Ewan McGregor takes a guess why Star Wars prequels got the kind of hatred they did over the years.
For more than a decade since the Star Wars prequels came out, the movies were subjected to disapproval and ridicule. For sure, they proved to be a gold mine for memes (“I hate sand”, “Hello there”, Jar Jar Binks), but that was about the only thing going for the trilogy. The mass discontent was perpetuated by veteran critics as well.
However, in recent times the movies attained somewhat of a cult status among a certain section of the fandom. Particularly in the wake of fan-favorite Clone Wars revival and Disney’s Obi-Wan Kenobi release, the prequels found significant pop culture redemption in the media.
In a panel at the Soho Farmhouse for GQ Heroes 2022, Ewan McGregor put forward a possible reason why the prequel movies faced the fate they did.
"“I think the critics just wanted to feel like they were seven or eight again, and they didn’t get that [with the prequel movies]. So I was left with that [reaction] for years and years, and it took [until I started] meeting people, and I realized how important our films have been to them.”"
What possibly made the difference was the 90s and noughties’ kids – who watched the prequels growing up and loved the movies for what they were – growing up and making their opinions heard.
"“I think [my relationship to the prequels] has changed for me as I’ve met more people in that generation,” McGregor added."
Ewan McGregor also handed it to George Lucas for daring to make the prequels and said it was “ballsy and interesting” of the Star Wars creator to do another three movies that told vastly different stories from the original ones.
The memes stemming from the movies have certainly not died out. In fact, after Obi-Wan Kenobi uncovered new confrontations between the jedi and his old padawan, the internet has managed to come up with even more of those.
However, it seems like the actors love to play along with them. In a recent media interview Hayden Christensen said that he understood Anakin Skywalker’s “contempt for sand” after growing up in a desert planet and doesn’t mind the memes.
Both Ewan McGregor and Hayden Christensen have reprised their roles of Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader in the Obi-Wan Kenobi show.
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