At The Movies: McGregor stars in the Stephen King thriller Dr. Sleep

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Ewan McGregor felt somewhat tortured for the last few years because while he was signed up to reprise his role as Obi-Wan Kenobi, he couldn’t publicly talk about it.

McGregor added that while he understood the silence was a necessary evil, “I’m not really brought up that way. I’d much rather be honest with people.

“But the studios are, and the franchises are, understandably secretive,” he said. “And they want to keep everything a secret till they want it released.”

McGregor spoke about his struggle at Tuesday’s premiere of his thriller “Doctor Sleep,” which is being released in the United States next Friday.

McGregor made his debut as a young Obi-Wan in “Star Wars: The Phantom Menace” in 1999 and was also in the other two “Star Wars” prequels.

So he would often be asked by reporters if he would return to other “Star Wars” projects.

“Once they started making spin-off movies, there was such a lot of speculation about an Obi-Wan spin-off. And I was asked every time I did an interview by people, would I do it? And it just became embarrassing, because it sounded a bit like I was trying to get the part from Disney. You know, like, I was saying, ’Well, you know. Well, if they give me a call, I’d be, you know, I’d be interested,” he said. “Fans (would) like being angry with Disney, saying, ‘They better not cast someone else.’ And I was thinking, ‘Who else are they going to cast, you know? Like just let me say it.’”

Disney announced the Obi-Wan series in August at the D23 Expo. It is set to premiere on the Disney Plus streaming service next year.

“And now (that) the cat is out of the bag that we’re doing again, I’m really excited about it,” McGregor said. “It’s a really phenomenal story line that we’re going to tell.”