Star Wars Designer Details How Snoke Was Originally Planned as Female


One of the elements from Star Wars: The Force Awakens that fueled speculation and arguments for years, and still continues to do so, was the mysterious Supreme Leader Snoke. The secret leader of the First Order only appeared via hologram in 2015's "Episode VII," but countless designs and versions of him had to be designed ahead of production so a consistent look could be used across the franchise. While speaking in a new interview though, Creature designer and sculptor Ivan Manzella revealed some details about the earliest version of the character which would have made things very different.

"I think initially when they spoke about her, she was female," Manzella said on the Force Material podcast. "Because the first image I did I based on a female, but then that just very quickly went away. So either it was just in passing or (something. But I think I just did one image and that was it, and no one else did anymore. I don't know if anyone did really, then from then on it just became the male."

He went on to talk about how the initial designs for the character were put together and how he personally considered the origins of Snoke, specifically how they tried to make him different from The Emperor.

"You won't want ot make him like the Emperor again," he said. "That does sort of pop into your head. I'd done quite a few illustrations, I did quite a lot actually, different illustrations of him some with like mechanical bits to keep him alive a bit. Not like a respirator, but like breathing bits and tubes. One of the images was a tube coming out of his nose I guess kind of keeping him alive. There was quite a few drawings and I did quite a few little maquette heads... I guess he kind of just looks like an old man. But as we did the maquette we just went quite gross and sort of deformed and stuff like that."

Manzella also spoke about how he didn't consider the backstory for the character at all while designing him, which ended up being an incredibly ironic considering where Snoke ended up, floating in a jar in The Emperor's secret base.


"Not really because I guess from the script it didn't really give you much to go on. Really all I had was like a Hammer ghoul type character, so you didn't really have much to go on. So I didn't really think about what he was because I didn't have enough information, I mean no one did right? So no, not really, no backstory, so just tried to come up with something that wasn't The Emperor I guess."

Famous last words!