Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith premiered in the United States on May 16th, 2005.
In one of the scenes, Obi-Wan confronts General Grievous (played by Ewan McGregor and Matthew Wood) with the phrase “Hello there!” to which the villain exclaims ravished “General Kenobi!”.
An early parody of the scene was uploaded to YouTube by Thereisnospoon303 on August 22nd, 2007.
With the rise of Prequel Memes in 2014, GIFs and image macros of “Hello there! General Kenobi!” started surfacing on pages like Tumblr, Imgur and Reddit.
Starting in 2017, the meme started taking over the r/PrequelMemes subreddit of Reddit, slowly turning into the most popular format on that part of the message boards.
In 2019, TikToks featuring the voice clip from the scene also started making appearances, spreading the meme on to a new platform.