Dave Filoni reveals all about The Mandalorian’s gun-toting assassin droid!
On Christmas Day, Jon Favreau shocked the Star Wars community when he posted a picture on his Instagram from the set of The Mandalorian of what appeared to be IG-88. The notorious assassin droid became a fan-favourite character during the infamous “Bounty Hunter Meeting” in Empire Strikes Back and has since seen his legacy built upon thanks to his appearance in dozens of literary adventures from a galaxy far, far away.
Sadly, those hopes were dashed when it was confirmed that Favreau and his team had decided to use an all-new assassin droid as the sidekick to their Mandalorian lead named IG-11. In the months that followed, it was confirmed that IG-11 will be voiced by visionary filmmaker and all-round superhero Taika Waititi.
Recently, IGN caught up with Lucasfilm legend Dave Filoni and inquired as to why the production team had decided to start fresh with a new droid instead of utilising an old friend:
“For me, working on Star Wars so long, I tend to like to lean towards the creation of new characters,” Filoni explained. “I love and respect the old characters and the classic characters – and sometimes I think maybe I’m a bit too reverent with things – but I like areas that are undefined now. Like my experience creating Ahsoka [Tano for Star Wars: The Clone Wars] in a space that was fairly well defined between two films, and yet we were able to land and add a valuable piece to that story in the prequels that didn’t take away from any of Anakin or Obi-Wan’s arc.”
“So a droid like IG-88, if you know the Expanded Universe and the Star Wars history, there are a lot of stories around him or what might’ve happened to that particular droid.” Filoni continued. “So out of respect for people that have been with this franchise a long time, it’s like, ‘well if we do something with this space, would that be contradicting those stories?’ So it’s better just to say, ‘Well, there are other droids,’ it’s not like it was a unique assassin droid. And then we have a little more free-range. I mean, people forget in Empire, you never even see him walk or take a step – the prop was actually bolted to the floor. So just giving him feet was something new and original. But yeah, I just gravitate to the open field that you get with new characters, and then when you do bring up something, if you choose to, like when we brought Obi-Wan finally into Star Wars Rebels, I think it becomes significant and special.”
Leave it to Dave Filoni to be the voice of wisdom. Even though IG-88 is not involved in The Mandalorian, IG-11 looks to be a very worthy replacement imparted with an awesome and lethal arsenal. If his role in the trailer is anything to go by, we can all look forward to witnessing his assault on the poor and unsuspecting denizens of the Outer Rim when the series debuts on Disney+ … and that is damn exciting.
The Mandalorian streams on Disney+ from November 12th.
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Phil Roberts is the Owner, Daily Content Manager and Editor of Future of the Force. He is passionate about Star Wars, Batman, Star Trek, Indiana Jones, King Kong, and the Ray Harryhausen movies. Follow him on Twitter @philthecool where he uses the force frequently!