After making a voice-only cameo as a Force Spirit in The Rise of Skywalker and formally portraying Darth Vader in the Disney Plus series Obi-Wan Kenobi, Hayden Christensen is continuing his Star Wars renaissance with a return as Anakin Skywalker in the Ahsoka series starring Rosario Dawson.
The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed with multiple sources that Hayden Christensen will be appearing in the Disney Plus series, spinning off of the events of the Star Wars shows The Clone Wars, Rebels, and The Mandalorian. It is not known what the size of Christensen’s role will be in Ahsoka, but given the time-frame of it being set years after the events of Return of the Jedi, it is likely that he will be appearing as a Force Spirit to advise Ahsoka, although it’s possible that there may be flashback sequences to events prior to Anakin’s death. Disney and Lucasfilm did not comment on the report.
Ahsoka Tano was first introduced to audiences via The Clone Wars, as Anakin’s then-unrevealed Padawan apprentice. Over the course of her story, she voluntarily left the Jedi Order after being accused of treachery by the Jedi Order – even though she was acquitted, the Jedi Council’s lack of support for her made her realize that she couldn’t continue working with them. This event ultimately proved to be her salvation, as she would end up surviving Order 66, though it would further Anakin’s distrust of the Jedi and help facilitate his fall to the Dark Side. Years later, during the events of Rebels, Darth Vader would encounter his apprentice in a duel to the death on the dead Sith world of Malachor, but thanks to an otherworldly intervention from Ezra Bridger, Ahsoka’s life was saved. Ahsoka promised to help find Ezra, recruiting his friend Sabine Wren in search of the whereabouts of Grand Admiral Thrawn, who Ezra was last seen going into hyperspace with.
Rosario Dawson’s debut as Ahsoka in The Mandalorian is set some time before the epilogue sequence of the series finale of Rebels, and featured her asking about Thrawn’s location from the villain of the week. The story is likely to pick up from there, since it has long been rumored that the story of the Ahsoka series will involve her search for Ezra, potentially with various The Clone Wars and Rebels characters joining her in the jump from animation to live-action. Given the time period, it would also be unsurprising to see a further exploration of narrative events touched upon in previous points in the timeline, although there’s currently no proof that a younger actress is being hired to play Ahsoka for events set before The Mandalorian. Should that be the case, then Hayden Christensen could play a substantial role in the entire series, beyond just dispensing advice and reconciling with his student.
In an interesting bit of trivia, the show also reunites actors Hayden Christensen and Rosario Dawson in a project, as the two were part of the same acting class at the Lee Strasberg Institute and worked together on the film Shattered Glass. Talking to Vanity Fair, Dawson claimed that her and Christensen’s real-life connection is one of the reasons why she was cast in the role. Production on the series is set to begin in early 2022, making a 2023 release most likely – though a very late 2022 release could be on the table if work on the series moves forward fast enough.
Ahsoka is in development for Disney Plus. Lucasfilm’s slate of other Star Wars projects includes the likes of The Book of Boba Fett, Andor, Obi-Wan Kenobi, The Acolyte, Lando, A Droid Story, Rangers of the New Republic, and The Mandalorian, which is preparing a third season, along with The Bad Batch, which is preparing a second season.