In “Star Wars: Rebels,” the Inquisitors are high-ranking members of the Galactic Empire tasked with searching for Jedis who survived Order 66 to eliminate or induct them into their feared group. But Star Wars fans will be excited to know they will see the Jedi and Force-sensitive hunters in the flesh in the upcoming “Obi-Wan Kenobi.”
While we can expect to see a few familiar faces like the Grand Inquisitor (Rupert Friend) and The Seventh Brother (Sung Kang), the six-episode limited series introduces another Inquisitor to the Star Wars universe. Played by Moses Ingram, a determined Reva uses what she’s learned from Darth Vader (Hayden Christensen) to force Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) out of exile by any means necessary.
ThatsItLA joined their fellow journalists at the “Obi-Wan Kenobi” virtual press conference, where Ingram spoke about her excitement about her role as the villain, her expectations, playing around with a lightsaber, and bringing some representation to Star Wars.
Now, it’s not entirely surprising that Disney would be secretive about “Star Wars,” especially for a limited series like “Obi-Wan Kenobi.” But Ingram didn’t know she would be joining a Star Wars Project. “I think it came to me just like everything else does, but I didn’t know that it would be Star Wars,” she said. “The script was the thing that attracted me the most. It was edgy and fun and cool. And that just you know, I couldn’t say no.”
“I was surprised. From what I knew of Star Wars. I didn’t realize it was that dangerous,” Ingram added. “It felt dangerous, what I was reading. Oh, I like this. I’m into this. Yeah. So, I was really excited. Absolutely.”
While Ingram may not be well-versed with the Star Wars universe, her experience working on the project was so enjoyable that it exceeded her expectations. “I think this whole experience has far exceeded my expectations of what it might have been. I so enjoyed, just going to work every day,” she said. “We had such a great working atmosphere, and there were so many lifelong Star Wars fans who are living their dreams by working on this series, and it’s really nice to be a fly on the wall, for other people’s experiences of the thing as well. It by far exceeded my expectations in the most beautiful way.”
Of course, a role like Reva was too good to pass up. Getting the chance to play a villain who hunts down Jedis and Force-sensitive beings is a dream come true for those who wander the Dark Side. “She’s really smart. And she plays the offense. And she’s always ten steps ahead, you know, she is a subordinate of Darth Vader. So she’s going to do everything she can to get the job done to the best of her ability,” Ingram described. “And I think I was most intrigued by just her fervor.”
And Ingram described tapping into the dark side as “really fun.” “It’s fun to be there. It’s fun to be bad. And also, the weaponry, and the stunt work, once you get to a point where your body is confident doing the moves that plays into it, as well as the Suttirat [Anne Larlarb], our costume designer, did such a good job,” she said. “Building something that when you step into it, it lends itself to a feeling, know what I mean? And so, I was happy to be there. I was really happy to be there.”
Costuming, makeup, and hair do more than just bring a character to life. It is also the chance to represent those within your community in a way that brings more meaningful diversity to a world like Star Wars. And Ingram credits director Deborah Chow and the artisans for allowing her to be herself and not hide with unnatural hairstyles. “I actually owe a big credit to you [speaking to Chow] for welcoming me in and caring about my thoughts in terms of who Riva might be. And the costume was already made, hair in particular. Her hair was different in the initial envisioning of the character, and it was just something that my hair didn’t do naturally,” Ingram said. “But that was so great about hearing me out on that. And, that’s how we ended up with the braids. You know, it was really important for me to do what my hair does”
“Yeah, the hair was a big deal. And another thing, I remember growing up and watching certain things and with my brothers and like, ‘You’re not strong enough,” she said. “Like, it’s for boys, you know what I mean? But I think what’s cool about this is, you can fight like a girl and be better.”
Of course, being an inquisitor also means you get to use a very cool red lightsaber. But you’d better come prepared when you go up against one of the greats like Obi-Wan Kenobi. And so Ingram went to work. “We train for about four months before we ever even got to the set,” she said. “The every day regular strength and cardio, and then three days a week of Jedi school on top of that, which at the beginning was a little intimidating because I come in and we’re doing lightsaber work. And, of course, he’s [referring to McGregor] been doing this for years, flipping it and wielding it, and I’m like, ‘God, I’m never gonna get it. I look terrible.’ But you know, if at first, you don’t succeed, try and try again.”
And Reva could be more than a match for our wise Jedi with that kind of attitude. But McGregor admits that he had to go through a few lightsaber drills for his training to come back. “Yeah, we did a lot of lightsaber drills with JoJo Eusebio and his team. And yeah, it was something that you have to work on.” McGregor admits.
The first two episodes of “Obi-Wan Kenobi” debuts exclusively on Disney+ on May 27, 2022.