One of the less-frequent, although still present, rumors running throughout the production of STAR WARS EPISODE VII is that Liam Neeson would reprise his Qui-Gon Jinn role from STAR WARS EPISODE I: THE PHANTOM MENACE. This would, presumably, be as a Force Ghost or somesuch.
This always seemed a bit of a long-shot for a number of reasons, not the least of which is: I’m told there’s a pointed effort to distance these new SW films from the prequel era as much as possible, while still maintaining ‘continuity.’
In this interview with HeyYouGuys, Neeson indeed confirms that he hasn’t been asked to return for EPISODE VII.
Not at all surprising, although a teeny touch disappointing. I've always felt Neeson’s character was potentially very interesting, although serviced by frequently inane material throughout EPISODE I.
I love the idea that Qui-Gon misread Anakin so dramatically. In a very real sense, much of the Anakin Skywalker madness and debacle...thus the story of the STAR WARS films to date...springs from Qui-Gon’s fateful decision to spring Anakin from Tatooine. What would've happened if Qui-Gon had just left him with his mom? Lots to work with in terms of resonance and fallout there. I’ve always wanted to see Qui-Gon developed further, even through his perspective as a Force Ghost, but I also understand why doing so wouldn’t fit into the current equation.
But, who knows, maybe someday?
Or, maybe not...