Hayden Christensen ‘reluctant’ to have his daughter see him as Darth Vader

Hayden Christensen says he is “reluctant” for his eight-year-old daughter to see him onscreen as the villainous Darth Vader in the Star Wars franchise.

The Canadian actor, 42, said he had been “dragging his feet” with introducing his daughter to the character, who often appears in “disturbing scenes”.

Christensen first appeared in 2002’s Star Wars: Episode II – Attack Of The Clones as young jedi Anakin Skywalker, who goes on to become the sci-fi supervillain.

Obi-Wan Kenobi photocall – London
Christensen recently reprised the role for spin-off series Obi-Wan Kenobi, alongside his friend and colleague Ewan McGregor (Ian West/PA)

After starring in the 2005 follow-up, Revenge Of The Sith, he recently reprised the role for Disney+ spin-off series Obi-Wan Kenobi, alongside his friend and colleague Ewan McGregor.

Speaking to Rogue One star Diego Luna as part of Variety’s “actors on actors” series, Christensen said his daughter had yet to watch the films.

“She’s eight now. I don’t know if I can wait much longer,” he said.

I know I’ve been dragging my feet a little bit. She knows that I’m in Star Wars and that I played this character, but she’s never seen it yet.

“I’m getting to that. I’m trying to figure out the best sort of point of entry. There are some disturbing scenes I’m reluctant for her to see at this age.”

Cannes Film Festival 2005 – Star Wars Episode 3 Revenge of the Sith – World Premiere – Palais des Festival
Natalie Portman and Hayden Christensen starred together in the Star Wars franchise (Anthony Harvey/PA)

Christensen added that he had brought his daughter on set while shooting Obi-Wan Kenobi, but that she had only seen him play Anakin during filming of a flashback sequence.

“She got to see me swing a lightsaber with Ewan. She was very concerned for my wellbeing. She was afraid that one of us was going to get hurt,” he said.

Christensen said the Star Wars franchise held “a very special place in my heart” and that the chance to reprise his famous role had been a “thrilling invitation”.

Luna stars as rebel fighter Cassian Andor in both Rogue One and TV series Andor, the second season of which is due to arrive in August 2024.