Luke Skywalker in The Mandalorian, a comparison between the official visual effects and a more realistic deepfake.

Deepfake YouTuber Who Put Star Wars’ CGI Luke & Tarkin to Shame Reportedly Hired by Lucasfilm

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Remember how we all got excited to see Leia at the end of Rogue One or Luke in the finale of The Mandalorian, only for the CGI involved be … kind of lacking? That might be changing for the better. MSN is reporting is reporting that Shamook, the YouTuber famous for fixing the CGI recreations used in Star Wars, has been hired by Lucasfilm.

You probably remember the video Shamook posted fixing the technology used in Rogue One to bring Tarkin and a young Carrie Fisher to life as Princess Leia. (Granted, I did cry when Leia appeared, but that was right around when Carrie Fisher died.)

They also did Luke Skywalker in The Mandalorian, of course:

IndieWire reported that Shamook would be working with LucasFilm doing what they love. “[Industrial Light and Magic is] always on the lookout for talented artists and have in fact hired the artist that goes by the online persona ‘Shamook,’” a Lucasfilm representative told IndieWire. “Over the past several years ILM has been investing in both machine learning and A.I. as a means to produce compelling visual effects work and it’s been terrific to see momentum building in this space as the technology advances.”

So what does this mean for the future of Star Wars? Well, I don’t think we’ll be getting a new actor playing Luke Skywalker any time soon. When Luke appeared to train Grogu in The Mandalorian and it was Mark Hamill “reprising” the role, I had a feeling we’d either briefly see his CGI younger self in that finale and never again, or we’d get a quick moment here and there whenever we checked in on Grogu, but that was it.

Now though, with the rumored hiring of Shamook, I do think that we might get a bit more of Luke and Grogu than we thought. Pair this with the licensed artwork that exists for San Diego Comic-Con@Home that shows Luke training Grogu, and now I think that we won’t have a new actor or a lack of Luke. I think they’re going to try to give us more of this deepfake technology in a way that looks realistic enough to support a bigger role.

I’m both happy about it and sad. I like casting younger actors to take on these roles. I loved Alden Ehrenreich as Han Solo in Solo: A Star Wars Story, and I would love if a different actor got to take a stab at playing Luke. But then, if we’re only going to get brief moments like the one in The Mandalorian, I don’t want to waste a talent on something so brief and sporadic in the series.

Hopefully, with the addition of Shamook to the team, we can start to see a change in the CGI technology used in Star Wars. I liked seeing Leia and Tarkin, but I didn’t like that they seemed dead inside. Shamook’s videos bring life back to these CGI creations, and so I can’t wait to see what it means for the future of things like The MandalorianObi-Wan Kenobi, and the other Disney+ series.

(image: Lucasfilm)

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Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh. She has multiple podcasts, normally has opinions on any bit of pop culture, and can tell you can actors entire filmography off the top of her head. Her work at the Mary Sue often includes Star Wars, Marvel, DC, movie reviews, and interviews.