It was clear to Star Wars fans from the very first episode of The Mandalorian that "The Child" would become a major figure in the franchise, and the world at large. Kept entirely a secret from the public until his debut on the Disney+ series, the memes and bootleg merch flooded the internet almost instantly. The creative team behind the series knew that they had something special though and it came from seeing how their own children reacted to seeing the character, or rather not seeing it, when they were still making the series and before they'd even shot a frame. Speaking on the ATX Television Festival At Home virtual panel, director Bryce Dallas Howard revealed that the hilarious shot of Baby Yoda drinking, the basis of many memes, came about because of her children.
“My kids were on set pretty much every day," Howard said (H/T Collider). "And even before we came to set, when it was the storyboards for the episode… when we were just conceiving of things, my daughter would come into the editing room and whenever Baby wasn’t on screen, she would lean over to me and be like, ‘Where’s Baby? Where’s Baby? Where’s Baby?’"
She added, "Jon [Favreau] picked up on that, like, ‘Oh yeah — if the kid is wondering where Baby is, then we need to know where Baby is at all times.’… There was something with the kids where Baby was very real and Baby was in danger and they needed to see where Baby was at all times… They needed to know Baby was safe. And from that a variety of moments came up that were constructed just because we wanted everyone to know Baby was safe.”
Favreau and Howard both spoke about how, despite both of their kids knowing about The Child, they were able to keep the character a secret. Howard "used to have a whole ritual you'd go through with the kids to help reinforce" according to Favreau with Howard adding, "I would remind my kids every day once they were going to school, 'What do we not talk about? Baby!'"
Lucky for all of us, Baby is safe and will return for the second season of The Mandalorian. This news marks the latest revelation about the character, arriving off the heels of some of the first concept art for The Child that was shown in last week's episode of Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian. Series creator Jon Favreau revealed the images, some of which were...quite horrifying.