Joe Dante, Gremlins and Gremlins II: The New Batch director, recently stated that Baby Yoda, whose name is Grogu in The Mandalorian, is a copy of Gizmo, Gremlins’ star creature.
“The Gremlins” director Joe Dante says that Baby Yoda from #TheMandalorian was “completely stolen” from the lovable Mogwai Gizmo “and is just out-and-out copied. Shamelessly, I would think.” https://t.co/NAbcOP2vt3 pic.twitter.com/U2MnNsBfIo
— IndieWire (@IndieWire) July 14, 2022
Dante stated that “I believe the longevity of (the movies) is really important to this one character (Gizmo), which is essentially like an infant,” in an interview with San Francisco Chronicle. “Which brings us to Baby Yoda who is completely stolen, and has been out-and-out copied. He added, “I would think that it was shameless.”
Twitter was used by some fans to highlight the similarities.
Valid criticism from the director of Silence of the Hams. 🙄
Grogu looks like what Yoda’s species might look like as a “baby.” Maybe Gizmo was just a fuzzy Yoda?https://t.co/CeKcvBrRbB
— Tom Gehrke 😷 (@tomgehrke) July 17, 2022
Although the characters look similar, the Disney+ character is more like a baby Yoda from Star Wars. Before the official name of the Child was released, fans quickly noticed the similarities between the characters and gave the character “Baby Yoda”, a nickname.
Jon Favreau, Mandalorian’s executive producer, said in an interview that Dave Filoni (executive producer/director of the show) also took inspiration from Steven Spielberg’s E.T. When sketching ideas for the show. “Dave had drawn a sketch of an E.T./Michelangelo. According to Dateline, Favreau stated that it was an inspiring moment.
Favreau said, “Then Doug Chiang and all the art department started drawing it, and then the Legacy [Effects] folks built it.”
Gizmo has been to court before. Furby, an electronic plush doll, was reported to have a similarity to Gizmo. Variety reports that Hasbro paid Warner Bros. a seven-figure sum in 1998 and agreed to bury it.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the filmmaker stated that Gizmo is more than an inspiration for Baby Yoda. However, he does not plan to sue.