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"You spent seven seasons with the Circus Horrificus, training their specimens without being eaten. That's a record for them, you know."
Bib Fortuna[src]

Malakili was a male Human from the Core World of Corellia, a creature tamer and servant of the Hutt gangster Jabba Desilijic Tiure on Tatooine. Malakili took care of Jabba's rancor.


Early lifeEdit

A Human male, Malakili was born on Corellia,[1] a planet of the Core Worlds best known for its pirates, its fast starships, and skilled merchants.[3] Since his most tender childhood, the young Malakili was fascinated by wild animals, and he wished he could dedicate his life to taking care of them.[4] By 32 BBY, the Corellian became involved with Gargonn the Hutt's Circus Horrificus,[5] a travelling menagerie that displayed monstrous creatures throughout the galaxy, for which he became a professional beast handler and monster trainer. Quickly, it became obvious that Malakili's touch was inimitable. Only he knew how to tend the circus' restless beasts while avoiding undue risk. Aside from the bloodthirsty creatures themselves, Malakili became the true star of the Circus Horrificus.[6]

Incident on Nar ShaddaaEdit

"An illegal performance by the underground Circus Horrificus ended in chaos yesterday in the lower levels of Nar Shaddaa as a new, exotic beast showcased by the traveling troupe escaped and ran amuck."
―Extract from a HoloNet News report[src]

Despite the Corellian's unequalled skills, accidents remained possible. In the fourth month of 22 BBY, an unexpected event took place while the menagerie was performing in the Ko Hentota district of Nar Shaddaa. One of the wrangler's beasts, an aggressive arqet, got rid of its restraints and attacked the spectators, killing twelve in the process. The Corellian attempted to stun the arquet, but to no avail. While the murderous creature crawled into the district's ventilation grid, Malakili and the other surviving members of the Circus vacated the premises.[7]

Slave of the HuttEdit

"I think this is a rancor. I have heard of them, but never dreamed that I would be lucky enough to see one in my lifetime."
―Malakili to Bib Fortuna[src]

Like many of the Hutt's employees, Malakili had to suffer humiliations from Jabba.

Following that incident, Malakili was sold by the Circus Horrificus to Jabba Desilijic Tiure,[6] a Hutt crime lord and shipping magnate in the Outer Rim Territories.[8] Although his contract file mentioned that he was "transferred," the Corellian knew that he had been purchased like a slave and would be left at the mercy of Jabba, probably for the rest of his life. Nonetheless, the wrangler was mild-mannered and friendly with many of Jabba's crowd, such as Porcellus and J'Quille. He viewed the rancor as a kindhearted creature and a friend. At one point, the bloodthirsty gamblers demanded more violence. So Jabba ordered Malakili to train the rancor for battle, and had a special weapon harness built.[6] Malakili fitted the rancor with the weapons harness and entered his master's dangerous demolition derby.[9] Malakili and his mount, however, did not emerge victorious in the contest. As a cruel punishment, the wrangler was forced to endure humiliation by Salacious B. Crumb, Jabba's court jester, who sat on his shoulders dancing and giggling madly in front of the whole court.[10] Nevertheless, Malakili forged a close bond with the rancor, such that the creature would allow him to treat its wounds and eat meals with it.[6]

At some point during his time on Tatooine, Malakili killed a giant mutated womp rat that had taken over a cave owned by Tusken Raiders, and got a gaderffii stick as a gift from them.

He was planning on betraying Jabba to Lady Valarian and leaving with the rancor because Jabba planned on pitting it against a Krayt dragon, which would surely kill it. He even hid a camera for her in Jabba's throne room. When Gonar threatened to blackmail Malakili with evidence of the planned betrayal, Malakili murdered him and fed the body to the rancor.

When the rancor was killed by Luke Skywalker, he could be seen to weep painfully. His assistant Giran, despite not being fond of the rancor, attempted to comfort him. After Jabba's death at the Great Pit of Carkoon, Malakili broke the cook, Porcellus, out of Jabba's dungeon, and they went on to found a restaurant in Mos Eisley called the Crystal Moon Restaurant.[11][1]

Personality and traitsEdit


Malakili employed by Circus Horrificus in 32 BBY

A large Human, Malakili was muscular from wrestling against monsters and lifting heavy objects. However, his star status at the Circus Horrificus came with its feasts of plentiful food, and Malakili's belly had grown large and fat. The wrangler, however, did not care much for his physical appearance. He was not interested in impressing any sentient being and only wanted his monsters to hold him in respect. He usually wore a simple loincloth and a draped black headdress.[6]

Behind the scenesEdit

"I like the idea that everyone loves someone. And even the worst, most horrible monster you can imagine was loved by his keeper. And the rancor probably loved his keeper."
George Lucas[src]

Malakili first appeared in Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi, the third installment of the original trilogy. He was portrayed by an uncredited Paul Brooke, but his sobs were provided by Ernie Fosselius.

In 2000, Malakili was voiced by Jess Harnell in the video game Star Wars: Demolition. In that game, there were two possible endings for Malakili: either he won Jabba's demolition derby or he lost it. The "losing cutscene" showed the wrangler being humiliated by Jabba and Salacious B. Crumb. If he did win, a cutscene showed Lyn Me being eaten by the rancor as a reward. However, Lyn Me was still alive during the events of Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, which occurred shortly after those of Demolition. Therefore, it can be concluded that Malakili did not win the demolition games, hence making his "losing cutscene" canon.

The Ewok Handler's model in Star Wars: Empire at War: Forces of Corruption is actually that of Malakili, but no mention is made of him in the game.


Non-canon appearancesEdit


Notes and referencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 Star Wars Character Encyclopedia
  2. The Official Star Wars Fact File 114
  3. A Guide to the Star Wars Universe, Second Edition
  4. The Official Star Wars Fact File 114 (RAN3-4, Rancor Keeper)
  5. Star Wars: Republic 17: Emissaries to Malastare, Part 5
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 A Boy and His Monster: The Rancor Keeper's Tale
  7. HNNsmall Circus Horrificus Turns HorrificHoloNet News Vol. 531 52 (content now unavailable; backup links 1 2 on
  8. HNNsmall Zorba the Hutt Sentenced to 45 YearsHoloNet News Vol. 531 48 (content now unavailable; backup links 1 2 on
  9. Star Wars: Demolition
  10. In the video game Star Wars: Demolition, Malakili's winning cutscene had the Twi'lek dancer Lyn Me eaten by Jabba's rancor. However, the Star Wars Trilogy Sourcebook, Special Edition established that Lyn Me actually survived Jabba the Hutt, which renders the wrangler's winning cutscene non-canon. In the losing cutscene, Malakili was humiliated by Jabba and Salacious B. Crumb for being defeated.
  11. Epilogue: Whatever Became Of...?

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