Obi-Wan Kenobi Secretly Hated C-3PO

By Chris Snellgrove | Updated

Obi-Wan Kenobi C-3PO Luke Skywalker

In the various Star Wars films, Obi-Wan Kenobi never really expressed any strong feelings about C-3PO. That makes sense, as the two didn’t spend that much time together on-screen and the Jedi got far more face time with R2-D2 than the golden protocol droid. Off-screen, though, the original Obi-Wan Kenobi actor hated C-3PO’s performance, with Sir Alec Guinness saying of A New Hope, “The only really disappointing performance was Tony Daniels as the robot — fidgety and over-elaborately spoken.”

Raging Robot Resentment

star wars C-3PO

It’s the kind of criticism that really cuts to the quick because Guinness seems to hate everything that Daniels did with this famous role. He didn’t simply dislike a single scene or a particular acting choice. C-3PO being fidgety and a prissy chatter is basically his whole character, meaning that the late, great Guinness hated this performance from top to bottom.

It’s worth noting that the Obi-Wan Kenobi actor may have had some other resentments coloring his assessment of the C-3PO actor’s performance. Right after his harsh criticism of Daniels’ performance, Guinness said with some apparent bitterness “Not that any of the cast can stand up to the mechanical things around them.”

While modern fans hold up the Original Trilogy as a golden age before the dark times of endless Star Wars CGI, it’s interesting that Guinness felt even back then that the human performances were getting overshadowed by the artificial ephemera Lucas filled almost every scene with.

Guinness’ Grumblings About Dialogue

Star Wars Obi-Wan Kenobi Luke Skywalker

Another thing that might have made the Obi-Wan Kenobi actor think negatively of the C-3PO performance is that he absolutely hated the dialogue that everyone (including himself) was given. In a now-infamous letter Guinness wrote to his friend Anne Kaufman, he complained about the film’s “rubbish dialogue” and admitted that he was just in this for the money…or, as he put it, “the lovely bread.” In that same letter, he complained that the young cast “make me feel 90 — and treat me as if I was 106.”

What About George Lucas?

george lucas darth maul

Plus, any criticism that the Obi-Wan Kenobi actor might have had about the C-3PO performance is, effectively, more a criticism of George Lucas than Anthony Daniels. Not only did Lucas write the dialogue but he was responsible for the overall voice each character had onscreen. Of course, his directions notoriously boiled down to just saying “faster, and more intense,” so maybe Daniels really did do his own thing and Lucas just liked what he saw.

Daniels Was A Good Sport


Even though the original Obi-Wan Kenobi disliked what Anthony Daniels did with C-3PO, it seems like Daniels himself didn’t hold any kind of grudge. As recently as season 1 of Ahsoka, Daniels tried to sneak in an homage to Guinness by having his prissy protocol droid say “you don’t need to see my identification.” Sadly, that line ended up on the cutting room floor.

An Overall Dislike For Star Wars

Obi-Wan Kenobi

The fact that Sir Alec Guinness disliked much of Star Wars and thought the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi was beneath him is very well known, but we were still surprised to discover that he singled out Anthony Daniels’ performance as C-3PO.

What are the odds the cranky older actor would hate the protocol droid performance so much above all the other actors? We don’t have our own protocol droid around, so we’re just going to assume the odds were at least slightly better than surviving a flight into an asteroid field.