What Does BB-8 Stand For?

Fans may not agree about everything regarding Disney’s many changes to the Star Wars universe, but it’s hard to argue against BB-8 being the best name for the sequel trilogy’s lovable flagship droid. Even without J.J. Abrams’ explanation, it’s easy to draw clear comparisons between BB-8’s design and a soccer ball, adding to the character’s widespread appeal. But believe it or not, the seemingly perfect name was not his initial title. 

In a 2018 interview with Endor Express, creature design and effects veteran Neal Scanlan talked about his extensive work on “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” and “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” When asked how soon he and his team conjure up names for their imaginative creations, he shared that they are initially more concerned with nailing down the personalities and designs. This was the case for BB-8, who had a surprisingly simple name at first. “BB-8, for instance, started out as Snow Girl or Globe at one time — there were four or five names for BB-8,” Scanlan said. “BB-8 didn’t come until VERY, very late, and that’s probably for very good reasons as he’s such an important character.”

It’s unlikely that a name like Snow Girl would do the droid much justice, perhaps hurting its chances of becoming a fan favorite. Let’s be glad that the Force was with J.J. Abrams and company, and they made the change. 

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