In the eyes of some fans, The Last Jedi's porgs are the most adorable addition to the galaxy far, far away, while other fans see them as nothing more than a meme-ified novelty that audiences are sure to forget. Regardless of your opinion of the residents of Ahch-To, creature designer Neal Scanlan revealed that it was "terrifying" to attempt to create animals that would be witnessed by such a passionate fan base.
"Doing the porgs, actually, was terrifying, because you have a fear that if you get it wrong, all the fans are going to hate you forever, quite frankly," Scanlan revealed to Entertainment Tonight. "It was great...as soon as we heard that there was a warm reaction to them. It's great. They are incredibly lovable. I don't mean that because it has anything to do with me, they just come across in the film [that way]."
The creatures debuted in a behind-the-scenes reel last summer at D23 and immediately caught attention all over social media. Despite the love the creatures have received in the months since their debut, Scanlan has warmer feelings for another one of the film's creatures.
"I still like, what I call, the 'sea sow' [thala-sirens]. I like that scene just because I think it's a great moment in the film," Scanlan confessed. "With Luke and with Rey and the whole thing. We shot that in Ireland, we shot that in a real location. I have lots of fond memories of shooting that sequence so when I see it in the film, somehow, I don't know...it brings back all those memories."
Actually shooting on location resulted in some unexpected complications, which ultimately resulted in the porgs' creation.
"(We) had gone to shoot this sequence on Skellig Michael, which is the real island location that stands in for Ahch-To, and that island is covered in puffins," designer Jake Lunt Davies told StarWars.com. "It's a wildlife preserve and everywhere you look there are hundreds of birds dotted around the landscape."
The abundance of the birds caused the production team to improvise.
"You physically can't get rid of them, and digitally removing them is an issue and a lot of work, so let's just roll with it, play with it," Davies pointed out. "And so I think [writer/director Rian Johnson] thought, Well, that's great, let's have our own indigenous species.'"
You can grab your copy of The Last Jedi on Digital HD on March 13th and on Blu-ray March 27th.
Which of the creatures in The Last Jedi was your favorite? Let us know in the comments below!