According to Guinness, he grew so tired of Star Wars fan mail that he started throwing the letters out at one point. That said, his 2% cut of the Star Wars royalties allowed him to live quite comfortably, per his own account.
Interestingly enough, Ewan McGregor has also expressed discomfort with the franchise at times. Specifically, he became frustrated with fans who would ask him to sign merchandise just so they could turn around and sell it.
Toshiro Mifune Almost Played Obi-Wan
Well known for working with director Akira Kurosawa, Toshiro Mifune was Lucas’ ideal actor for the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi. However, the Japanese actor turned it down because of reservations that the role would “cheapen” the popular image of samurai. It’s understandable, as Lucas used Japanese-style clothing and the image of the wandering warrior right alongside laser swords and spaceships.
Mifune’s daughter Mika explained, “At the time, sci-fi movies still looked quite cheap as the effects were not advanced and he had a lot of samurai pride. So then, there was talk about him taking the Darth Vader role as his face would be covered, but in the end he turned that down too.”
Obi-Wan’s Voice in The Force Awakens Is Straight from the Original Trilogy
During Rey’s Force vision in The Force Awakens, the voices of old Jedi Masters can be heard. While she sees her own past and Luke Skywalker’s, Obi-Wan and Yoda speak to her. Ewan McGregor provided new dialogue for the scene: “These are your first steps.” But Rey’s name was actually spoken by Guinness, in a fashion. Producer Bryan Burk presented to director J. J. Abrams the sound of Guinness’ voice, cut from the word “afraid” to sound like “Rey.” Although Guinness passed away in 2000, he remains a part of the Star Wars Sequel Trilogy.
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