Star Wars Buddies Plush Characters, 1997-1999
Power of the Force 2
In 1997, Kenner released a line of beanie baby like toys called "Buddies". These small plush characters were filled with plastic pellets (beans) rather than conventional soft stuffing.
Cantina Band Member
Jabba the Hutt
Early Conceptual Designs
Conceptual items were developed to pitch the idea within Kenner. These early designs included a plastic tag, which was later replaced by a cardboard tag.
The production release of the Power of the Force "Buddies" line only included droids and creatures. There were early designs of humans created for this line, however they never made it to production. The following samples represent the various developmental changes including face and clothing designs.
There were plans for a second wave of classic characters to be released at the same time as the Episode I release. This concept board offered a glimpse of these new characters including a sneak preview of the pod racer Ratts Tyerell from the upcoming film "Episode I - The Phantom's Menace". While some sample characters were created, this wave was cancelled and never made it into production.
Wave 2 Unreleased Characters
Conceptual development often begins in the form of a design presentation board. This is an example of the conceptual design board for the Stormtrooper. During the development process, the character begins to transform into the final product. While this character was never actually released for production, you can see some of the design changes along it's short journey.
In 1999, Hasbro continued the release of the Buddies line including the following Episode I characters:
Jar Jar Binks
There were plans to continue additional wave of Episode I Buddies. However, this line was cut short.
Unreleased Episode I Buddies