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"Negola dewaghi wool dugger?"
"He doesn't like you."
―Ponda Baba and Evazan, to Luke Skywalker — Gnome-speakernotesListen (file info)[src]

Ponda Baba was a male Aqualish thug who rescued Dr. Cornelius Evazan from a bounty hunter. The two formed a partnership and began to smuggle spice for the crime lord Jabba the Hutt, resulting in him becoming a wanted man. Shortly before the Battle of Yavin, he was a patron in Chalmun's Cantina on the planet Tatooine, where he instigated an argument with Luke Skywalker while bored and drunk. Evazan claimed that Baba did not like Skywalker and began to threaten the youth, leading to a brief confrontation with Obi-Wan Kenobi, who, after failing to calm tensions with the pirates, used his lightsaber to sever Baba's right arm and wound Evazan with a slash across the torso when the pair drew their blaster pistols on the old man, who was in secret one of the last remaining Jedi Masters of the nearly extinct Jedi Order. Evazan later tried to reattach Baba's arm using his medical training, but ended up nearly killing the Aqualish in the process when the procedure failed.

BiographyEdit

"You just watch yourself. We're wanted men."
―Cornelius Evazan[src]

Originally from the planet Ando, Ponda Baba was a burly Aqualish thug who rescued Cornelius Evazan, a former doctor who was infamous for the cruelty he inflicted upon his patients, from a bounty hunter. The two formed a partnership and began to smuggle spice for Jabba the Hutt. The pirates[1] were successful at their trade[4] and became wanted men.[2] Their working relationship wasn't always pleasant, however, and Baba even briefly considered turning Evazan in to collect the bounty on his head before realizing that their ongoing partnership was more profitable.[4] Still, the two considered each other friends[5][3] despite their differences.[4]

PondaEvazan

Cornelius Evazan and Ponda Baba on Jedha.

The pair eventually adopted the aliases "Roofoo" and "Sawkee", and when visiting Milvayne, they committed a series of crimes including kidnapping, forced servitude, a surgical alteration. The Milvayne Authority officer Tam Posla looked into their case and despite being taken off it by his superior officer he managed to track them to Jedha, where the two began creating the decraniated.[6] Posla travelled to Jedha to look for them and found their decraniated prototype Caysin Bog, whom he fell in love with.[7] While on their way off-world,[8] Baba and Evazan bumped into the rebel operatives Jyn Erso and Cassian Andor. Evazan told them to watch themselves and Andor said they would be careful. The two parties then continued their routes.[9] Baba and Evazan departed[8] from the city prior to its destruction by the Death Star[9] and treaveled to the planet Tatooine.[2]

Bar fight

Baba and Evazan are confronted by Obi-wan Kenobi

Prior to the Battle of Yavin, Baba and Evazan were patrons at Chalmun's Cantina on Tatooine.[2] Bored and looking for excitement,[3] a drunk Baba[1] decided to pick a fight with Luke Skywalker,[3] a young farmboy. Evazan quickly escalated the argument, even beginning to threaten the boy before attracting the attention of Obi-Wan Kenobi, Skywalker's guardian.[2] The hermit attempted to ease tensions[10] by offering to purchase the pair drinks, but Evazan refused to back down and tossed Skywalker out of his way, and, along with Baba, drew his blaster pistol on the old man, despite the protest of Wuher, the cantina's bartender. Before the pirates were even able to discharge their weapons, however, Kenobi had already ignited his lightsaber,[2] swiftly removing Baba's right arm and wounding Evazan with a slash across his torso, decisively ending the argument.[3]

Following the altercation, those present in the cantina briefly turned to see what had transpired before returning to their business. However, a departing patron, Garouf Lafoe,[11] decided to inform a squad of Mos Eisley's sandtroopers of the attack.[10] After the troopers had entered the establishment and reached the counter, Wuher indicated to them where Kenobi and Skywalker had taken a seat, though the pair found another exit before they could be apprehended.[2] Evazan tried to reattach Baba's arm using his medical training, but ended up nearly killing the Aqualish in the process when the procedure failed.[12] Ponda would later regret bullying that 'blond human teenager.'[11]

Skywalker later recalled his encounter with Baba while he was training with his own lightsaber in the Temple of Eedit on Devaron.[13] Baba's severed arm eventually came into the hands of Posla when he continued investigating the pair. Posla put the arm in a jar and stored it on his ship.[14]

Personality and traitsEdit

Ponda Baba was a fearsome,[15] ill-tempered thug[16] who enjoyed bullying[3] those whom he considered to be an easy target.[5]

Baba was a burly male Aqualish who stood 1.85 meters tall.[3] He had gray skin, black eyes, black hair on the lower part of his face, and a pair of pink tusks.[2]

EquipmentEdit

"No blasters! No blasters!"
―Wuher, as Ponda Baba draws his blaster pistol[src]

Ponda Baba wore an orange jacket, a brown pair of pants, a black pair of boots, and a black belt with a gold buckle which had a holster attached to its left side to carry his SE-14C blaster pistol.[2]

Behind the scenesEdit

Ponda Baba first appeared in the 1977 film Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope, the first installment of the Star Wars original trilogy,[2] in which he was played by Tommy Ilsley.[17] The original 1976 novelization of Star Wars, ghostwritten by Alan Dean Foster, described the character, then nameless, as a "multi-eyed alien". This story's version of events,[18] which closely matches the film's revised fourth draft,[19] describes Obi-Wan Kenobi as cutting off not Baba's arm, rather Evazan's.[18] The Evazan character dates back as early as The Star Wars: Rough Draft from May 1974.[20]

A walrus named Petulia was used by Ben Burtt to supply Ponda Baba's vocalizations, although Tim Veekhoven and Mark Newbold, the authors of the Star Wars Blog entry "Drawing from the Present: Familiar Creatures in a Galaxy Far, Far Away", were unable confirm whether the walrus was Petulia or not.[21] Baba also appears alongside Evazan in the 2016 Anthology Series film Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and was portrayed by an uncredited performer.[9] Rogue One writer Gary Whitta disagreed with Baba and Evazan's inclusion in the film, opining that he "thought having Evazan and Walrus Man was a little too much. You have to reign in that instinct to go back and put things in just because you loved them when you were a kid".[22]

AppearancesEdit

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Wookieepedia has 14 images related to Ponda Baba.

SourcesEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Ultimate Star Wars
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 StarWars-DatabankII Ponda Baba in the Databank (backup link)
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Topps logo Star Wars: Card Trader (Card: Ponda Baba - Cantina Patron)
  5. 5.0 5.1 StarWars-DatabankII Doctor Cornelius Evazan in the Databank (backup link)
  6. Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide
  7. Doctor Aphra 18: Remastered, Part V
  8. 8.0 8.1 TwitterLogo @GaryWhitta (Gary Whitta) on Twitter "They were on their way off-world. Lucky escape, not quite so lucky later in the week." (screenshot)
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  10. 10.0 10.1 StarWars-DatabankII Mos Eisley Cantina in the Databank (backup link)
  11. 11.0 11.1 Star Wars: Complete Locations
  12. Star Wars Character Encyclopedia: Updated and Expanded
  13. The Weapon of a Jedi: A Luke Skywalker Adventure
  14. Doctor Aphra 22: The Catastrophe Con, Part III
  15. The Original Trilogy Stories
  16. Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know
  17. IMDb favicon Tommy Ilsley at the Internet Movie Database
  18. 18.0 18.1 Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope novelization
  19. Star Wars: A New Hope Script at IMSDb. The Internet Movie Script Database. imsdb.com. Archived from the original on September 13, 2017. Retrieved on September 13, 2017.
  20. The Making of Star Wars: The Definitive Story Behind the Original Film
  21. Star Wars Blog "Drawing from the Present: Familiar Creatures in a Galaxy Far, Far Away," The Official Star Wars Blog
  22. [Breznican] (2017-03-24). Rogue One revisions: The TIE fighter scene, a deleted planet, and killed cameos. Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on December 3, 2017. Retrieved on December 4, 2017. ""I thought having Evazan and Walrus Man was a little too much," Whitta says. "You have to reign in that instinct to go back and put things in just because you loved them when you were a kid.""

External linksEdit