Star Wars icon Hayden Christensen ‘teary-eyed’ over Darth Vader return

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Hayden Christensen appeared overcome with emotion and teary-eyed at Star Wars Celebration, where fans were able to shower him with love in person following his return as Darth Vader.

Last year, the actor made a long-awaited comeback as the Jedi-turned-Sith Anakin Skywalker in the Disney Plus TV series Obi-Wan Kenobi, reuniting with Ewan McGregor in the titular role.

The pair previously worked opposite each other in the prequel movies Episode II – Attack of the Clones and Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, which came out in 2002 and 2005 respectively.

Over the Easter bank holiday weekend, passionate followers of the franchise from across the globe ventured to Star Wars Celebration in London, where a panel was held for the cast and director of Obi-Wan Kenobi, as well as solo interviews with the stars of the show.

During his one-on-one conversation with an interviewer at the live stage, crowds swarmed around the platform as Hayden, 41, expressed how much it meant to him to be celebrated and held in such high esteem.

After being met by rapturous applause and cheers, he told the audience: ‘Man, you guys sure know how to make a guy feel good. That was very nice, thank you.’

‘We love you Hayden!’ one person yelled out, as he responded: ‘I love you guys too.’

‘You’re making me emotional!’ he then added, turning around to look at the many faces in the crowd, while giving subtle but humble nods in their direction.

At one point during the chat, the Canadian actor was asked: ‘What has been the best part about fan reaction, reception to Anakin over the years that you’ve played him?’

‘I mean – this,’ he responded, chuckling before sitting forward and appearing to wipe a tear from his eye.

His voice sounded as though it was starting to crack up as he continued: ‘I mean, this… I can’t tell you how much this means to me.’

Paying homage to the Star Wars aficionados attending the event, he said: ‘To get to be here with all of you, see all of the love that you have for this franchise.

‘To see all the incredible costumes… it’s a very unique thing that we all get to be a part of and I’m very grateful for that.’

When asked to deliver one more final message to the fans, Hayden concluded by saying: ‘I love you guys too.

‘I’ve said this before, but you guys really are the reason that we get to be here and that I’ve gotten to come back and play this character again. So from the bottom of my heart, thank you.’

One fan who commented on the video on YouTube remarked that it looked as though Hayden became ‘teary-eyed’ during the conversation, while others shared that they’d also become weepy over the interview.

During the Obi-Wan Kenobi panel, Hayden and Ewan were joined by the show’s director Deborah Chow, as well as their co-stars Vivien Lyra Blair and Indira Varma, who played Princess Leia Organa and Tala Durith respectively.

Ewan, 52, outlined how ‘proud’ he felt that the plot of the series was changed to focus on the young Princess Leia, instead of her twin brother Luke Skywalker, as was originally planned.

‘I didn’t really know what the story would be, but that was the starting place. It went through different iterations. It was a story about Obi-Wan and Luke for a while, and then I can’t remember exactly when that changed,’ he recollected.

‘It was a great change. I’m so proud that it’s a story about Obi-Wan and Leia.’

Obi-Wan Kenobi is available to watch on Disney Plus.

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