Star Wars: Obi-Wan Kenobi Standalone Movie - Story Ideas
There will be several contradictions in this first paragraph, but let me explain. I’ll start by saying that I am always in the bag for any Star Wars Story. Having said that, Lucasfilm is playing it too safe; they have such a rich universe to explore, and everything they have done has spanned only about 60 years or so. They seem to be scared to do anything before The Phantom Menace. A Knights of the Old Republic era saga of movies (or even a television series) is rich for storytelling. Let’s see some new characters and stories very far away from the Skywalkers and everything surrounding them. However, the one existing character that was an absolute no-brainer to have a standalone movie for is Obi-Wan Kenobi. Read on to see my thoughts on what a Kenobi movie could, and should, be.
The obvious way to go would have been a resurrected Maul to face off against Kenobi. Spoiler alert: That already happened in the official Star Wars canon. Maul was resurrected for The Clone Wars TV show and his arc was complete in Star Wars: Rebels when he did indeed seek out Obi-Wan and fell to his hand once more. So that is out of the question, unless they decide to rehash it in live action, but I doubt it.
The story needs to have two things. Firstly, it needs to put Obi-Wan on a personal journey. How we saw him at the end of Revenge of the Sith is much different than how we see him at the beginning of A New Hope. Something has to bring him from the broken, beaten Jedi to the calm cool and collected wizard. The other thing is that the threat needs to involve Luke’s safety. The whole point of his exile on Tatooine is to watch over Luke and protect him. He wouldn’t leave unless it was to benefit Luke. This should happen from afar, we should never see Luke, and while Lucasfilm can’t resist a CGI cameo like Leia at the end of Rogue One, they should.
However, that doesn’t mean it can’t involve Owen Lars. Joel Edgerton has said in the past that he would be willing to return to the role. He could help Obi-Wan, knowing what is at stake, and knowing the dark past of Luke’s family. When Owen tells Luke “I don’t think he exists anymore”, I always felt there was more to that line. Owen seemed to be unsure. It would be fitting if when Owen leaves his adventure with Obi-Wan to return to Luke, he thinks he is truly dead, but doesn’t want to admit it to himself because there was more that he thought he could have done.
Another ally could be Ahsoka Tano. Bringing one of the most popular characters in the Star Wars universe to the live-action screen is a no brainer. Her fate was left up in the air from the last time we saw her in Star Wars: Rebels, and if she had been living in hiding too, she could be trying to find Obi-Wan. Or, bring it to a point where they have already made contact and she recruits him or he recruits her for help with whatever the threat is.
As for the threat, it could be bounty hunters, but what the motivation be for Luke to be in danger from them? A boy on a moisture farm has nothing of value and doesn’t make enough of splash to be wanted by someone who would hire a bounty hunter. The Hutts are nice choice, but they would have to threaten Luke indirectly. It would be interesting if the Hutts decided they wanted to rule Tatooine with Krayt Dragons. Having those beasts roaming around would not be good for moisture farmers trying not to get involved. If the movie is Obi-Wan (and Ahsoka) vs Dragons then they already have my money.
But it could be any number of things. It could even be Vader’s goons secretly trying to wipe out Owen and Beru (not knowing about Luke of course) to completely obliterate anybody who could lead Vader back to Anakin Skywalker. At this point, as far as Vader knows, they are the last link to his former identity. So Obi-Wan could do battle with them, while having to conceal/intercept word of himself (and hopefully Ahsoka) getting back to the Vader or the Emperor.
If done correctly, I can see this being a Logan-esque journey for Obi-Wan, with less finality of course, as that comes later. The stakes don’t have to be universe ending. It doesn’t have to be the imminent threat of annihilation. It just has to be an imminent threat to his world. A personal story that could fundamentally impact him is what is needed.
Lucasfilm will always put Easter eggs, connections, and references that will reframe things in other movies. It is just the nature of the beast whether we like it or not. While I do hope they avoid showing Luke, there are some things they can do that would be great. The biggest one of those would be seeing Qui-Gon Jinn as a force ghost. Obi-Wan getting guidance from his old master would work great, especially to reiterate the belief that Luke is the Chosen One now that Anakin was proved not to be. This next one is a stretch, and may be convoluted, but it is a theory I've seen floating around, and I’d like to see it. I had always wondered where Luke got his green kyber crystal for his new lightsaber in Return of the Jedi. I would assume kyber crystals are hard to find by that time, since the Empire would have most of them, so it would make sense to me that he found Qui-Gon’s old lightsaber in Obi-Wan’s house and used that. There is a deleted scene of him completing his lightsaber on Tatooine before he sends R2-D2 off to Jabba’s Palace, so maybe he had to travel there to get the final piece. It would also be fitting that the crystal of the man who had so much faith in young Anakin Skywalker was used to bring him back to the light.
The real work is taking these ideas and making them into a coherent and fun film. I do believe that some of this is important to make the film work, as it is the essential to maintaining the essence of the character. The new Lucasfilm regime has yet to disappoint me, so I have faith that the force will guide them down the correct path.
What do you think? What should they do for an Obi-Wan Kenobi standalone film? Are you excited for the potential? Or are you indifferent about it?