Star Wars fans think Lucasfilm just teased the return of Mace Windu – here's why

Mace windu still image
(Image credit: Lucasfilm)

Star Wars fans are speculating that Mace Windu, the popular Jedi portrayed by Samuel L Jackson in the prequel films who was killed off in Revenge of the Sith, could be returning to the franchise. It's a little wild, so bear with us while we explain.

In an official Star Wars Instagram post wishing the 72-year-old actor a happy birthday, the caption read, "The party isn’t over, it’s just beginning! Sending a very happy birthday to Samuel L Jackson."

(Image credit: Instagram)

The message is a reference to the character’s memorable line in Attack of the Clones, when Mace Windu and the Jedi arrive on Geonosis to battle Count Dooku and his droid army. Some of the fans in the replies think the specific wording here could be Lucasfilm's way of teasing Windu's return in a future Star Wars project.

It's most likely this is just a birthday message – the official Star Wars account does this frequently for actors in the series. After all, when you tweet about Star Wars every day, eventually you're going to run low on content.

The reason this kind of return seems more plausible now is that Disney just confirmed a whole host of new Star Wars TV shows and movies – filming is about to start on the Obi-Wan Kenobi series, and just this month it was confirmed that Hayden Christensen will reprise the role of Darth Vader for the show. This theoretically opens the door for other cameos from the prequels. While Windu is surely dead in the show's post-Episode III timeframe, showing up as a Force ghost – which Jedi often do after death – doesn't seem impossible. 

Our take on this is that some Star Wars fans are reading far too much into the post, a common problem in internet news spheres – but with more than 10 Star Wars projects on the table at Lucasfilm for the coming years, you can see why anything seems possible to observers right now.

As mentioned, Windu was seemingly killed by Emperor Palpatine in Revenge of the Sith, but the franchise has already proven itself more than willing to throw out the rule book and bring back ‘dead’ characters – not least Boba Fett in season 2 of The Mandalorian (who, incidentally, is getting his own spin-off series, The Book of Boba Fett, in December 2021).

In any case, Jackson himself would likely be up for returning. He told talk show host Stephen Colbert: “I’d really love to give one more run at Mace Windu in Star Wars.”

The force is strong with Disney

It’s a great time to be a Star Wars fan.

Coming off the back of the hugely popular Mandalorian season 2 finale – a series which has earned plaudits from fans and critics alike – Disney recently laid bare its plans for a volley of Star Wars content in the coming years at the company’s investor day.

The company announced or discussed the following new series, in case you missed it:

  • Obi-Wan Kenobi
  • Ahsoka 
  • Rangers of the New Republic 
  • Andor 
  • The Bad Batch 
  • Star Wars: Visions 
  • Lando 
  • The Acolyte 

That's in addition to a third season of The Mandalorian, and The Book of Boba Fett. If Mace Windu is indeed set for a return to the Star Wars universe – and it's a big if – he’s not short of entry points. 

  • New Star Wars movies announced – including Rogue Squadron for 2023 
Axel Metz
Phones Editor

Axel is TechRadar's UK-based Phones Editor, reporting on everything from the latest Apple developments to newest AI breakthroughs as part of the site's Mobile Computing vertical. Having previously written for publications including Esquire and FourFourTwo, Axel is well-versed in the applications of technology beyond the desktop, and his coverage extends from general reporting and analysis to in-depth interviews and opinion.  Axel studied for a degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick before joining TechRadar in 2020, where he then earned an NCTJ qualification as part of the company’s inaugural digital training scheme.