So given the spoiler tag in the title of this post, it likely goes without saying that you really shouldn’t read this post without having seen the film.
Here is your last chance to leave.
In addition to some big surprises regarding the plot of the film, Star Wars: The Last Jedi saw the return of one beloved character in the form of Yoda. Not only was everyone’s favorite Force user back, but he was back in actual puppet form! That’s right, no more CG for Yoda (other than that Force ghost outline).
Additionally, we saw that this version of Yoda was the more crotchety version we grew to love in Empire. Speaking with Uproxx, director Rian Johnson discussed the return of that more ornery version of the character:
“That felt really important to me. And, actually, I cut some of that out and Frank Oz said to me I had to put it back. Because when I first pitched him the scene, it’s like the Yoda from Empire is back because that’s the one Luke had the emotional connection with. And that’s why we did the puppet and recreated the Empire puppet: Neal Scanlan and his team did a recreation of the Yoda puppet. It’s not only a puppet, it’s an exact replica of the Empire puppet. They found the original molds for it. They found the woman that painted the original eyes for Yoda. Then Frank came and worked with them for a few weeks to get the puppet right. He did a lot of testing and a lot of adjusting with the puppet creators. It was amazing to watch the process. The idea that the last time Luke saw Yoda was in Return of the Jedi and the notion of getting back to that version of Yoda to form the emotional connection with Luke – including a glimpse of the impishness, as part of their relationship. It made a lot of sense.”
In a world where CG is king, it’s increasingly nice when we see some throwback special effects, and the inclusion of a puppet Yoda certainly helped to be not only a throwback in visuals, but in audience’s emotional connection to the character. Seeing that same-looking puppet, really helped to cement the emotional connection I felt when watching Empire decades ago.
What did you think of the use of the character? Let us know your thoughts down below!
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