What a time to be alive. What a time to be a Star Wars fan. Like 2015, it’s more about counting down the days until new Star Wars than counting down the days until Christmas. We’re at 100 days until Rogue One is released in the US, so what do we know so far?
This is due to be the first in Star Wars’ Anthology series which will also come to include the much anticipated Han Solo origin film- of which Alden Ehrenreich has just been cast as Solo. Rogue One, if I’m being honest, has a strange premise.
Set between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, our new hero Jyn leads a group of resistance fighters to steal the plans of the Death Star. It’s a strange premise because, well, we already know that they succeed, therefore the drive of the film will have to be something other than them just accomplishing their mission. However it’s setting does give good links to the original films and like The Force Awakens I am hoping that these links will make the film feel just as nostalgic in a way the prequel trilogy never did.
We’re going to be seeing how normal people take a stand against the Empire.
The central themes and feel of the film is also set to be different. Rogue One will be grittier and more ‘real’ as this group of resistance fighters apparently have no links to the Force or any Jedi. This is going to be a very different view into the Star Wars universe; other than Han Solo (and now potentially Finn) we don’t usually get a character with no Force abilities taking a central role in the narrative. We’re going to be seeing how normal people take a stand against the Empire.
That being said, I’m pretty sure we all know that one familiar character who does have Force abilities will be returning- Darth Vader. Although this film will be exploring characters who are not linked to the central Skywalker plot, we will still be seeing familiar faces which also includes Mon Mothma. Considering where in the timeline Rogue One is set, bringing back one of the most iconic villains in movie history was a bit of a no-brainer.
We don’t know just how much screentime or involvement Vader will have. We know from the beginning of A New Hope that Vader becomes involved once Leia receives the plans, but it will be exciting to see just how involved he is during the plans being stolen.
Jyn, seems like a bit of a bad-ass
Personally, I’m hoping for some serious character development in this film and shedding light on what may have happened to these characters. It would be a bit of a cop-out if they all just died retrieving these plans and that’s the reason we never see or hear of them again in the later films. Our main hero, Jyn, seems like a bit of a bad-ass with not-too-much appreciation of the rules so I’d like her to stick around. I am glad that Star Wars are incorporating more female characters into their narratives that take more of a lead role. There have always been some problematic elements to Leia and Padme; they never drove the narrative or made many decisions that affected the plot. However, steps still need to be taken to incorporate more female characters, y’know that speak to each other rather than just having the one token female.
It has been a long time coming for Star Wars to attempt a Marvel-like attack on pop culture. There are so many universes, timelines and novels, Star Wars can make a killing at the box-office with almost anything that they may release. With an increasing amount of speculation as to when our obsession with superheroes will come to an end (it’s potentially already dwindling), Star Wars may have kicked off their expanded-universe at just the right time.
Rogue One is set to be released in the US on December 16th.