A new behind the scenes photo shared by Twitter user NatePMMA shows Hayden Christensen posing with 501st Clone Troopers. In Obi Wan Kenobi, audiences are given a new look at Order 66, giving a more detailed look of what happened in the Jedi Temple when the Order is activated.
The Prequel trilogy opted to use CGI models for all of the clones, however both The Book of Boba Fett and Obi Wan Kenobi made use of actual armor, and had people in the suits. Some of the people are part of the 501st Legion fan organisation, Star Wars cosplayers. Members also appear in The Mandalorian, as stormtroopers.
While this photo is clearly just for fun, it’s interesting to consider if this is in fact a photo of Darth Vader and his men. Pretending the clones have the face of Temuera Morrison, Vader would have taken the opportunity to revel in his victory over the Jedi, by taking a photo to celebrate this success with his men. Thanks to Star Wars: The Clone Wars, audiences know that Anakin shares a close bond with his men, and this photo illustrates that the bond continued, albeit briefly.
Furthermore, this photo bears a similarity with a fan made photo of another one of Vader’s victories. Below, Vader can once again be seen posing for a photo with the famed 501st, this time celebrating their victory on Hoth. The photo was created by Cool Ass Cinema, with fans dressing up as Vader, Snowtroopers and Imperial Generals. The comments reveal this photo was taken in Norway, to evoking the snowy mountains of Hoth. Again, while this is clearly just for fun, this photo could have similar lore implications.
In the Star Wars universe, the photo could have been taken for similar reasons that Vader would have had the one in Temple taken. Hoth is perhaps the Empire’s greatest victory, so it’s unsurprising that Vader would want this moment captured in a photo. Perhaps he would later share it across the Holonet as a propaganda stunt, showing that he and his troops can crush any forces that dare oppose them. The Rebel Alliance did manage to escape, showing they truly won by living to fight another day, but the Empire would want to spin the attack on Hoth into a victory in anyway way they could, especially after the loss of the Death Star.
Whilst these photos aren’t canon, a behind the scenes look and a fan picture respectively, they both add to the universe in interesting ways, adding to Vader’s character by showing that he likes to rub his victory in the faces of his opponents. Many fans will surely include these photos as part of their own headcanon, acknowledging the fun they bring with them.