Fans of Willow have four brand-new collectibles to buy thanks to Funko Pop! and associate designer Kaysi Smith. For those unfamiliar with the film, it’s a 1988 fantasy movie that was directed by Ron Howard. The story for the film hailed from George Lucas, the creator of Star Wars, though the script was written by Bob Dolman. A sequel series, created by Jonathan Kasdan, was released on Disney+ 34 years later, but not for long.
Smith said in an interview with Lucasfilm:
“As a fan of Willow, I was excited to be able to take part in turning these characters into Funko POP!s. Willow was something I grew up with, and being able to tap into that nostalgia and look at the film with a critical lens was very cool. You get to find a lot of details in the film that you don’t normally look for. I love trying to apply those details as much as possible to each figure to help really personalize them.”
One of the figurines is Willow, of course, played by Warwick Davis in both the movie and its sequel series. Willow is a Nelwyn farmer and aspiring sorcerer. His Pop! figurine can be seen holding Elora Danan, a Dinkini baby and chosen one who Willow gets put in charge of protecting from the forces of evil. She would later return in the Disney+ sequel with a much bigger role.
“I designed Willow and Elora first in the set. I thought it was paramount that we include Elora, and this was the clearest way to make sure that happens. From there I wanted to ensure that the cast complemented the pair. I strive to push POP! personalities with dynamic poses as often as I can. Willow is so action-packed and surrounded by strong characters it was natural to want to show that off.”
Who Else Is There?
Besides Willow there’s Madmartigan (Val Kilmer) is a swordsman who assists Willow on his quest to protect Elora. He’s wearing the golden armor he wears for the final battle. Besides that, he also has a romantic subplot where he ends up falling in love with one of the agents pursuing them. Outside of archive footage, Kilmer didn’t return as Madmartigan in the Disney+ series, though his son Jack Kilmer voiced the character in two separate episodes.
“Designing the base was an incredibly fun part of the process. This was a chance to pull in the environment, which we don’t always get to do with POP!s. I finally ended up choosing to pull elements from the final castle scene. Something that resonated with me the most was those thick bricks with unusual moss grown into it.”
Then there’s Sorsha (Joanne Whalley), a princess who’s been tasked by her mother, Queen Bavmorda (Jean Marsh), with locating Elora so that she can destroy her. She’s the one Madmartigan ends up falling for and vice versa. Initially among the forces of evil, Sorsha ends up switching sides after falling in love. Sorsha would also return to the Disney+ series in a much smaller, but no less important role.
Lastly, there’s General Kael (Pat Roach), who’s the leader of Bavmorda’s army and also on the hunt for Elora. Roach, who passed away in 2004, also reappeared via archive footage in the sequel series. Mark Slaughter also played a spectre of the character, with Sam Witwer providing the voice. The character’s backstory and motivations were also expanded upon in the sequel.
“General Kael is a good example of taking something so unique and elaborate and simplifying it just enough to create a cute factor, without losing the character in the process. It was incredibly difficult to take the skull that General Kael wears and make it fit POP! form factor.”
You can watch Willow, the movie, on Disney+. Unfortunately, you can no longer watch Willow, the series, as it was one of several projects that was purged by Disney+ and Hulu. However, Kasdan remained optimistic that audiences will be able to see the show again at some point in the future. Previously, Kasdan also indicated hopes for a second season despite the show’s cancelation.