The Mandalorian season two finale was a shocking moment in the show. Luke Skywalker showed up, giving Star Wars fans everything they’ve wanted since Return of the Jedi ended back in the 80s. Even so, it wasn’t a new idea. Since Mark Hamill has made it clear that his time playing Luke is over, fans have been speculating on how they’ll handle his character moving forward. After all, there are just too many more Star Wars projects out there for us to never see Luke Skywalker again. So how did they end up handling the beloved Jedi’s appearance?
If you saw Luke Skywalker’s face and thought, “But isn’t that a young Mark Hamill?”, you would be right. Though time travel was out of The Mandalorian’s budget, they settled for the next best thing and used technology to superimpose young Mark Hamill’s face on an actor’s body. You may have noticed Mark Hamill in the credits. He did the voice work for the role in the finale. The body was played by Max Lloyd-Jones.
Who is Max Lloyd-Jones? The 29-year-old has been a working actor in Hollywood since 2008 when he made his debut on the series Supernatural. Since then he’s mostly played bit parts, characters without names, or guest star roles where he shows up in one episode of something.
He had a longer run on the series When Calls The Heart though, as a regular. And now, in addition to playing Luke Skywalker’s body on The Mandalorian, he had an appearance on the series Project Blue Book.
Like so many of the people involved in Star Wars, Max Lloyd-Jones is British. He was born in London. Like Mark Hamill, he’s not exactly tall either. He’s only 5’7″. Mark Hamill claims to be 5’9″, but that seems dubious if you’ve ever seen him standing next to someone taller. Max Lloyd-Jones’ 5’7″ frame was a perfect fit for Luke Skywalker.
As with many decisions made for Star Wars productions, this resurrection of Luke Skywalker is a controversial move. They’d digitally de-aged characters before. We saw this in Rogue One with both Carrie Fisher and Peter Cushing. This was also done with Carrie Fisher in Rise of Skywalker. Does this mean they’ll be digitally creating Luke Skywalker every time we see him now? Not necessarily.
The Future of Luke Skywalker In Star Wars
If Mark Hamill’s voiceover work isn’t evidence enough that he is okay with being digitally superimposed in this way, he’s also said he’s good with it in interviews in the past. He’s too passionate and in love with Star Wars to see it any other way. He comes across as excited to see the franchise he’s worked with for so long continue to grow.
When telling Entertainment Weekly that he was officially done playing Luke Skywalker, he said that he was good with the role being recast or with digital work being done. “I had a beginning, middle, and end,” he said. “Those films gave me far more than I ever expected when we started out so it’s never even occurred to me. My farewell was in ‘Episode IX’ and it was bittersweet.”
If someone new were to play Luke Skywalker, who would it be? It probably won’t be Max Lloyd Jones. Mark Hamill has publicly supported Sebastian Stan for the part. Sebastian Stan has been public about his interest in taking it up as well. There are a growing number of fans cheering for this idea. While he didn’t appear in The Mandalorian, many are hoping that Sebastian Stan will play the role in Patty Jenkin’s Rogue Squadron. Wondering what he’d look like in the part? Check out the fanart from BossLogic on Instagram for an idea:
While there are definitely fans hoping to see Sebastian Stan play Luke Skywalker, there are also fans adamantly opposed. Some fans were thrilled to see Mark Hamill playing the part in any capacity in The Mandalorian finale. While the two opposing camps on this are strong, there are also fans who feel it’s more tasteful to create new characters and let Luke Skywalker’s part in the story end. Considering how many of the current Star Wars stories overlap in time, it’s hard to imagine there won’t be circumstances where it just makes too much sense to have Luke appear in one way or another.