Before the shoot from the fifth episode, but second film, The Empire Strikes Back, George Lucas had serious doubts about Yoda’s character. The Jedi Master was indeed almost deleted from the script …
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An animatronic that could have been very badly received
The film had to be completely finished for the producer to be reassured. Throughout the pre-production, George Lucas admits to having been afraid of the reaction of the fans when seeing this animated doll. It is only thanks to “Frank Oz who had performed well in rehearsals and Stuart Freeborn who worked very diligently to try to make the puppet work“that the American gave the green light.
A lot of things, like Yoda, were finished an hour before filming. I finally got to see Yoda finished, assembled, lit properly and that’s when I knew it was going to work.
The undeniable success of Yoda and vector of sequels
If today it is impossible to imagine Star Wars without Yoda, to the point that his presence asks questions about the main plot of the first films, George Lucas admits he was very scared to see the spectators come out during the screening at the time. Fortunately, the reverse has happened. The Jedi Master contributed to the success of the Disney + The Mandalorian series … and gave thousands of collector products !
Now it’s the turn of other characters to come back into the spotlight, especially Boba Fett which could join season 2 of The Mandalorian while the cinema releases are on hiatus.