How Sir Alec Guinness (Obi-Wan) Saved Star Wars


As many Star Wars fans know, Sir Alec Guinness — who portrayed the original Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Star Wars Original Trilogy — had a certain dislike for Star Wars itself, but according to a new report, the legendary actor most likely saved the franchise from going under…

According to a new report from The London Times, although Sir Alec Guinness thought Star Wars was a “fantasy world of secondhand, childish banalities,” he more than likely saved George Lucas’ masterpiece from tanking, before it ever had a chance to become one of the most beloved science-fiction sagas in the world.

In a memoir by Star Wars’ set decorator Roger Christian — who helped to invent the lightsaber, and who also created the model for everyone’s favorite and loveable yet feisty astromech droid, R2D2 — it is stated that Sir Alec Guinness’s presence on set, saved the production from utter failure, as a group of senior crew members decided to mutiny against the George Lucas.

H/T – New York Daily News

"“I honestly think he held the production together. Science fiction was at its lowest ebb at the box office. When Alec turned up — always on time, always polite — it gave a credibility to George that he might not have had without someone of Alec’s stature.”"

So there you have it, Sir Alec Guinness, despite not loving the film itself, or the way George Lucas was handling production, remained the consummate professional. It’s amazing to think that the man who once said:

Sir Alec Guinness with director George Lucas on the set of ‘Star Wars’ in 1976. (SUNSET BOULEVARD/CORBIS VIA GETTY IMAGES)

"“New rubbish dialogue reaches me every other day on wadges of pink paper – and none of it makes my character clear or even bearable. I just think, thankfully, of the lovely bread, which will help me keep going until next April.”"

Thank you, Sir Alec Guinness. If not for you, we Star Wars fans would not have the wonderful, exciting, and awe-inspiring storytelling that has sprung from the mind of George Lucas, and those directors that have followed in his footsteps.

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Directors like Dave Filoni with The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels, and of course J.J. Abrams with The Force Awakens, or Rian Johnson and Star Wars: Episode VIII, and Gareth Edwards and Rogue One. And then, of course, we have a myriad of new directors taking on all sorts of Star Wars film projects, and it’s all thanks to the fact that Sir Alec Guinness was a professional at his craft, and a damn fine human being.