Gremlins Creator Reveals Abandoned Alternate Designs for Gizmo, Stripe

Joe Dante may have directed the film and Chris Columbus may have written it, but special effects [...]

Joe Dante may have directed the film and Chris Columbus may have written it, but special effects artist Chris Walas is literally credited as the "creator" of the Gremlins in the credits for the movie. Though his career also includes work on Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, David Cronenberg's remake of The Fly (the sequel for which he directed), and Frank Marshall's Arachnophobia, the Gremlins seem like the thing he's best known for to fans. To that end, Walas still spends his days still making creatures and monsters, documenting his exploits on Twitter and his official site. Recently he dug up a special Gremlins themed treat though, alternate designs!

As noticed by Bloody Disgusting, Walas revealed his "very first rough sketches" for the Mogwai of the film, noting that it was pretty clear he was influenced by real-life primates, Tarsiers. Furthermore Walas revealed a design sketch for the actual Gremlins which doesn't look all that different from what's seen on screen, but is still a marvel to behold. Walas is also no stranger to elements for Gremlins that were created and never made it into the final cut, telling Sequel Quest back in 2017:

"We built a lot of puppets that never saw the light of day. There were a number of things we tried that didn't work, especially for the walking effects. We did do a number of walking puppets for both the Mogwai and the Gremlins, but there just wasn't enough time to refine them to the level we needed to...We built a lot of the puppets specifically for a single scene, only to find that scene was cut by the time we got to filming. So there was a degree of frustration there, knowing that we had some good stuff that's would never be seen. But that really is the nature of puppets in film. You go into it knowing that not everything is going to make it into the finished film."

As Gremlins fans are well aware, the franchise is being revived in the near future but not for a third Gremlins feature film. HBO Max is producing a new animated series, Gremlins: Secrets of the Mogwai, which is set in 1920s Shanghai and will chronicle the origin story of Gremlins character Mr. Wing (Keye Luke) plus his original meeting with Gizmo. The series has already been renewed for a second season ahead of its premiere.

Gremlins star Zach Galligan recently reprised his role as Billy Peltzer for a new Mountain Dew ad too, hopefully paving the way for more Gremlins mayhem on the big screen.