s repetitive – Disney should have been aware of and had a plan to expand, not just beyond the trilogy into TV, but a plan to map out completely new approaches to narrative and storytelling too.

  6. Su says:

    I may be committing blasphemy but they should hand over SW to Jon Favreau. He’s a super fan and kick started Marvel’s rise to dominance. He’s instrumental with The Mandalorian.

    Disney needs to delve deep into the books and graphic novels. All of the info they need is there.

    • CuriousCole says:

      Yes, I love your suggestion, Su! Jon would do an admirable job and would do justice to the existing canon.