Saga Obi-Wan Kenobi: Ewan McGregor vs Alec Guinness

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by darth_mccartney, Mar 17, 2013.

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Who's the better Obi Wan: McGregor vs Guinness

Ewan McGregor (Episodes I - III) 88 vote(s) 62.9%
Alec Guinness (Episodes IV - VI) 52 vote(s) 37.1%
  1. darth_mccartney Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 3, 2008
    star 2
    Which is your favorite and why?! :)
  2. Alexrd Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2009
    star 5
  3. Placeholder Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 30, 2013
    star 4
    I voted for Guinness, I think he had a stronger performance. McGregor was a little stiff sometimes, probably because of all the green screen stuff. To his credit, I think he was a pretty good Obi Wan overall and was one of the stronger performers in the PT, but the nod goes to Guinness
    kainee likes this.
  4. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    I voted for McGregor, but honestly it's probably not a fair comparison. Guinness established the role, definitely, but he was never really able to flesh it out that much because at that point in the story Kenobi is so set as the elder mentor. In the PT, McGregor gets to play him as a young man, and with all his flaws, so he's a more dynamic figure. The material was just stronger for his character.
  5. T-R- Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2003
    star 4
    Alec because that was the guy I saw in the theaters when I was a kid. Ewan did a great job thoug, except for the mullet and beard from AotC.
  6. VMeran Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 5, 2012
    star 1
    As much as I love Old Ben, the Obi-Wan I relate to the most is the one from the PT, so it would be Ewan McGregor for me. ;)
  7. ezekiel22x Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 9, 2002
    star 5
    Agree with J_F_P. Guinness did his part well, but McGregor had the benefit of a lot more character depths to explore beyond the wise old wizard. Much like the films they belong to as a whole, OT Kenobi kind of resides in a more basic fairy tale bubble, while PT Kenobi is closer to ground level humanity and thus allowed to be portrayed as someone composed of quiet dignity, casual condescension, and relationship harming stubbornness all at the same time. There's way more to absorb with the PT incarnation of the character, and that's why I primarily see McGregor as Kenobi.

    Well, that and the simple fact that the last light of day scene with Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan in TPM is beautiful beyond words
  8. Aaronaman Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2013
    star 4
    I voted for McGregor for two reasons.....

    1. Because he did a great job in the PT
    2. I couldn't vote for Gunniess after reading that he threw anyway any fan mail from SW fans without even reading it, the films gave him the biggest pay out of all the movies he did and he owed a lot to the SW fans he ignored! Not cool Alec, not cool!!!
  9. Force Smuggler Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    Both were amazing but have to go with Guiness. Just connected with him more. McGregor was good though.
    Wasn't there a story several years ago McGregor didn't like the Obi-Wan role after the PT was finished? Or was that a rumor?
  10. Valairy Scot Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    Twisting of Ewan's words: in response to a question, he "admitted" it was easier, or more fun, or something like that to work with actual actors rather than against a green screen. It was reported as Ewan didn't like working on Star Wars movies.

    That's like someone saying they prefer chocolate to vanilla (though liking both) being reported as saying they hate vanilla and it tastes awful.
    kainee likes this.
  11. Force Smuggler Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    Oh. I remember that know. Thank you @Valairy Scot. I remembered hearing about it but didn't remember the outcome of that.
  12. Darth_Kiryan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 13, 2009
    star 4
    See, these are both two valid opinions. it is actually really hard to decide between the two. i mean, they both have their strengths and weaknesses in their respective trilogies. Ewan especially because he tried to play it to the role that Guiness defined.

    this would be the only answer i could agree with.
  13. Jedifirefly5 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 5, 2012
    star 2
    They're the same person onscreen.
  14. Jedi General Gelderd Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 6, 2004
    star 5
    I love the character, so without Ewan or Alec we wouldn't have Kenobi.

    But just for the amount of character development we got to see and the brilliant ranges of emotion, drama, humour and conflict, I give my vote for Ewan. A tough job to fill, taking on a much loved character when he was younger and he pulled it off perfectly.
  15. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2009
    star 4
    This is Obi-Wan Kenobi, legendary Jedi Knight & hero of the Clone Wars, circa 0 years ABY:

    [IMG]

    This is a rendition of Obi-Wan Kenobi, Jedi Knight & Republic General, circa 20-30 years BBY:

    [IMG]



    This is Obi-Wan Kenobi, as played in a re-telling of the final days of the Old Republic, circa 28 years ABY:

    [IMG]


    I'll only ever accept one Obi-Wan Kenobi as the real one, the same as I'll only ever accept one Luke Skywalker. Great though Ewan McGregor was, he can only ever hope to walk in the footsteps of a legend.
    For me, Alec Guinness conveyed more about the PT between the lines of his OT dialogue than the three entire films of the PT themselves delivered.
    Last edited by Darth_Nub, Mar 18, 2013
  16. bstnsx704 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 11, 2013
    star 3
    Apples and ora... No, wait, 'apples and oranges' implies that they are different but equally good.

    Apples and apples. While they are two different actors, they felt to me like like one complete whole. One can't be better than the other one because, for all intents and purposes, they are doing the exact same thing. And both do so brilliantly.
  17. EHT New Films Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2007
    star 6
    ^ I agree. I can't vote in this because I thought they both portrayed Obi-Wan during that respective part of his life perfectly. Out-of-universe, I guess I could give the nod to Guinness because he established the character, and much of what McGregor was doing was brilliant mimicry of that performance... but that would still not be fair to McGregor because he did that so well and it was the nature of the role when he took it.
    kainee, Bale and Valairy Scot like this.
  18. thesevegetables Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 11, 2012
    star 4
    I think MacGregor did a great job as OBI-WAN, an active, proud Jedi. Guinness played "Old Ben" best, but wasn't a more typical lightsaber-swinging Jedi archetype something yeah. This made sense in my head.
  19. Sitara Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 8, 2001
    star 3
    I wish Obi Wan had remained cleanshaven throughout the PT. He looked quite handsome and striking in TPM.

    We could always assume he grew the beard during his exile to Tatooine, to you know, blend in better/disguise himself somewhat. After all, the kind of beard Guiness has only takes a few days to grow.
  20. Vthuil Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 3, 2013
    star 4
    Eh, I think he would have looked too young in AOTC and ROTS without the beard.
  21. T-R- Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2003
    star 4
    I agree, however, they should've just went with the RotS look in AotC instead of the beard and mullet used. The look in AotC does not look like a young Kenobi IMHO.
  22. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2009
    star 4
    It could have gone completely wrong & been almost universally rejected, but I still do wonder how well the completely different look for the Obi-Wan might have worked in the PT:

    [IMG]

    [IMG]

    [IMG]

    [IMG]
    Last edited by Darth_Nub, Mar 19, 2013
    kainee likes this.
  23. Jarren_Lee-Saber Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 16, 2008
    star 4
    Really? In the documentaries of TPM he goes on about how thrilled he is to be in Star Wars. It was Alec who pissed all over it.
  24. Jarren_Lee-Saber Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 16, 2008
    star 4
    I would have to give it to Ewan, and its kinda an easy choice.

    Alec always looked like he was totally bored and just waiting to finish & pick up his paycheck.
    Kao Cen Darach, kainee and Death T like this.
  25. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

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    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2009
    star 4
    That's actually not the case - Alec Guinness' disparaging remarks about SW tend to be about the obsessive fandom, not the films themselves. The small handful of little jibes he makes about the dialogue are much the same as those of Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Kenny Baker, et al. There's a thread over in the CT forum which addresses Alec Guinness' supposed hatred of Star Wars - http://boards.theforce.net/threads/does-sir-alec-guinness-really-hate-sw.50009350/

    Ewan McGregor, on the other hand - it was after TPM was released (i.e. after those docos were shot) that his own negativity emerged, and it was about the films, not the franchise. A fair bit was taken out of context, particularly comments about working against blue- and greenscreens, not to mention his reaction to the title, 'Attack of the Clones'. Some reporter asked him what he thought of it, and he thought it was a "terrible, terrible title." What he didn't even know was that it was the just-announced title of the next Star Wars film.
    There are a number of snotty little remarks he's made here & there, but in all fairness, I've never had the impression that he was particularly venomous when he made them, and he's certainly been quite positive in recent times, even putting his hand up for an Obi-Wan spinoff film.
    He really just comes across as another one of us OT-era SW fans who was a little bit disappointed by the new ones not being quite what he expected or wanted. He still put in the effort for ROTS, arguably the best performance of the film, so he can't have been all that down on the PT.
    Last edited by Darth_Nub, Mar 19, 2013