Film and Music Electronic Magazine

Fans Say No to Hayden Christensen Being Added to ‘Return of the Jedi’

Star Wars Anakin Skywalker

Image via Disney/Lucasfilm

George Lucas’ alterations to the original trilogy have always been intensely controversial. The most famous will always be the “Han shot first” fan campaign, but not far behind is inserting Hayden Christensen as Anakin’s Force Ghost in Return of the Jedi. This erases part of Sebastian Shaw’s performance, not to mention that it doesn’t make much sense that Anakin’s ghost is him as a younger man.

Now, a fan on r/StarWars is wondering if Disney could go one step further. The current editions of Return of the Jedi still feature Shaw in the scene where Vader is unmasked by Luke. A thread points out that in four years, Christensen will be the same age as Vader in Return of the Jedi, so why not digitally insert him into that scene, too?

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the reaction is a universal “hard no”. In fact, the change that fans want to see most is erasing Christensen from Return of the Jedi and reinstating Shaw as Force Ghost Anakin. It’s pointed out that wiping his performance is disrespectful to the actor, and that the original trilogy should just be left alone.

It’s perhaps a measure of how strongly fans feel about this that even diehard Christensen fans don’t think this change should happen. That’s despite everyone being much more positive about the actor’s Star Wars contributions recently, with many fans reappraising his Anakin after he crushed it in Obi-Wan Kenobi.

Placing him into this Return of the Jedi scene is clearly a bridge too far, even for the most dedicated fans. We agree that the original trilogy should just be left alone – and we’d love to see an official “despecialized” release of the theatrical versions of all three movies.

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