Last year, adorable Force Awakens droid BB-8 made his debut at Star Wars Celebration. It was love at first beep beep boop. This year, however, a very different practical-effect creature was introduced onto the Celebration stage for the very first time. His codename is Space Monkey — and he's kind of dick. (But maybe a lovable dick?)
Space Monkey will make his big-screen debut in Gareth Edwards's Rogue One, but Celebration-goers were treated to an exclusive first look at the creature on the main stage during the Star Wars Creatures, Droids & Aliens panel. "He has a name, but I’ve forgotten it," Star Wars creature shop boss Neal Scanlan said.
Since the characters in Rogue One were constantly on the move, it was imperative for the creatures to be completely agile. This contributed to Edwards's free-flowing filming process in which actors and extras were given the freedom to go where they wanted and "do the scene in a way that felt right."
Apparently, Space Monkey took Edwards's direction to heart, because he does whatever the fuck he wants. Within 30 seconds of walking onto the Celebration stage, he picked up a toy Ewok and threw it at moderator Warwick Davis.
Space Monkey gives zero fucks. Space Monkey will take your Yak Face collectable, and he will throw it on the ground while laughing maniacally.
For Scanlan, it was important to find creature actors who could cover multiple disciplines and "be able to role with whatever we throw at them" — or, with whatever Space Monkey throws at him. Honestly, Space Monkey would probably use BB-8 as a soccer ball if they ever met. Space Monkey reminds me a bit of K-2SO, the brutally honest droid voiced by Alan Tudyk in Rogue One. He's also kind of a dick. I'm sensing a theme here.
TL;DR — If you're looking for a cute 'n' cuddly creature in Rogue One to quench your BB-8 thirst, chances are they don't exist. Space Monkey is our new Star Wars overlord. We must submit to him and obey. I, for one, will gladly do so.