The Most Beloved Movie and TV Characters Made Using Practical Effects 》

If you’re a movie or TV lover, you understand what a double-edged sword, CGI can be. On one hand, CGI can bring our wildest creative ideas to life. On the other hand, even really good CGI often looks like a video game cutscene. After a while, you just end up craving something real.

This is where practical effects come in. Both before and after CGI became commonplace, practical effects were used to create some of your favorite characters. Don’t believe it? Keep reading to learn which beloved movie and TV characters own their existence to special effects!


Ever since the Special Editions, Star Wars has been a franchise we associate largely with CGI. And the prequels took this love of CGI to the limit. But back in the day, most of Star Wars was created using practical effects, and that included creating Yoda, everybody’s favorite Jedi guru.

So for The Mandalorian, series creator Jon Favreau insisted on Grogo (or “Baby Yoda” as fans kept calling him) to be a practical effect rather than a CGI creation. But while the original Yoda was a puppet, the $5 million Grogu is kind of like a puppet robot, with the robotic effects helping him achieve those cute, puppy-dog eyes!