For a Star Wars fan, The Mandalorian Season 2 finale was full of extremes. The undeniable climax was the reveal that Grogu’s beacon to all Jedi was heard by none other than Luke Skywalker, who came to pick up Baby Yoda and take him to be trained.
However, the joy that was felt by friends when Luke appeared was followed by confusion. Mark Hamill’s CGI de-aging looked distractingly unbelievable — especially after one fan used readily available technology to make a much better version on their own.
Now, Lucasfilm may have come up with a solution to this problem, and it accidentally reveals a huge detail about The Mandalorian Season 3.
In the days after The Mandalorian Season 2 finale, YouTuber Shamook posted a video revealing an improved version of the scene using Deepfake technology to replace the de-aged Mark Hamill with a model of his face as an actual young man. The clip was far more believable than the original and quickly went viral.
Months later, Shamook posted again. This time, the Deepfake in question replaced Christian Bale’s face in The Dark Knight with the face of Batman heir-apparent Robert Pattinson. The video included this statement in the comments:
"As some of you may already know, I joined Lucasfilms a few months ago and haven't had the time to work on any new YouTube content. Now I've settled into my job, uploads should start increasing again. Enjoy!"
Shamook later revealed they were hired as Senior Facial Capture Artist, likely using the same methods they used in the Luke Skywalker video in other Lucasfilm properties.
So what does this mean for Star Wars fans? Well, if Lucasfilm is hiring more facial capture artists, it’s clear effect will be used quite a bit in the future. Could this mean there’s a lot more Luke Skywalker in store in The Mandalorian Season 3? Possibly.
The Inverse analysis — No matter what, Star Wars fans needn’t worry about the de-aging effects being disappointing. Now the word is out that Hamill is back, there’s no need to be secretive about Luke’s appearance, and with The Mandalorian not releasing for at least a year, there’s plenty of time to perfect it.
However, it’s possible this YouTuber isn’t working on The Mandalorian at all. Lucasfilm is also working on the fifth Indiana Jones film, which is rumored to involve a lot of facial special effects. Could we see Harrison Ford get the same treatment as his old Star Wars co-star? Only time will tell.
But one thing’s for sure though: if you one-up Lucasfilm, Lucasfilm will notice. And it might just get you a job.
The Mandalorian is now streaming on Disney+.