40 years ago this May, Star Wars was officially born. A New Hope - as it is now called - kicked off what has now become one of the premier cinematic franchises of all-time. Thanks to its ability to recapture the interest of various generations, Star Wars has continued to stay relevant after all this time, and through it all the fan base has only continued to grow in numbers and passion. For a franchise that has brought so many iconic cinema moments and characters into the fold, it is easy to see why this continues to happen.
To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the beginning of the galaxy far, far away, Lucasfilm and Disney will be holding a special panel at Star Wars Celebration in Orlando this April. The idea behind the panel is to bring together people involved on various levels from all the different movies, and now it has been confirmed that Hayden Christensen will be there as well.
The official Star Wars Celebration Twitter account revealed this detail by having his face and name shown in a picture that teased a number of his fellow panelists. This is a somewhat surprising addition to the panel as Christensen and Lucasfilm have stayed away from each other for the most part. However, with seemingly everybody making an appearance, it will possibly be a once in a lifetime experience for those in attendance to see him with characters from the different trilogies.
That said, there have been persistent rumors that Christensen could be making an appearance in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. These rumors are a few years old at this point, but if Disney has planned for him to be reincorporated into the universe, trying to repair his image with fans by having him stand next to Mark Hamill, Daisy Ridley, Ewan McGregor, and who knows who else could help do just that.
For a lot of fans, Christensen is one of their least favorite parts of the prequel trilogy, but a good portion of this backlash could also be directed at George Lucas' dialogue, directing style, and massive reliance on CGI. He has since gone on to show his acting ability in smaller films, and even gained awards recognition in Life as a House - which ironically came just as he started playing Anakin. The prospect of him returning may make some uneasy, but with Rian Johnson being the one directing him in a hypothetical Last Jedi cameo, maybe the problems with his previous performances can be more easily forgiven.
Even if this is not part of a larger scheme that prepares fans for him to appear down the road, Christensen did still play a large role in this universe and would've been noticeably absent from the 40th anniversary panel otherwise.
Source: Star Wars Celebration
- Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018