This guy does realise that 'Star Wars' and the character of Yoda precedes 'Gremlins', right?

Sure, they both have big ears and big eyes, and a special set of skills - but are they really that similar? Director Joe Dante says that Baby Yoda/Grogu and Gizmo from his 'Gremlins' franchise bear more than just a passing resemblance.

The director of 'Gremlins' and 'Gremlins 2: The New Batch' recently told The San Franciso Chronicle that the miniature companion who first appeared in 'The Mandalorian' is "out-and-out copied" from his pint-sized star.

He said: "I think the longevity of [the films] is really key to this one character [Gizmo], who is essentially like a baby. Which brings me, of course, to the subject of Baby Yoda, who is completely stolen and is just out-and-out copied. Shamelessly, I would think."

So, is Grogu really a rip-off of Gizmo from 'Gremlins'? Well, 'Star Wars' is older than 'Gremlins'. Yoda made his appearance in 'The Empire Strikes Back' in 1980, while 'Gremlins' hit screens in 1984. Of course, it did take 39 years for Baby Yoda/Grogu to appear on the first season of the Disney+ series, but the horror/comedy franchise was never mentioned as an influence on the character's creation.

'The Mandalorian' showrunner Jon Favreau previously stated that Steven Spielberg's 'E.T.' was an influence on the creation of The Mandalorian's cute companion. He told Deadline: "Dave [Filoni] had done a sketch of kind of a Michelangelo/E.T. moment, and that was a source of inspiration."

Let's not forget the Furby/Gremlins lawsuit from the late 90s, following the release of the cutesy fluffy toys from Hasbro. A settlement was quietly reached between the toy makers and Warner Bros, which saw Hasbro pay the film studios a seven-figure sum for the obvious likeness shared between the two furry creatures.

Right now, we're all waiting for more information about 'The Mandalorian' season three, which will continue Baby Yoda/Grogu and the bounty hunter's adventures across the galaxy. 'Andor' will be the next 'Star Wars' series to begin on Disney+ this August.