BB-8, the Star Wars universe’s first ball droid, may have only been revealed in a few seconds of footage so far, but the unusual robot has already become the breakout star of The Force Awakens, months ahead of the film’s release.
Star Wars fans got their first look at BB-8 in the film’s first teaser trailer, which was released late last year. Since then, the plucky ball droid has appeared in several seconds of the highly anticipated second trailer, and while it isn’t known what role it will play in The Force Awakens, fans have already fallen in love with the robot, which finds itself at the center of the movie’s marketing campaign.
— ScreenCrush (@screencrushnews) April 20, 2015
While it took only a few days after the second trailer’s release for a fan to create a functioning copy of BB-8, as Gizmodo notes, it appears that less tech-savvy Star Wars fans will also get a chance to take home their own remote-controlled ball droid. Earlier this week, details inadvertently leaked concerning an official BB-8 Sphero toy created by Orbotix, using the same technology that animates the version appearing in the film. Though few details have been made available, it is thought that the BB-8 toy will be released around September 1, with an unconfirmed price of $150.
BB-8 will also be a noticeable presence in Disney parks in the months leading up to the release of The Force Awakens, according to Orlando Business Journal. Though it is not known exactly when BB-8 will roll out to the parks, it has been speculated that the character may be part of Disney’s Star Wars Weekends, scheduled to begin in the next few weeks at Hollywood Studios.
— Chase Masterson (@ChaseMasterson) April 16, 2015
Sphero reportedly began work on their BB-8 prototype at the behest of Walt Disney Co. chief Bob Iger after he saw their work, and as the Inquisitr has previously reported, it has already been viewed in public. At the opening ceremonies of Star Wars Celebration Anaheim, which was held on April 16, the BB-8 prototype joined R2-D2 and director J.J. Abrams onstage to help kick off the festivities.
With a presence in Disney’s parks and a must-have toy in the works, BB-8 looks set to be the most visible part of The Force Awakens before the new Star Wars film is released later this year.
[Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/ Getty Images]