The Star Wars universe is filled to the brim with creative and fascinating creatures. From the adorable Ewok to the terrifying Wampa to the smelly Tauntaun, the Star Wars universe has certainly introduced some of the most memorable creatures ever brought to life on film. With The Last Jedi just around the corner, it's certain that Lucasfilm would be introducing even more brand new creatures into the Star Wars canon and boy, are they poised to deliver. The Porgs and Caretakers just might be the fan favorites by the end of the movie but the cast has mixed feelings.
The Porgs Are The Galaxy's New Cutest Creatures
Ever since their debut via EW as part of its Star Wars coverage, the Porgs have quickly become a fan favorite before even appearing on screen. And why not? The Porgs might be the cutest Star Wars creatures we have ever seen.
These adorable, wide-eyed creatures are native to the newly-introduced planet of Ahch-To, where Luke Skywalker has been hiding. The creatures have furry, flapping wings and their size might remind you of a puffin. In fact, The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson revealed that puffins were the real-life inspiration for the Porgs:
If you go to Skellig at the right time of year, it’s just covered in puffins, and they’re the most adorable things in the world. So when I was first scouting there, I saw these guys, and I was like, 'Oh, these are part of the island.' And so the Porgs are in that realm.
While some could argue that the Porgs have been thrown into the film to sell toys, it's clear that their cuteness will serve a purpose in this film, even if it's just for comedic relief, especially since The Last Jedi looks to be a much darker installment than The Force Awakens. Similar to the ultra-cute Minions in Despicable Me or even the Ewoks in Return of the Jedi, the Porgs will most likely have some very adorable moments that will catch the attention of younger Star Wars fans.
The Force-Sensitive Caretakers Will Be Important
If you aren't sold on the Porgs yet, they aren't the only creatures residing on Ahch-To. As a matter of fact, there's another never-before-seen creature that we will meet as well: the Caretakers. These creatures have lived on the island of Ahch-To for thousands of years in a sort of seclusion, almost like nuns. Johnson explained a little bit about the Caretakers:
They’re kind of these sort of fish-bird type aliens who live on the island, Johnson says. They’ve been there for thousands of years, and they essentially keep up the structures on the island. They’re all female, and I wanted them to feel like a remote sort of little nunnery. [...] They’re these big matronly creatures, but they have these little skinny little bird feet. They were really fun to work with on set.
Those "skinny little bird feet" must have provided a few challenges on set. Unlike CGI or remote-controlled animatronic creatures, the Caretakers are completely practical in design, brought to life by a person inside the costume.
Johnson also explained that the Caretakers are actually able to communicate with Luke Skywalker by the means of "a blubbery sort of Scottish fish talk." What makes the story even more interesting is that they aren't the biggest fan of the Jedi and merely "tolerate" his presence on Ahch-To. It makes sense: if their sole purpose is to take care of the island and the most precious thing on it — the first Jedi Temple — then it's understandable the Caretakers would be peeved with Luke, who threatens that serenity and pristine nature.
In the end, it looks like the Porgs and the Caretakers will give their human counterparts a run for their money in The Last Jedi. Cute and nonthreatening but potentially pivotal to the film's plot, there's definitely more than meets the eye when it comes to these new Star Wars creatures.
The Last Jedi in theaters December 15, 2017.