EntertainmentHayden Christensen Nearly Talked Himself Out Of Auditioning For...

Hayden Christensen Nearly Talked Himself Out Of Auditioning For Anakin Skywalker

Hayden Christensen’s trepidation was warranted. Darth Vader — thanks to his iconic all-black armor and the legendary voice acting from James Earl Jones – became one of the greatest movie villains of all time and a pop culture icon when the character debuted in the original “Star Wars” in 1977.

Though Darth Vader was briefly redeemed at the end of “Return of the Jedi,” for two decades it was left up to fans’ imaginations to fill in the details of his backstory and humanize the character. So, when Hollywood finally decided to give us a younger version of Anakin Skywalker, it was a given that a contingent of passionate fans would reject it, no matter how good the chosen actor’s portrayal would be.

Whoever was cast to play the beloved villain, criticism was sure to come their way. Even the then-9-year-old Jake Lloyd was bullied for his portrayal of the character in 1999’s “Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace.” Sadly, the bullying ultimately forced him into retirement in 2001. James Earl Jones himself (with a little help from de-aging technology) could’ve stepped into the role and probably still received some backlash.

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