Mark Hamill looks unrecognizable in his new Knightfall role

The actor plays a grizzled vet who trains new initiates to the Order. Sound familiar, Star Wars fans?

Gael Fashingbauer Cooper
CNET freelancer Gael Fashingbauer Cooper, a journalist and pop-culture junkie, is co-author of "Whatever Happened to Pudding Pops? The Lost Toys, Tastes and Trends of the '70s and '80s," as well as "The Totally Sweet '90s." If Marathon candy bars ever come back, she'll be first in line.
Gael Fashingbauer Cooper

It's a big hairy deal: Star Wars star Mark Hamill's familiar Luke Skywalker face is almost buried under old-age makeup and a long gray beard for his role as Talus in the medieval drama Knightfall, a historical-fiction show about the Knights Templar on the History channel. 


Luke, I am your...great-great-grandfather? Tom Cullen, left, plays Landry, and Mark Hamill, right, plays Talus in the second season of Knightfall.

Larry Horricks/History

Hamill's character is a veteran of the Crusades who was imprisoned for a decade and now trains new initiates to the Order. Those last seven words should reverberate with anyone who saw Hamill as Old Luke in Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

"We look forward to offering our viewers a grittier, darker 'Knightfall' in season 2 and welcoming Mark to the cast," said Eli Lehrer, History executive vice president of programming.

Knightfall was recently renewed for a second season, and in addition to Hamill, is adding Tom Forbes and Genevieve Gaunt to the cast. The Knights Templar were a Catholic military order active from the 1100s to the 1300s, and according to History, were among the most skilled fighting units of the Crusades.

Hamill posted that he was picked up at 5 a.m. on Tuesday, his 67th birthday, to work on Knightfall, and shared a cast photo as well as a photo of the surprise birthday cake he was given.

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