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The Real Reason Young Leia Is A Major Part Of Obi-Wan Kenobi

One of the biggest surprises to come out of Disney+'s "Obi-Wan Kenobi" has been the introduction of young Leia Skywalker (Vivien Lyra Blair). The character is just brought in for a cameo, either; she's essential to the plot. Obi-Wan (Ewan McGregor) is pulled out of his self-imposed isolation on Tattoine to find the young girl after she is kidnapped on her home planet of Alderaan. This, of course, brings him face to face with his old Padawan, Anakin Skywalker, now known across the galaxy as the ruthless Darth Vader. In another one of the show's best surprises, prequel trilogy star Hayden Christensen is back to help tell the next chapter in his tragic character's story.

Leia's inclusion was kept tightly under wraps, though it's a surprise to see her occupy such a sizable part in the show's story, especially considering Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy's recent claim that recasting original characters with new actors might be a mistake. While speaking to Vanity Fair, Kennedy alluded to the troubled but oh-so-lovable "Solo: A Star Wars Story." She did, however, thankfully later clarify these comments by saying there is always a future for younger versions of characters like Alden Ehrenreich's Han Solo and Donald Glover's Lando Calrissian in the franchise (per GamesRadar).

It's all a bit confusing in the land of "Star Wars," but we're getting shows like "Obi-Wan Kenobi," so who's complaining? One of the writers for the show has also come forward and explained why young Leia ended playing such a major role in the dark continuation of the prequel trilogy. 

Leia's role in Obi-Wan Kenobi deepens the original trilogy

According to "Obi-Wan Kenobi" writer Joby Harold, the history of Leia and Obi-Wan being shown in the new Disney+ series plays directly into one of the most famous lines from George Lucas' original trilogy. "It answers the question of 'Why him?' So, 'Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi. You're my only hope,' feels less arbitrary as a choice and a decision now that we know the depth of the history they have together. I liked the fact that it helped reinforce and better articulate a little piece of the jigsaw that is already in place. She also ends up naming her son Ben," Harold recently told The Hollywood Reporter

In the series, Obi-Wan has isolated himself, haunted by what he sees as his failing in Anakin turning to the Dark Side rather than fulfilling his promise as the Chosen One. While isolated, Obi-Wan watches over young Luke Skywalker, Anakin's son, as he grows up on his uncle's (Joel Edgerton) moisture farm. Harold explained further that Leia, Luke's twin, would be the only reason strong enough for him to ditch his post and leave Luke without his watchful eye. 

Harold also said he was glad Leia's involvement was kept a surprise for most fans. To be fair, most were likely distracted by the excitement of the idea of Ewan McGregor and Hayden Christensen teaming up again after that incredible duel in "Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith," where Anakin learns the hard way not to mess with the man who has the high ground.