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Hayden Christensen is back as Anakin Skywalker in Ahsoka for Disney Plus

Now this is podracing!

Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker stares off into the distance Image: Lucasfilm Ltd.
Joshua Rivera (he/him) is an entertainment and culture journalist specializing in film, TV, and video game criticism, the latest stop in a decade-plus career as a critic.

Anakin Skywalker hates sand, and he hates staying dead even more. Hayden Christensen, the actor who portrayed Star Wars villain Darth Vader in his pre-Dark Side years in Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith, is coming back to the role that made him infamous.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Christensen will reprise his role in Ahsoka, the forthcoming live-action Disney Plus series starring Rosario Dawson as Ahsoka Tano, the former apprentice of Anakin Skywalker and the rogue Jedi who appeared in season 2 of The Mandalorian.

A strange thing about Christensen’s casting is that Ahsoka is set roughly around the same time as The Mandalorian — five years after Return of the Jedi, when Darth Vader is dead. There are several ways around this — an obvious one is flashbacks, another would be recalling one of the final changes to Return of the Jedi being Christensen’s visage edited in as the Force Ghost of Anakin Skywalker. Given Ahsoka’s rich history with Anakin as his apprentice in The Clone Wars animated series, there’s a lot to draw from.

This is in addition to Christensen’s previously-scheduled appearance as Darth Vader in the Disney Plus series about Obi-Wan. Unlike Ahsoka, Obi-Wan Kenobi is set during the fall of the Republic, between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, when Anakin had just adopted the guise and cyborg body of Darth Vader, and he is very, very angry.

Ahsoka is still a ways off, but it’s been reported to begin production in 2022. Obi-Wan Kenobi’s release is, similarly, TBD.