Favreau and Filoni Cut ALL of Ray Park’s Darth Maul Return in ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’

in Star Wars

Ray Park as Darth Maul

Credit: Lucasfilm

Every Star Wars fans’ worst nightmare just came true with Obi-Wan Kenobi and the possibility of a fan-favorite villain reappearing in this limited series.

Ewan McGregor as Obi-Wan Kenobi
Credit: Lucasfilm

Related: Dave Filoni Fought Disney to Bring Hayden Christensen Back as Darth Vader

In just two months, Ewan McGregor and Hayden Christensen are returning to the Star Wars universe, reprising their iconic Star Wars characters in the Obi-Wan Kenobi limited series. The new Star Wars story begins ten years after the dramatic events of Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005).

McGregor first appeared as the titular character in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace (1999) and Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones (2002) — taking the role from icon Alec Guinness after his appearances in Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (1977) and the original trilogy.

Hayden Christensen Obi-Wan Kenobi Series
Credit: Lucasfilm

Related: Bryce Dallas Howard Reportedly Returning to ‘The Mandalorian’ Ahead Fan Movement

An exclusive Obi-Wan Kenobi article from The Hollywood Reporter confirms the worst for Star Wars fans: Ray Park’s Darth Maul has been cut from the streaming series:

Sources note that Filoni and Favreau were concerned about Obi-Wan covering similar ground as Mandalorian — the Lone Wolf and Cub-like story of Kenobi coming out of hiding to protect a child-aged Luke Skywalker. Maul was one of the villains who would participate in the hunt for the pair; Vader was nowhere to be found in this faraway galaxy at this stage, according to those with knowledge of the project. Also, Filoni and Favreau pushed Chow and the show to “go bigger,” according to several sources. In any case, those concerns made their way to Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy, who pressed the pause button.

… Not only was the Sith Lord initially slated to return to the live-action Disney+ series as a key villain, actor Ray Park was in active prep to reprise Maul.

darth maul phantom menace
Credit: Lucasfilm

Related: The Spin that Ruined ‘Star Wars’: Fans “Cringe” At ‘Book of Boba Fett’ Finale

As a result of The Mandalorian showrunner Jon Favreau and executive producer Dave Filoni hitting the pause button on the initial plans to include Darth Maul as Kenobi‘s main villain (in favor of bringing back Hayden Christensen as Darth Vader), Ray Park’s return to Star Wars was scrapped entirely.

THR continues:

It is unclear how far along in the process things initially unraveled. A boy was chosen to play young Skywalker, but no scenes with him were shot. As far as Park’s Maul goes, the picture is more cloudy. One source says Park was on set for preproduction and was also involved in stunt training. The source says footage of Park may have been shot, although another source says it could have been test footage. Whatever the case, Park was back as Maul, or so he believed.

qui-gon jinn and obi-wan kenobi fighting darth maul with lightsabers
Credit: Lucasfilm

Ray Park reportedly went as far as getting back in makeup and filming various scenes for Kenobi, albeit test scenes.

Nonetheless, Darth Maul was finally back in live-action, but Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni felt that Hayden Christensen’s Darth Vader should be the main antagonist of Obi-Wan Kenobi:

In the overhaul, however, Maul was written out. One source says it was Filoni that conceptually keyed in on a way for Vader to be brought back as the big bad, with the Grand Inquisitor, a character made popular by Filoni in the animated series Star Wars Rebels, also put into the story.

A Lucasfilm source contradicted the account, saying Maul was never intended to return for the series.

darth maul with darth sidious
Credit: Lucasfilm

Related: Ex-‘Mandalorian’ Star Gina Carano Issues Mic Drop on New Disney Controversy

Maul’s absence does open the door for a Kenobi season two, something that Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy recently teased.

More about Obi-Wan Kenobi

The story begins ten years after the dramatic events of “Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith,” where Obi-Wan Kenobi faced his most significant defeat—the downfall and corruption of his best friend and Jedi apprentice, Anakin Skywalker, who turned to the dark side as evil Sith Lord Darth Vader.

Ewan McGregor as Obi-Wan Kenobi
Credit: Lucasfilm

Related: Disney Is Blatantly Avoiding George Lucas’s ‘Star Wars’ Original Trilogy

“The rematch of the century” teased by Kathleen Kennedy, director Deborah Chow, and Lucasfilm will be supported by Moses Ingram (Inquisitor Reva), Joel Edgerton (Uncle Owen), Bonnie Piesse (Beru Lars), Kumail Nanjiani, Indira Varma, Rupert Friend, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Sung Kang, Simone Kessell, and Benny Safdie.

Young Luke Skywalker in 'Obi-Wan Kenobi'
Credit: Lucasfilm

The world of Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher), Han Solo (Harrison Ford), Darth Vader (James Earl Jones), Jedi Master Yoda (Frank Oz), Ahsoka Tano (Ashley Eckstein), Darth Maul (Ray Parker), Anakin Skywalker (Boba Fett (Jeremy Bulloch/Temura Morrison), Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor), Jedi Knight Grogu (AKA “Baby Yoda”), Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff)Koska Reeves (Sasha Banks), Fennec Shand (Ming-Na Wen), and Moff Gideon’s (Giancarlo Esposito)the Millennium Falcon, the Death Star, and the Clone War.

Within the Star Wars franchise, Lucasfilm is moving past Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016) or the controversial Rian Johnson Star Wars film The Last Jedi (2018) as we dive into the Old Republic or explore new realities of the Star Wars universe with each new TV show or the upcoming Star Wars game like Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order 2 or Star Wars Eclipse.

Inquisitor and Stormtroopers on Daiyu in 'Obi-Wan Kenobi'
Credit: Lucasfilm

Obi-Wan Kenobi is directed by Deborah Chow and executive-produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Michelle Rejwan, Deborah Chow, Ewan McGregor, and Joby Harold.

Should Darth Maul have been in Obi-Wan Kenobi? Let us know in the comments below!

Comments Off on Favreau and Filoni Cut ALL of Ray Park’s Darth Maul Return in ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’