New Brunswick

Star Wars BB-8 droid replica brought to life by Fredericton man

Fredericton's Cory Pacione has built his own fully operational version of a little orange and white droid called BB-8 that's featured in the new Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Cory Pacione's interest in the little robot twigged when he saw a trailer for the franchise's latest film

Fredericton Star Wars fan builds robot 1:27

With the latest Star Wars film due out in just a few weeks, a Fredericton man has created a piece of that far away galaxy that is out of this world.              

Cory Pacione has built his own fully operational version of a little orange-and-white droid called BB-8 that's featured in the new movie Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

A self-proclaimed "forever" fan, Pacione had previously built a replica of the beloved robot character R2-D2 from the original movies and even a WALL-E, the robot from the 2008 film of the same name, for his daughter.

Cory Pacione saw the BB-8 droid in the trailer for the upcoming Star Wars film and thought he could build he did. And it works! 9:01

Then he saw BB-8 in one of the upcoming Star Wars trailers a year ago.

"I was like, 'I need to build this," Pacione told CBC Radio New Brunswick's Shift.

Four magnets in each the head and body sections work together with hidden wheels to make the BB-roll around.

The BB-8 model is a hit with kids and adults alike, says creator Cory Pacione. (Lauren Bird/CBC)
A graphic designer by trade, Pacione says he's not into robotics so much as the creativity.

"But I love the finished look, like the weathering, making it look old and beat up and distressed — the more art side of it, I guess," he said.

"It's definitely nice to see him come to life."

Pacione says the Fredericton Makerspace, a non-profit group that provides space and resources for creative projects, was a "huge help." BB-8's dome body was made using their 3D printer.

Others are interested in the robot replica too. The Canadian science show Daily Planet filmed a segment last week on Pacione's creation that's due to air in the next few weeks.

He said he would like to take BB-8 to a Star Wars convention in the future and even to make hospital visits.

In the meantime, Pacione is looking forward to seeing the franchise's new movie, which will be released Dec. 18.  

"I have high expectations," he said.


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