By Cameron Bonomolo
The Force is strong with Graham Hamilton. Credited as “Performance Artist – Jedi,” Hamilton follows Max Lloyd-Jones as the physical performer behind a Return of the Jedi era Luke Skywalker (a digitally de-aged Mark Hamill) in the latest chapter of The Book of Boba Fett. After returning in Season 2 of The Mandalorian, Jedi Master Skywalker teaches his prospective padawan — Mandalorian foundling Grogu, a.k.a. Baby Yoda — the ways of the Force in “Chapter 6: From the Desert Comes a Stranger.” Reacting to his debut as the ROTJ-aged Jedi, Hamilton shared a message of gratitude towards episode co-writers and Star Wars gurus Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni.
“Co-creating Luke Skywalker for [The Book of Boba Fett] with master [Hamill] was one of the most magical and fulfilling creative experiences of my life,” Hamilton wrote on Instagram of his shared credit with Hamill. “Deep gratitude to [Filoni] and [Favreau] for bringing me into the family and to all the geniuses [at Star Wars] + [Lucasfilm] who remind us of the power of myth, and the deep responsibility of artists who bring these archetypes to life. It’s hard to express what this all meant for me, how unimaginably moving it was and still is.”
A post shared by Graham Hamilton (@hamigraham)
“The 5 year old kid who sat night after night in a basement in Missoula [Montana] watching Star Wars is living his best life,” the NCIS and The Orville actor added. “I am humbled beyond words and forever grateful to all the incredible artists who welcomed me on this journey. Thank you thank you thank you. May the Force be with us all, always.”
Part body double, part CGI, and part deepfake technology, de-aging Hamill’s Luke Skywalker to five years post Jedi involved photographing and scanning the 70-year-old actor with Lola Visual Effect’s 2.5D process.
“They effectively reproduced a de-aged version of Mark for the shots by combining the texture from his face and also [the body double’s] younger face,” Industrial Light & Magic VFX supervisor Richard Bluff previously told IndieWire about the technology behind the younger Skywalker’s return in The Mandalorian. “The biggest challenge for this sequence was that we weren’t de-aging Mark in every single shot, and we had a variety of performances that Lola had to work on, too.”
Star Wars: The Book of Boba Fett next airs its season finale, “Chapter 7,” February 9 on Disney+.
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