It's funny how the stars literally align for those who get their opportunities to shine. For Mark Hamill, fate could had set a different path if he had better success on an ABC TV series he starred. Posting on Instagram, the actor opened up about how a canceled western led to the biggest signature role as Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: A New Hope (1977). "FUN FACT: If #TheTexasWheelers was a ratings success & renewed for a second season, I would have been unavailable to play Luke. #FickleFingerOfFate" he wrote.
Mark Hamill's Western The Texas Wheelers
The ABC series The Texas Wheelers, which ran from 1974-75, was an earthy comedy about the four motherless Wheeler children and their lovable, but cantankerous, father Zack. With Zack avoiding work, Truckie led the clan, with Doobie (Hamill), Boo, and T.J. The series also starred Jack Elam, Gary Busey, Karen Obediear, Tony Becker, and Bruce Kimball. While Hamill was already a regular on TV with guest spots and recurring roles, The Texas Wheelers was his first starring role.
Hamill's New Fronter in Star Wars
Hamill's Luke would go on to remain a staple of the franchise in the remaining episodes from the remaining original trilogy to the sequel trilogy reprising the role in live-action for the first time in 32 years in The Force Awakens (2015) following Return of the Jedi (1983). While the actor's career hasn't reaped from the franchise as much as say his co-star Harrison Ford has, he was offered one more opportunity to relive his younger glory years on the Disney+ series The Mandalorian. In the season two finale, a CG body double was used and the Hamill's face de-aged to resemble his 1983-self with the actor lending his voice doing his best to sound decades younger to save the day.
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