When Bad Robot tweeted this picture of J.J. Abrams hanging out with R2-D2 last week, most of us took that to mean the diminutive, attitude filled droid was definitely going to appear in Star Wars: Episode VII. We already assumed that, but it was nice to get what we thought was confirmation. It seemed like a given, but now Lucasfilm has made it officially official, swearing an unbreakable blood oath that R2 will indeed figure into the grand scheme of Episode VII. But that’s not all. Both the robot in this picture, as well as the one that will appear in the final movie, are fan made.
You probably recognized Abrams and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy in the photo, and if you’re like me, you guessed the other two dudes are random Bad Robot employees that like photobombing their boss and robots. That, however, is not the case. According to the Star Wars blog on StarWars.com, those men you see are Lee Towersy and Oliver Steeples. They belong to the R2-D2 Builders Club, which, as you may have inferred, builds models of astromech droids, models that happened to be fully functioning recreations.