Obi-Wan Kenobi Cast Member Used To Hate Star Wars

We hope that's changed.

By Michileen Martin | Published

ewan mcgregor obi wan

SPOILERS follow for episode 3 of Obi-Wan Kenobi.

Episode 3 of Obi-Wan Kenobi introduces us to a couple of new characters, but only one of them is one you might actually trust to not stab you in the back at the first opportunity. Indira Varma of Game of Thrones fame joins the cast of the series as Captain Tala — a double agent who works for the Empire but feeds info to the resistance. While she loves being a part of the franchise now, Varma says she wasn’t always the biggest Star Wars fan.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter published after her Obi-Wan Kenobi premiere, Indira Varma admitted she wasn’t always the biggest admirer of the far, far away galaxy. “As a young girl growing up in England, I didn’t particularly feel served by Star Wars because it was predominantly male,” Varma told THR. “Princess Leia, that was my hero because I had long hair I could do in those lovely wraps, but it didn’t feel like it was for me.”

indira varma
Indira Varma in Obi-Wan Kenobi

But, before you scream bloody murder, Indira Varma says she’s had a change of heart, though not because she’s changed. Instead, she’s been happy about the changes made to the franchise over the years.  “[W]atching over the decades how it’s evolved and become more modern and reflects the society — it’s become very exciting to be part of it and not just in terms of gender but also in terms of ethnicity and diversity,” Varma said. “I feel so privileged because of the way they tell stories.”

Indira Varma is perhaps best known as the actress who played Ellaria Sand on HBO’s fantasy series Game of Thrones, and she was there with another future Star Wars actor. Her character was the passionate paramour of Prince Oberyn Martell, played by Pedro Pascal — the future star of The Mandalorian. Among other things, Oberyn is famous for being on the receiving end of one of the most brutal deaths in the series. In season 4’s “The Mountain and The Viper,” Oberyn’s presumed victory over Gregor Clegane is ruined when Clegane crushes Oberyn’s head with his hands. 

Asked about the difference between working on Star Wars and being a part of Game of Thrones, Indira Varma said joining the former franchise was more “daunting” because it’s been a part of the pop culture landscape for so much longer than the latter. “[Star Wars has] been around for 45 years,” Varma said. “That’s my life! It’s a lot of people’s lifetimes.” 

It remains to be seen if Indira Varma’s time in Star Wars could go past Obi-Wan Kenobi. In spite of some pretty stacked odds facing her, the eponymous Jedi, and the young Leia (Vivien Lyra Blair), her character survives episode 3 of the series. But there are still three more episodes to go filled with storm troopers, ambitious Inquisitors, and of course the ruthless Darth Vader himself.

Obi-Wan Kenobi isn’t the last big franchise Indira Varma will be a part of. Next year she’ll be starring in Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning, Part One; the first half of Tom Cruise’s swansong for the franchise. Varma is being dutifully quiet about her part in the film, so we don’t yet know if we should expect her for Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning, Part Two.