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In the new Captain Marvel film there is a cat that plays a role in the plot, named Goose.

This character is also present in the comics but is known as Chewie.

Now I don't think it is very hard to see where these names took inspiration from... Chewie from Star Wars and Goose from Top Gun. Both are a nice fit for Carol's background as a fighter pilot.

But why the change in name? Did it have something to do with the studios and naming rights; Disney owns both Marvel and Star Wars now so I don't think that should have been too much of a hassle? Was is that since the film took place between 1989 and 1995 that Top Gun was more period relevant in the film? Carol does pick up a copy of The Right Stuff in the Blockbuster store (should have been Top Gun though).

I am looking for a comment from someone on the production team (e.g. director, writer, studio exec.) for the film as to why the name was changed.

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    As a side note I thought the name Goose might foreshadow the fate of the cat, considering Goose's fate in Top Gun. Thankfully, this was not the case. – Skooba Mar 11 at 13:24
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    Just wait until Endgame when we meet Nick Fury's present-day pet, a goose named Flerken. – Paul D. Waite Mar 11 at 13:30
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    I think it was Carol being a fighter pilot that made Goose more relevant. Chewbacca is not a fighter pilot. – Paul D. Waite Mar 11 at 13:32
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    “Carol does pick up a copy of The Right Stuff in the Blockbuster store (should have been Top Gun though)?” Given that The Right Stuff is the story of test pilots, some of whom end up going to space, it seems like an even more apposite reference than Top Gun. – Paul D. Waite Mar 11 at 13:59
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    @Seneca: if we can trust Carol's jumbled memories, it seems like Doctor Lawson named Goose; who is, at the risk of spoiling the movie for you, not a cat. – Paul D. Waite Mar 11 at 15:58
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Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck have answered this during an interview with Collider. In short it appears to have been because they wanted a reference more specific to Danvers' past and something that would line up with her more specifically than Star Wars.

During a recent press day for Captain Marvel, I got the chance to sit down with directing duo Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck and posed that exact question to them. Here’s what Fleck said:

“It wasn’t a big thing. It just felt like Star Wars was so part of the culture that, it just felt like we wanted to remove it a little bit, you know, the nostalgia for the Star Wars movies which there are so many of around us. You know, when we were kids, Star Wars felt like it was something from the 70s and 80s, and I think that was the spirit of Chewie from the comics but we felt like we wanted to sort of just slide away from that slightly.”

Boden further added:

“Yeah, and just the idea of having a reference that would have been so specific to Carol Danvers’ past, as her past in the movie itself being a pilot in the 1980s when Top Gun was out and having a reference that felt a little bit more specific to her, whereas Chewie, when the comics were being written was a very specific reference in time but now with all the movies out it feels more contemporary and not so specific to her past.”

Collider, ‘Captain Marvel’ Directors Explain Why They Changed the Cat’s Name

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    This is kind of odd though, yes, the cat is in the film, but it isn't her cat. From all the promotional material, I would have thought it would be the cat she "left behind" – Baldrickk Mar 11 at 17:05
  • @Baldrickk FWIW I won't be seeing the film until some time tomorrow so can't really comment on all the ins and outs. I just provided what the directors have said :) – TheLethalCarrot Mar 11 at 17:06
  • oh, it's not a detraction of your answer, just pointing out that the cat wasn't connected to her past life at all, so any naming choice is incidental as far as the story is concerned - sorry for very minor spoilers. Enjoy the movie! – Baldrickk Mar 11 at 17:10
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    @Baldrickk: “the cat wasn't connected to her past life at all”. That's not quite true. In one of Carol's flashbacks during the memory extraction process, Goose curls around Carol's legs, causing Doctor Lawson to note that Goose likes her. – Paul D. Waite Mar 11 at 17:25

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