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Where are the actors from Star Wars: Episode I now and how old are they?

We take a walk down memory lane to revisit the actors of what was one of the first Star Wars experiences of an entire generation: Episode I.

Where are the actors from Star Wars: Episode I now and how old are they?

1999 is considered one of the best years in modern cinema. The end of the decade brought us great works that have established themselves as true gems of cult cinema: Fight Club, The Matrix, The Sixth Sense, American Beauty, and The Green Mile are just a few of the great works released that year and are part of an amazing list. But along with these, we also saw the return of one of the icons of late 70′s space opera and science fiction. Star Wars returned with Episode I - The Phantom Menace, kicking off a prequel trilogy that would introduce us to a young Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi as they meet and begin the origin story of one of cinema’s greatest villains.

It’s been almost 24 years since the film’s release, and as part of Star Wars Day, we’re going to take a look back at some of the film’s key actors and actresses, where they are now, and what’s become of them. Let’s get started.

Ewan McGregor

  • Character: Obi-Wan Kenobi
  • Actual Age: 52
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The Scottish actor who rose to fame with Trainspotting was chosen to play one of the greatest Jedi Masters, Obi-Wan Kenobi. In addition to a strong career in film and television, he reprised his role as the Jedi Master last year in the Obi-Wan Kenobi series.

Liam Neeson

  • Character: Qui-Gon Jinn
  • Actual Age: 70
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The Northern Ireland actor brought to life one of the franchise’s most beloved Jedi Masters. Neeson, who already came from a huge list of films such as Excalibur, Schindler’s List or Les Miserables, was only in one film of the franchise to continue his prolific career, highlighting the franchise where he had “a very particular set of skills”. He returned to reprise his role as Qui-Gon Jinn as well as cameos in Star Wars films and series.

Jake Lloyd

  • Character: Anakin Skywalker
  • Actual Age: 34
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Young Jake Loyd had the difficult task of giving life to a very young Anakin Skywalker, a boy with big dreams that later the dark side would turn him into one of the most powerful Sith Lords. Lloyd came from a short career in film, and after Star Wars and a few movies, he left his acting career to have a normal life.

Natalie Portman

  • Character: Padmé Amidala
  • Actual Age: 41
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The Israeli-born actress was responsible for bringing the Regent of Naboo to life and was one of the key pieces of the Star Wars story. Though her career was short before Episode I, Portman had already shown great potential in Luc Besson’s film Léon: The Professional. Her career has taken her from her stellar performance in Black Swan, which won her Best Actress at the four major film awards, to being part of the MCU in the role of Jane Foster.

Ian McDiarmid

  • Character: Sheev Palpatine / Darth Sidious
  • Actual Age: 78
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Although the Scottish actor began his career in the theater, his leap into film eventually led him to bring the great Star Wars villain, Emperor Palpatine, to physical life. This allowed him to return to his role in The Phantom Menace. In addition to appearing in the prequel trilogy as Sheev Palpatine / Darth Sidious, the actor returned to reprise his role in both 2004 re-releases of The Empire Strikes Back, 2019′s The Rise of Skywalker, and 2022′s Obi-Wan Kenobi series.

Ahmed Best

  • Character: Jar Jar Binks
  • Actual Age: 49
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The musician and actor was responsible for bringing Jar Jar Binks to life through motion capture. However, Best left Star Wars after receiving backlash from fans. Fortunately, the actor returned to bring Jedi Master Kelleran Beq to life and played a major role in The Mandalorian Season 3.

Ray Park

  • Character: Darth Maul
  • Actual Age: 48
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The Scottish actor and stuntman rose to fame by bringing the villain Darth Maul to life - and delivering one of the most iconic fights in Star Wars history. His career took him to films such as X-Men, GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra, and series such as Heroes and Nikita. Park reprised his role as Darth Maul in Solo: A Star Wars Story, as well as in the final season of The Clone Wars.


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