Had Solo: A Star Wars Story not underwhelmed at the box office, we may well have ended up watching "Obi-Wan Kenobi: A Star Wars Story" in theaters this year. While we can't find fault with the six-part series that debuted on Disney+, it's always fun to think about what might have been, and the project's original writer, Stuart Beattie, has now shed more light on that.
Talking to The Direct, he explains how Darth Vader's line in Return of the Jedi about Obi-Wan also once believing that there was still good in the Sith Lord led to him convincing Lucasfilm that the villain should appear in the movie.
Beattie also felt it was important to better explain why people would believe Vader had killed Anakin and was looking to address a perceived plot hole in A New Hope. "In mine, he really did believe that Kenobi was dead at the end, which was the thing that allowed him to finally let Kenobi go and focus on ruling the galaxy with an iron fist," the writer says. "Because it always seemed that in [A New Hope] he was shocked when he was like 'I sense something, a presence I've not felt since...' Why do you stop talking to yourself? It's because you're that shocked, you know?"
"So I always felt that that was a moment when he suddenly realized, 'Oh, my God, he's alive.' I mean, in the next scene, he's talking to Tarkin and Tarkin's like, 'What? No, he's dead. He's got to be dead,'" Beattie continues. "So I felt that was justified and really the only way that Vader would have stopped hunting Kenobi is that he believed Kenobi was dead."
For Vader to believe he had killed Obi-Wan, the Jedi Master had to lose their lightsaber duel. In this version of the story, the clash would have taken place on a space station, with the villain believing he had finally bested his old Master.
"It was falling apart in the atmosphere of this big planet and Obi-Wan basically fell off. Vader pushed him off and they separated. They didn't get the chance to find Obi-Wan," he explains. "To me, if Obi-Wan has a chance to kill Darth Vader, he would do it. How many countless lives would you save, especially knowing that Vader would be hunting other Jedi, which was established in the show."
Some fans have indeed wondered why Obi-Wan would leave Vader alive at the end of their clash, and while his true face was still going to be shown (with a similar exchange about Vader killing Anakin), the outcome was very different. Beattie would even go on to say that the Jedi hoped turning Anakin back to the Light would mean they could destroy Emperor Palpatine together, but with that clearly off the table, Ben instead focused on training Luke Skywalker.
What do you think about this potential alternate ending to Obi-Wan Kenobi?