Gentle Giant has been producing high-quality Star Wars statues and busts for years, and its current range of limited-edition collectibles spans all major Star Wars timelines including the original, prequel and sequel trilogies, as well as TV series such as The Clone Wars, Rebels and everything in between. But followers of the creed will know doubt be most interested in the manufacturer’s Mandalorian statuettes, which include fan favorites Bo-Katan and daddy Mando himself.
We were sent four pieces to review: The Mandalorian with Grogu Mini Bust, Bo-Katan Kryze Mini Bust, The Mandalorian Premier Collection Statue and The Clone Wars Bo-Katan Kryze Premier Collection Statue.
If you’re looking for a way to indulge in the Star Wars fandom, but don’t fancy putting together one of the best Lego Star Wars sets, like the 7541-thousand-piece UCS Millennium Falcon (75192), then a Gentle Giant bust or statue will look just as grand adorning your desk or mantle piece.
Star Wars Gentle Giant statues review: Range
- Huge variety of characters and Star Wars eras to choose from
- We’ve tested both Mini Busts and Premier Collection Statues
Gentle Giant’s catalogue of statues ranges from large 1:2 scale busts to 12-inch tall Jumbo Figures inspired by retro Kenner action figures. But its 1:6 Mini Busts and 1:7 statuettes make up the lion’s share of its Star Wars roster. A huge variety of characters including Ahsoka, Darth Maul and Luke Skywalker are available, but it’s The Mandalorian crew that we’ve reviewed here. There are four pieces in total, with Bo-Katan and Mando immortalized in a Mini Bust and Premier Collection Statue apiece.
Each statue is limited to a rather generous 3000 pieces and is cast, painted and numbered by hand. The numbering is featured both on the bottom of the base and on a credit-card sized collector’s card, which are nice touches. The collectibles come encased in a thick polystyrene cocoon, to mitigate breakages in transit, and the understated, yet classy, packaging is exactly what we’ve come to expect from adult Star Wars collectibles.
Each box features a photo of the statue on the front and sides (to show various angles) with a paragraph of spiel about the character in question on the back, alongside either another image of the model or a piece of artwork.
Star Wars Gentle Giant statues review: Design & build quality
The Clone Wars Bo-Katan Kryze Premier Collection Statue
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The Bo-Katan Kryze Premier Collection Statue stands apart from everything else reviewed here, because it’s not from Gentle Giant’s Mandalorian range. Instead, it’s part of its Clone Wars range. Fans of the animated television series will know it’s where Bo made her Star Wars debut and that even back then the character was voiced by Katee Sackhoff (of Battlestar Galactica fame), who would reprise the role in live action.
But rather than look exactly like the actress or The Clone Wars animated model, Gentle Giant has opted for something of a halfway house. The statue looks realistic, but stylized, and we love it! The statue stands at around 10.5in/27cm tall, with Bo-Katan leaning forward as she blasts off with her jetpack.
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The nod to the animated series means that the paint job gets away with being simple and clean, and while the jetpack thrusters might have looked a little false on a more realistic-looking model, they fit right in with The Clone Wars aesthetic.
But this model doesn’t just look good. It might be the most expensive statue here, but it’s the only one that’s customizable. You can swap Bo-Katan’s head and left arm to create three different configurations. She either has her face revealed and her helmet tucked under her arm, her helmet on while holding a blaster pistol or her helmet off while holding a blaster pistol.
A really nice attention to detail is that you can swap out the holster to contain a blaster, when she’s holding her helmet and to be empty when the blaster’s in her hand.
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The sculpt is fantastic and whereas some helmetless statues and action figures can suffer from an unwanted dose of uncanny valley, the animated vibe suits Bo-Katan’s head sculpt. The edges on each helmet are perfectly sharp and smoothly lined with a thin, silver highlight and the paint application is by far the cleanest of all of the statue’s reviewed here.
Even the base is a highlight. Its aesthetic screams Star Wars and the thruster plumes provide additional interest. The only real letdown is that our model has a bent rangefinder on the main helmet, although this is fine on the helmet tucked under Bo’s arm.
Unfortunately, this is a problem that plagues mandalorian-armored collectibles from a variety of manufacturers, but it’s certainly not enough to dissuade from what is our pick of the bunch. The Bo-Katan Kryze Premier Collection Statue is a lovely piece and a collectible worthy of the Mand’alor.
The Mandalorian Premier Collection Statue
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The Mandalorian Premier Collection Statue stands roughly 11in/28cm tall and depicts Din Djarin in battered armour, even before he was given his Beskar pauldron. While Mando is most recognisable in full Beskar plating, this statue serves as a callback to a simpler time. A time when The Mandalorian wasn’t muddied by other Star Wars series and timelines, a time when The Mandalorian was a more minimalist and altogether more mysterious affair.
There’s a lot to love about Mando’s paternal relationship with Grogu and his racy N-1 hotrod, but sometimes we can’t help but miss when it was just Mando, the Child and the Razor Crest. And this model takes us right back. This Premier Collection statuette is definitely more appealing in person than in photos, which is largely due to its inherently drab colour palette and reserved pose. But while it’s not as vibrant or dynamic as The Clone Wars Bo-Katan, it’s arguably more refined. This would make a nice addition to the understated Star Wars fan’s desk.
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The sculpt looks very authentic. On closer inspection you’ll find a few inconsistencies in comparison to the real Mandalorian suit – most notably an additional cartridge on the bandolier – but we’re really splitting wookie hairs here. The paint application is mostly very good too. There’s some nice weathering on the cape and the Beskar helmet is surprisingly shiny in person.
The paint application on the orange fingers is the untidiest part of our model and the weathering on the helmet is perhaps a little too bold, but drink in the model in its entirety and it looks very nice. The overall effect is cleaner and less gritty than the realistic Bo-Katan Mini Bust (which we’ll get to later), but that’s likely a product of the Mini Bust’s larger and more detailed scale.
This statue’s biggest problem is the long and spindly blaster rifle. It’s simply too long and too delicate to be held together by a pair of relatively weak magnets. Like the Bo-Katan statue, Mando slots into the base via two pegs. This means you must hold the base when moving the figure. Granted, this is a serious collectible for adult collectors, but statues do get knocked and as it happens, Mando’s protruding pulse blaster is particularly prone to getting knocked off…
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In fact, this happened to us on three separate occasions while photographing the model and eventually led to the weapon falling from table height and a breakage in two places. Admittedly, a good portion of the blame rests on our clumsy fingers and thumbs, but whereas most magnetic components throughout the range are protected by substantial slots that serve to hold components in place, there’s little for the joint in Mando’s left wrist to lock into and it’s therefore extremely easy to knock this delicate component off.
All of that said, so long as you’re aware of this shortcoming and are happy to place the statue somewhere safe, it’s probably going to be fine. Get beyond its fragility and this is another lovely Premier Collection statue from Gentle Giant that’s competitively priced.
The Mandalorian with Grogu Mini Bust
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Everyone’s favourite galactic parent and toddler should have been the highlight of the four statues reviewed here, but unfortunately, what lets this model down is its most appealing asset, Baby Yoda! There’s nothing wrong with Grogu’s sculpt – the way his tiny hand clasps Mando’s is positively adorable and the likeness to the real puppet is spot on. The bantha in the room is the near fluorescent-green paint used to cover the little guy’s skin. It simply isn’t close enough to the pale, pastel green seen in the television show.
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Beyond this obvious faux pas is another beautifully sculpted model. Mando’s chrome-like Beskar armor isn’t easily represented in resin, but Gentle Giant has done a good job of conveying a chrome-like finish. It’s just a shame there wasn’t a little more weathering, as well as weathering and highlights on the cape. A plus point is this statue’s robustness though. It stands roughly 5.7in/14.5cm tall, contains no separate pieces and therefore requires no assembly, so it’s the sturdiest model here.
If you can get past Grogu’s inaccurate paint job, you’ll find a nice bust. That said, apart from the additional fragility of separate pieces, the Bo-Katan Mini Bust (up next) is superior in almost every way.
Bo-Katan Kryze Mini Bust
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The Bo-Katan Kryze Mini Bust stands roughly 6.2in/16cm tall and is mostly a stunning representation of her live-action appearance in The Mandalorian. The bust comes in three separate pieces, so the only assembly that’s required is attaching the arms to the body. Relatively deep slots mean they’re not prone to falling out, but the fit isn’t exactly snug and the magnets could be stronger, so we’d suggest moving the model with great care or ideally, removing the arms beforehand.
Bo-Katan is depicted duel wielding her signature blaster pistols, head tilted forward slightly to enhance the character’s general badassery. The sculpt really is top notch and the paintwork is mostly very good too. Drink the entire bust in at once and it looks very convincing indeed. Some of the bright-silver highlights don’t quite hold up to scrutiny – thanks to the odd visible brush stroke or slightly inconsistent paint application – but this doesn’t detract from what is a very cool model on display.
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The helmet is definitely the main focal point and it’s another superb sculpt with a perfectly straight rangefinder to boot! The curvature of the grey portion on top of our model’s dome could look better, but it’s testament to the model that we’re analysing it up close.
Overall, it’s the likeness that matters and Gentle Giant really has managed to immortalise Katee Sackhoff’s badass swagger in resin. If you’re looking for a small, non-intrusive statue to adorn your living space, the Bo-Katan Kryze Mini Bust is a classy collectible and our favourite of the two busts reviewed here.
Star Wars Gentle Giant statues review: Price
- Bo-Katan Kryze Mini Bust = $120
- The Mandalorian with Grogu Mini Bust = $120
- The Mandalorian Premier Collection Statue = $150
- Bo-Katan Kryze Premier Collection Statue = $175
Gentle Giant’s statues and busts are premium collectibles, but you can certainly pay more for movie-accurate figurines. With that in mind, the company produces very good-looking ornaments at competitive prices. The Bo-Katan Kryze Mini Bust and The Mandalorian with Grogu Mini Bust both retail for $120, while the Premier Collection models’ are slightly more expensive.
The Mandalorian Premier Collection Statue has an MSRP of $150, while the Bo-Katan Premier Collection Statue will set you back slightly more at $175. Overall, this price increase feels justified, thanks to the latter’s interchangeable parts, more intricate base and more involved paint job.
Should I buy Star Wars Gentle Giant statues?
If you’re looking for a more sophisticated way to display your passion for a galaxy far, far away or you’re wanting to buy something special for a Star Wars fan who isn’t into action figures and Lego, then Gentle Giant’s statues and Mini Busts provide premium collectibles at good prices.
You’d be hard pressed to find better paint applications and more realistic sculpts without paying a considerable amount more and with the Gentle Giant Star Wars range spanning the width and breadth of the galaxy, there really is something for bounty hunters, Jedi, Rebel Scum and everyone inbetween.
The statues look very impressive from a respectable distance, with the occasional inconsistency only visible when scrutinised up close. We do wish the magnets holding pieces together were stronger, but these are strictly display pieces after all.
Grogu’s inaccurate paint job does put the Mando bust firmly behind the rest, but the other three models are all of similarly consistent quality. That said, the Bo-Katan Premier Collection really does stand out as the most aesthetically pleasing, cleanly painted and feature rich option overall.
If the Star Wars Gentle Giant statues aren’t for you
If the Gentle Giant Star Wars statues aren’t for you, or if you’re willing to spend your bounty hunting earnings on even more Star Wars collectibles, then you might like to check out Denuo Novo’s screen-accurate replica of The Mandalorian Helmet. It’s so good, you’ll wonder if it’s made of real Beskar! If that’s a little beyond your budget then Hasbro’s The Black Series Bo-Katan Helmet is an admirable replica for a fraction of the former’s price.
But if you’re looking for something other than exquisitely detailed statues and prop replicas to satisfy your galactic taste buds, you can’t go wrong with Lego’s formidable collection of Star Wars sets. The Lego Star Wars Clone Commander Cody Helmet and Inquisitor Transport Scythe both received five stars on test.