‘Star Wars’: Hayden Christensen Admits the 1 Way He’s Exactly Like Anakin Skywalker

Even before Lucasfilm announced the cast of the upcoming Obi-Wan Kenobi series, fans hoped for more Hayden Christensen. The actor played Anakin Skywalker aka Darth Vader in two-thirds of the Star Wars prequel trilogy. While his story on Obi-Wan Kenobi is unclear, Christensen once admitted he has a key characteristic in common with his iconic Star Wars character.

Hayden Christensen takes over Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run during a visit to Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at Disneyland Park in Anaheim, Calif.
Hayden Christensen takes over Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run during a visit to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland Park in Anaheim, Calif. | Richard Harbaugh/Disneyland Resort via Getty Images

Hayden Christensen’s Anakin Skywalker is divisive among fans

The Star Wars prequels — released from 1999 to 2005 — are some of the most divisive blockbusters in recent memory. Much of the credit (or blame, depending how one feels) belongs to creator George Lucas, of course. But several cast members felt the stinging ire of fans even during the movies’ initial run.

Jake Lloyd and Ahmed Best probably got hit the hardest for their roles as nine-year-old Anakin and Jar Jar Binks. But Christensen is easily in the same camp. His two-film appearance in the saga as Anakin is among the most berated in the Star Wars saga. This is especially true since Christensen is the actor who takes Anakin fully down the path to becoming Darth Vader.

But time has softened some fans on Christensen’s performance. After all, an entire generation of kids has grown up with the prequels. So though critics and fans were initially harsh, the Star Wars community has largely embraced Christensen as an indispensable part of the saga’s history. Likewise, Christensen cherishes the experience of working on the movies.

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Hayden Christensen revealed how he’s like his ‘Star Wars’ character

Even Ewan McGregor can’t believe how some fans revere the Star Wars prequel trilogy. Whenever fans call out how much they dislike the prequels, one of the most oft-cited sequences is Anakin’s rant about sand. But as Christensen revealed at Star Wars Celebration in 2017, he actually agrees with his character when it comes to his most famous complaint.

“[Sand is] not very smooth. It doesn’t really stay in one place. So I’m not such a big fan of it myself. Although, if it leads to the water, I can tolerate it. But Anakin came from a desert planet. So I understood his contempt for it.”

It’s satisfying to hear Christensen connect with Anakin’s distaste for sand. Moreover, it underlines a major theme in Star Wars, that of perspective. As Obi-Wan (Alec Guinness) famously says in Return of the Jedi, “many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.” For Anakin, his upbringing on Tatooine shaped his lens on the galaxy and his destiny.

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Hayden Christensen returns on the ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ Disney+ show

After years of rumors, McGregor will finally return as the titular character on the upcoming Obi-Wan Kenobi show. And as some fans hoped, he will indeed reunite with Christensen. However, given Anakin’s fiery fate in Revenge of the Sith, Christensen’s involvement remains a mystery. Naturally, fans are hoping to see some Clone Wars era flashbacks with the two Jedi.

More than likely, the actor will wear prosthetics to play the unmasked Vader. Perhaps the Sith Lord will be hunting for his former master. Given A New Hope, it’s possible the two may only communicate through the Force and not come face to face. After decades as one of Star Wars‘ most notorious cast members, Christensen’s redemption — much like Anakin’s — is at hand.