After being introduced within the series premiere of Star Wars: The Mandalorian, an adorable alien earned the nickname “Baby Yoda” after his resemblance to the long-lasting Jedi Master, though the director of the series Taika Waititi recently joked on Twitter that the character’s real name was “Nigel.” Throughout the primary season, the figure was mentioned as “The Child” by his on-screen counterparts, shrouding the character’s origins in mystery. As long as both “The Child” and “Baby Yoda” are merely nicknames for the role, it’s unclear if the young character is conscious of its actual name, though audiences could learn this detail when The Mandalorian returns for a second season this fall.
In response to a tweet about Waititi and co-creator Jon Favreau knowing the character’s actual name, Waititi joked, “I assume it is Nigel.”
These jokes come after Waititi shared that he is aware of the character’s real name, but claimed that Favreau is the one with authority to divulge it.
“He’s no longer named Baby Yoda!” Taika asserted over the weekend. “I’ll wait for Favreau to provide that away.”
Baby Yoda is only the 1/3 live-action appearance of this species, behind Yoda himself, who debuted in Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, and Yaddle, who seemed on the Jedi Council in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace. Little is recognized about the species, with even the name of the species having never been confirmed, ensuing in fans using “Baby Yoda” for shorthand.
“I think it’s handed our expectations, all of our expectations. But I knew, the moment I noticed an early cut of the first episode, that we had something without a doubt special. And I felt it,” Disney CEO Bob Iger published about the personality to The Star Wars Show. “I’ve been in the business for 45 years, labored my way up via television mostly, [and I] be aware instances during my profession in television when I noticed either a character or an actor enjoying a persona when you just knew.”
Even Iger himself couldn’t help but refer to the character with this shorthand, only to incur the ire of Favreau.
“In this particular case, The Child, or The Asset — because we don’t refer to The Child or The Asset the way the world is relating to The Child and The Asset as ‘Baby Yoda’ — that’s a no-no,” Iger joked. “I bought chastised, in my early emails to Jon Favreau, I referenced in my emails, ‘Baby Yoda.’ It merely appeared comfortable. And I bought my wrists slapped by using Jon a few times. ‘It’s not Baby Yoda!’ ‘Okay, okay!'”