It was a moment that left many a Star Wars: The Clone Wars viewers tickled pink, and at least as many casual Star Wars fans slightly confused. The reveal of Darth Maul in Solo: A Star Wars Story was easily one of the bigger bombshells of a film that was often criticized as being a little too by-the-numbers, but according to actor Ray Park, the clues of the red-faced villain’s return were already online for anyone to see.
Regardless of where you stand on Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, most of us would agree that one of the movie’s stronger moments is the climactic lightsaber battle between Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and a brooding Sith Lord named Darth Maul. Though the antagonist was presumed dead at the end of the 1999 pic, he soon strolled back into the action with a pair of robot legs thanks to the animated Clone Wars TV series. But while that’s all well and good for voice actor Sam Witwer, it wasn’t until this year’s live action Han Solo spinoff movie that Park got a chance to reprise the role.
Naturally, he was happy to return to his most famous character, and though most of us didn’t anticipate the reveal, the actor told Forbes that he’d cryptically communicated the news via his social media activity:
“I may have deleted a bunch, but if you go back and check all my Instagram posts, I was secretly telling everyone, but no-one knew.”
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Of course, now that the news is out in the open, Park’s free to admit to dropping these clues, posting the above selfie a few weeks ago with the accompanying caption:
“Now… I wonder why I shaved my hair a wee while ago?”
As it stands, it’s unclear what’s to become of Darth Maul after his quick appearance Solo: A Star Wars Story, but Park insists that he has some great ideas for where his story could go from here. In the meantime, look out for Star Wars: Episode IX, which hits theaters on December 20th, 2019 and promises the return of a few more familiar faces.