Watto

Last updated
Watto
Star Wars character
Watto EPI TPM.png
Watto as he appears in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace.
First appearance The Phantom Menace (1999)
Last appearance Droid Tales
(2015)
Created by George Lucas
Voiced by
Information
GenderMale
OccupationJunk store proprietor

Watto is a fictional character in the Star Wars franchise, featured in the films The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones . He is computer-generated and is voiced by voice actor Andy Secombe. He is a mean-tempered, greedy Toydarian, and owner of a second-hand goods store in Mos Espa on the planet Tatooine. Among Watto's belongings are the slaves Shmi Skywalker and her son, Anakin. He acquires them after winning a podracing bet with Gardulla the Hutt, and he puts them both to work in his store. Anakin demonstrates an incredible aptitude for equipment repair, and Watto decides to profit from it by having the boy fix various broken equipment in the store. He eventually loses Anakin in a podracing bet with Qui-Gon Jinn when he bets on a competitor, Sebulba, who is defeated by Anakin.

<i>Star Wars</i> Epic science fantasy space opera franchise

Star Wars is an American epic space-opera media franchise created by George Lucas. The franchise began with the eponymous 1977 film and quickly became a worldwide pop-culture phenomenon. The original film, later subtitled Episode IV – A New Hope, was followed by the sequels Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back (1980) and Episode VI – Return of the Jedi (1983), forming what is collectively referred to as the original trilogy. A prequel trilogy was later released, consisting of Episode I – The Phantom Menace (1999), Episode II – Attack of the Clones (2002) and Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005). Years later, a sequel trilogy began with Episode VII – The Force Awakens (2015), continued with Episode VIII – The Last Jedi (2017), and will conclude with Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker (2019). The first eight films were nominated for Academy Awards and were commercially successful. Together with the theatrical anthology films Rogue One (2016) and Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018), the combined box office revenue of the films equates to over US$9 billion, and is currently the second-highest-grossing film franchise.

<i>Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace</i> 1999 American epic space-opera film directed by George Lucas

Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace is a 1999 American epic space-opera film written and directed by George Lucas, produced by Lucasfilm, and distributed by 20th Century Fox. It is the first installment in the Star Wars prequel trilogy and stars Liam Neeson, Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman, Jake Lloyd, Ian McDiarmid, Anthony Daniels, Kenny Baker, Pernilla August, and Frank Oz. It is the first film in the nine-part 'Skywalker saga'.

<i>Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones</i> 2002 American epic space-opera film directed by George Lucas

Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones is a 2002 American epic space-opera film directed by George Lucas and written by Lucas and Jonathan Hales. It is the second installment of the Star Wars prequel trilogy, and stars Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman, Hayden Christensen, Ian McDiarmid, Samuel L. Jackson, Christopher Lee, Anthony Daniels, Kenny Baker, and Frank Oz. It is the second film in the nine-part 'Skywalker saga'.

Contents

Concept and creation

Initial designs for Watto were of a more bird-like nature, including plumage and a beak. Another design included tentacles and a cigar. Watto's face originated in an early Neimoidian picture by design director Doug Chiang. The hooked trunk and crooked teeth were carried over to the Toydarian design. Animation supervisor Rob Coleman realized that the alien's dental work would need some modification when the time came to create Watto on screen, as Watto's craggy teeth made lip-syncing difficult. To solve the problem, Coleman broke off one of Watto's incisors, giving him a "corner-of-the-mouth" vernacular.[ citation needed ] The sound of his wings flapping is a looped recording of sound designer Ben Burtt opening and closing an umbrella.

Doug Chiang is a Taiwanese-American film designer and artist. He currently serves as vice president and executive creative director of Lucasfilm.

Rob Coleman is a Canadian animation director who works with award-winning Australian visual effects and animation studio, Animal Logic. He joined Animal Logic in 2012 as the studio’s Head of Animation. Coleman is a two-time Oscar nominee for his animation work on Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace and Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones and has been nominated for two BAFTA Awards for his work on Men in Black and Star Wars: The Phantom Menace.

Appearances

Watto first appears in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace , the first title chronologically in the Star Wars series. He has both an ability for haggling and a resistance to the "Jedi mind trick", a technique used to persuade people. He is both a junk dealer and slave owner on the planet Tatooine, possessing both Shmi Skywalker and her son Anakin. When challenged to a bet for Anakin's freedom by Qui-Gon Jinn, Watto agrees. After Anakin beats Sebulba, a competing racer that he challenged throughout the race he participated in, he was let go. Watto makes a final appearance in the sequel Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones , which takes place 10 years after the original film, the now-adult Anakin returns to Tatooine to find his mother. Searching Mos Espa, he finds Watto sitting outside the shop at a small stall. Watto tells Anakin that he sold Shmi some years ago to a moisture farmer named Cliegg Lars who freed and married her. Watto then takes Anakin and Padmé to look through his records to find her.

Tatooine fictional planet in Star Wars

Tatooine is a fictional desert planet that appears in the Star Wars space-opera franchise. It is a beige-colored, desolate world orbiting a pair of binary stars, and inhabited by human settlers and a variety of other life forms. The planet was first seen in the original 1977 film Star Wars, and has to date featured in a total of six Star Wars theatrical films.

Qui-Gon Jinn Character in Star Wars

Qui-Gon Jinn is a fictional character in the Star Wars franchise, portrayed by Liam Neeson as one of the main protagonists of the 1999 film Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace.

Padmé Amidala fictional character in the Star Wars universe

Padmé Amidala is a fictional character in the Star Wars franchise, appearing in the prequel trilogy portrayed by Natalie Portman. She served as the Queen of Naboo, and after her reign, became a senator and an anti-war spokesperson in the Galactic Senate. She was secretly married to the Jedi Anakin Skywalker, and was the biological mother of Luke Skywalker and Leia Organa.

Watto makes multiple further appearances in the Star Wars Expanded Universe; one such appearance details his time on his home planet before he came to Tatooine during a war. It also tells how he sustained his broken tusk and disabled leg. He later learns his business savvy from the Jawas, native to the planet Tatooine. In the non-canonical Star Wars comic book Star Wars: Visionaries, Watto is shown to have been killed by Darth Maul (whose appearance here predates the canonical revelation of his survival of the events of The Phantom Menace) during Maul's process of tracking down his nemesis Obi-Wan Kenobi, to gain vengeance for his defeat during the Battle of Naboo.

Darth Maul Star Wars character

Darth Maul is a fictional character in the Star Wars franchise. Trained as Darth Sidious's first apprentice, he serves as a Sith Lord and master of wielding a double-bladed lightsaber. He first appears in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. Despite his apparent demise in that film at the hands of Obi-Wan Kenobi, he later returned in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated television series and made further appearances in the Star Wars Rebels series and the 2018 film Solo: A Star Wars Story, all voiced by Sam Witwer.

Obi-Wan Kenobi Character in Star Wars

Obi-Wan Kenobi, also known as Ben Kenobi, is a character in the Star Wars franchise. Within the original trilogy he is portrayed by English actor Alec Guinness, while in the prequel trilogy a younger version of the character is portrayed by Scottish actor Ewan McGregor. In the original trilogy, he is a mentor to Luke Skywalker, to whom he introduces the ways of the Jedi. In the prequel trilogy, set decades earlier, he is a teacher and friend to Luke’s father Anakin, who eventually falls to the dark side of the Force and becomes Darth Vader. He is frequently featured as a main character in various other Star Wars media.

His son Blatto makes an appearance in the non-canonical television special Phineas and Ferb: Star Wars .

<i>Phineas and Ferb: Star Wars</i> 24th episode of the fourth season of Phineas and Ferb

Phineas and Ferb: Star Wars is a 1-hour long crossover episode of the American animated series Phineas and Ferb featuring characters from Star Wars. It aired on July 26, 2014, on Disney Channel and later on Disney XD on August 4, 2014. The story, while non-canonical, is a retelling of the 1977 film Star Wars in the style of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, where the Phineas and Ferb characters interact with the Star Wars characters.

Watto has also been produced as a Lego figure and featured in the Lego Star Wars video games, in addition to numerous other appearances in the form of collectibles and other merchandising.

Lego Plastic construction toy

Lego is a line of plastic construction toys that are manufactured by The Lego Group, a privately held company based in Billund, Denmark. The company's flagship product, Lego, consists of colourful interlocking plastic bricks accompanying an array of gears, figurines called minifigures, and various other parts. Lego pieces can be assembled and connected in many ways to construct objects, including vehicles, buildings, and working robots. Anything constructed can be taken apart again, and the pieces reused to make new things.

Lego Star Wars is a Lego theme that incorporates the Star Wars saga. Originally it was only licensed from 1999–2008, but the Lego Group extended the license with Lucasfilm Ltd. multiple times: first until 2011, then until 2016, then again until 2022.

Reception

Editors for IGN ranked Watto 78th in their list of Top 100 Star Wars characters. They wrote that he was "one of the most confusing scientific anomalies" due to "the idea that a creature so potbellied is able to stay afloat for so long". They added that he was "no prince" for his unscrupulous deals. [1] In the book The Holy Family and Its Legacy, author Albrecht Koschorke discusses the presence of "The Holy Family" in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace , stating that while there was no "solicitous guardian watching over the mother and the holy child," Watto acts in a similar position as a "man who possesses patriarchal powers without being the father." [2]

Allegations of antisemitism

It has been suggested that this character is offensive because he resembles a stereotypical Jew: [3] he has a large hooked nose, beady eyes, speaks in a gravelly voice, and is portrayed as greedy and covetous. In his second appearance, he also wears a round black hat resembling a kippah. J. Hoberman of The Village Voice called him "the most blatant ethnic stereotype" due to his hooked nose. [4] Bruce Gottlieb of Slate magazine criticized him as well, comparing his character to the antisemitic notion that the Jewish race is "behind the slave trade". [5] Patricia J. Williams of The Nation stated that Watto was also described as a stereotype of Arabs, but that he was "more comprehensively anti-Semitic—both anti-Arab and anti-Jew." [6] She added that Watto reminded her of an "anti-Semitic caricature published in Vienna at the turn of the 20th century." [2] Jane Prettyman of the American Review noted that after leaving the theater, she heard two young boys describe him as "that weird little Jew guy with wings". Prettyman described his depiction as "not at all subtle", and said that "it can be counted on to flush out already-formed Jew-haters among young audiences and give them permission to continue their hatred out loud." [7] Looking back on the character on the twentieth anniversary of the film, essayist Aaron Freedman both acknowledges the stereotypical aspects of the character while admitting that as a boy he empathized with Watto as "the only representation we Jews get in the Star Wars franchise," suggesting that the portrayal of Watto as struggling to survive in a society shaped by forces beyond his control echoed that of both Jews throughout history and the Shakespearean character Shylock. [8]

Crazy Watto fan film

Crazy Watto
CW Poster Large.jpg
Directed by John E. Hudgens
Produced byJohn E. Hudgens
Written byJohn E. Hudgens
Sandy Clark
Lowell Cunningham
Heather Harris
StarringSandy Clark
Distributed byZ-Team Productions
Atomfilms
Release date
  • 2000 (2000)
Running time
2 min.
LanguageEnglish

Crazy Watto is a two-minute-long fan film that made its debut on the internet in 2000. The film is a spoof of used car deal ads shown on television, [9] featuring Watto from Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace . Watto offers up for sale familiar ships (and objects) such as an X-wing with "genuine battle marks used in the Battle of Yavin" for $599.99 and an AT-AT for $999.99. Fans of other sci-fi shows notice that he auctions a Borg cube for $899.99, and also puts up ships from Star Trek and Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future [10] for $29.99 each.

The film played at the 2005 Cannes Film Festival, [11] and is a popular fan film at many science fiction conventions. The film was originally hosted by TheForce.Net, [12] but is now part of The Official Star Wars Fan Film Awards on AtomFilms.

Related Research Articles

Darth Vader fictional character in the Star Wars franchise

Darth Vader is a fictional character in the Star Wars franchise. He is a primary antagonist in the original trilogy, but, as Anakin Skywalker, is the main protagonist of the prequel trilogy. Star Wars creator George Lucas has collectively referred to the first six episodic films of the franchise as "the tragedy of Darth Vader".

C-3PO Robot character from the Star Wars universe

C-3PO or See-Threepio is a humanoid robot character from the Star Wars franchise who appears in the original trilogy, the prequel trilogy and the sequel trilogy. Built by Anakin Skywalker, C-3PO was designed as a protocol droid intended to assist in etiquette, customs, and translation, boasting that he is "fluent in over six million forms of communication". Along with his astromech droid counterpart and friend R2-D2, C-3PO provides comic relief within the narrative structure of the films, and serves as a foil. Anthony Daniels has portrayed the character in ten of eleven Star Wars cinematic films released to date, including Rogue One and the animated The Clone Wars. C-3PO and R2-D2 are the only characters to appear in all of the films except Solo: A Star Wars Story.

The Skywalker family is a fictional family in the Star Wars franchise. Within the series' fictional universe, the Skywalkers are presented as a bloodline with strong inherent capabilities related to the Force. Luke Skywalker, his twin sister Princess Leia, and their father Darth Vader are central characters in the original Star Wars film trilogy. Darth Vader, in his previous identity as Anakin Skywalker, is a lead character in the prequel film trilogy. Leia and Han Solo's son, and also Luke's nephew, Kylo Ren plays a crucial role in the sequel trilogy of films.

Tusken Raiders fictional creatures in the Star Wars universe

Tusken Raiders are fictional creatures in the Star Wars universe. They are characterized as a nomadic warrior race who live on the planet Tatooine.

Sandcrawler type of vehicle in the Star Wars Expanded Universe

The sandcrawler is a fictional transport vehicle in the Star Wars universe that is found on the desert planet Tatooine. The vehicle, as it appears in its major appearances in Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, is 37 meters long and 18 meters tall. Only a 27 meter length of its lower hull was constructed as a set for the film. Other appearances were simulated with matte paintings and a remote-controlled model.

Hutt (<i>Star Wars</i>) species in Star Wars

The Hutts are a fictional alien species in the Star Wars franchise. Hutts are rotund, voracious and grotesque-looking slug-like creatures with a predisposition to being involved as leaders in organized crime. The most famous Hutt and the first to be depicted, from whose design template that later used for other members of the race is derived, is Jabba the Hutt, who appears in the films Return of the Jedi, the Special Edition release of A New Hope, and The Phantom Menace. Both Jabba and numerous other Hutts additionally feature in various works of the Star Wars expanded universe, which greatly elaborates on their kind's history, culture and role in galactic society at large.

<i>Crazy Watto</i> 2000 film by John E. Hudgens

Crazy Watto is a two-minute-long fan film that made its debut on the internet in 2000. The film is a spoof of used car deal ads shown on television, featuring Watto from Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. Watto offers up for sale familiar ships such as an X-wing with "genuine battle marks used in the Battle of Yavin" for $599.99 and an AT-AT for $999.99. Fans of other sci-fi shows notice that he auctions a Borg cube for $899.99, and also puts up ships from Star Trek and Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future for $29.99 each.

The Star Wars prequel trilogy is a set of three prequel films in the Star Wars franchise, an American space opera created by George Lucas. It was produced by Lucasfilm Ltd. and distributed by 20th Century Fox. The trilogy consists of Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace (1999), Episode II – Attack of the Clones (2002), and Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005). The first two films received mixed reviews, while the third film received positive reviews. Though it was produced after the original Star Wars trilogy, it serves as the first act of the 'Skywalker saga'.

Jedi Quest is an eleven-book series written by Jude Watson about Obi-Wan Kenobi, his apprentice Anakin Skywalker, and the events that take place in the fictional Star Wars expanded universe between Episode I: The Phantom Menace and Episode II: Attack of the Clones,. More than three years of preparatory training are alluded to before Anakin builds his first lightsaber, as recounted in the introductory novel, Path to Truth. The series was published from 2001 to 2004.

<i>Star Wars Racer Revenge</i> 2002 video game

Star Wars Racer Revenge is a Star Wars video game that involves high-speed podracing. It is the sequel to Star Wars Episode I: Racer, and was developed by Rainbow Studios and published by LucasArts. It was released in 2002 exclusively for the PlayStation 2, and was later added to the PlayStation Store for the PlayStation 4 on 15 January 2016.

<i>Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace</i> (novel) 1999 novel

The Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace novelization was written by Terry Brooks and published on April 21, 1999, by Del Rey. It is based on the script of the film of the same name and released with multiple covers, including Darth Maul, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker and Queen Amidala.

<i>Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace</i> (soundtrack) 1999 film score by John Williams

Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack is the film score to the 1999 film of the same name, composed and conducted by John Williams, and performed by the London Symphony Orchestra and London Voices.The soundtrack album was released by Sony Classical Records on May 4, 1999, two weeks before the film's theatrical release. In anticipation of the long-awaited film, the soundtrack was certified Platinum in the United States and Gold in the United Kingdom, where it entered the UK album charts at number eight.

<i>Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace</i> (video game) 1999 video game

Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace is an epic space fantasy action-adventure role playing video game released by LucasArts and based on the film of the same title. The game is set in several different settings seen within the film, and contains heavy RPG elements alongside its largely adventurous action-oriented game world. More open-ended than the majority of 3D games at the time, the project was notably innovative for its decade. The game is set during the timeline of the film, with players taking on the role of Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and several other characters from the film. Each playable character has a unique weapon and ability. The game also features open environments to explore at the player's leisure, and dozens of NPCs with unique dialog.

<i>Star Wars: Racer Arcade</i> video game (2000)

Star Wars: Racer Arcade is a 2000 arcade racing game developed by AM5 and LucasArts and released by Sega. It is based on the Podrace scenes in the 1999 film Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. It was unveiled at ATEI in London in 2000. It features four tracks, Tatooine (Easy) Bantha Tracks, Etti IV (Normal), Smuggler's Cove, Malastare (Hard) Pixelito Challenge has four laps and Tatooine (Expert) Boonta Eve Classic has three laps. Four Podracer pilots are available for play, including Anakin Skywalker, Ben Quadinaros, Gasgano and Sebulba. The player controls the podracer via two handheld throttle controls, similar to how pods are controlled in the film. Unlike the home console video game Star Wars Episode I: Racer, the player's podracer is indestructible, although it can suffer slowdown from collision damage, and it is possible, yet difficult to destroy opposing podracers. It was available in multiple configurations, one of which was a twin type; two individual games joined in the center. It was the final Star Wars game developed by Sega. The deluxe cabinet featured a 50" screen and was molded to appear like the cockpit of Anakin Skywalker's podracer. Up to four cabinets could be linked for multiplayer. Kotaku's Lewis Packwood called the "fancier, beefier version of Episode I: Racer."

References

  1. "Watto". IGN Entertainment, Inc. Archived from the original on 15 August 2010. Retrieved 18 May 2011.
  2. 1 2 Koschorke, Albrecht (2003). The Holy Family and Its Legacy: Religious Imagination from the Gospels to Star Wars. Translated by Dunlap, Thomas. Columbia University Press. p. 183. ISBN   9780231127561 . Retrieved 27 February 2015.
  3. Brayton, Rebecca. "Top 10 Racially Offensive Movie Characters". Watch Mojo . Retrieved 9 October 2005.
  4. Hoberman, J. (May 19–25, 1999). "All Droid Up". The Village Voice . Archived from the original on 9 July 2016. Retrieved 25 February 2016.
  5. Gottlieb, Bruce (May 27, 1999). "The Merchant of Menace". Slate . Archived from the original on 30 October 2005. Retrieved 11 June 2006.
  6. Williams, Patricia J. (June 17, 1999). "Racial Ventriloquism". The Nation . Retrieved July 26, 2016.
  7. Prettyman, Jane (June 3, 1999). "George Lucas serves up anti-Semitic stereotype in Star Wars Episode I". American Review . Archived from the original on May 12, 2006. Retrieved 11 June 2006.
  8. Freedman, Aaron (June 14, 2019). "If You Prick Watto, Does He Not Bleed?". Jewish Currents . Retrieved June 14, 2019.
  9. Pickle, Betsy (May 16, 2005). "'Crazy Watto' striking deals at Cannes". Knoxville News Sentinel. Archived from the original on August 28, 2010. Retrieved July 9, 2019.
  10. ""CRAZY WATTO" review". RunLeiaRun.com. February 23, 2003. Retrieved July 9, 2019.
  11. Ball, Ryan (May 12, 2005). "Star Wars Fans to Play Cannes". Animation Magazine . Retrieved July 9, 2019.
  12. "TFN FanFilms - Short Films - Crazy Watto". TheForce.Net . Retrieved July 9, 2019.