With the newest installment of the Star Wars franchise less than three weeks away, Disney has in the recent weeks stepped up the promotional machine for standalone film. And not a moment too soon. The latest promotional announcement has Gareth Edwards, Kathleen Kennedy, Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Donnie Yen, Mads Mikkelsen, Alan Tudyk, and Riz Ahmed on Twitter Friday December 1st at 1PM EST answering questions (use #AskRogueOne) and premiering a special behind-the-scenes footage. With reports of apathy from non-hardcore fans of the space opera, the House of Mouse is looking to get the casual Star Wars fans interested in the first film not to be a part of the original saga. So far it is working since ticket pre-sales managed to crash Fandango a few times.
Side Note: I know I have fallen behind on my duties on this site and not properly geeked out over all of the promos for Rogue One released, but the holidays are a really busy time for me. I have a massive family I’m related to and I’m marrying into a not nearly as large, but still decent sized family that, somehow, I became the pseudo-matriarch for. I genuinely don’t know how it happened, but it is now my duty to organize the high holidays for my in-laws. But enough of that.
Now there are more clips and information being released about Rogue One, I find myself getting more excited. But just like The Force Awakens, I know I need to take a big breath and step back the anticipation. There is always a chance it could turn out like the prequels.
With that ever-so-disturbing thought set aside, I do have one thing I would like to see in the upcoming film and a few things I hope don’t happen. (Warning, I may just be a fan speculating on what I want to see, but there is a possibility of what I’m going to talk about can be seen as potential spoilers. Please read on with caution.)
A Satisfying Ending doesn’t always mean a Happy Ending:
Now that Walt and all his minions own the franchise, it is hard not to be concerned the film series will become Disneyfied. One of the biggest worries is Rogue One will get the “Disney Ending,” in that everyone survives and all is well by the end. I seriously doubt that will completely happen, but there is a chance the conclusion will not have the impact intended. Reports the studio were not completely on board for Edwards’ vision of the film after viewing a rough cut and reshoots took place as a result surfaced back in May. There is also a matter of the major tonal shift between the trailers. Take a look at the first teaser released back in April of this year:
It is dark and gritty with our hero, Jyn, portrayed as a dangerous outlier to the rebellion, causing trouble and engaging in needless battles with the Empire. Jyn is recruited because she is expendable and the mission is sure to be unsuccessful.
Now look at the trailer released in October:
The music featured is much more heroic in the way the original Star Wars theme feels epic, Jyn is now portrayed as a central cog in the rebellion’s plans due to her father’s involvement with designing the Death Star. She is also painted as a figure of hope, the savior in dark times, telling her fellow insurgents “rebellions are built on hope!” Gone is the defiant rebel.
The point I am getting at is stealing the Death Star plans has been painted as a suicide mission with Mon Mothma stating in both A New Hope and Return of the Jedi, many lives were lost in the pursuit of those undertakings. I expect many of the heroes in Rogue One to die in the line of fire. Possibly even Jyn and Cassian. And I’m okay with that. I want the film and the objective of this ragtag band to have emotional weight. Seeing the whole group, or even most of them, walk away would feel like a copout. It would make the Empire seem less formattable if a group of rebels can walk in and steal the plans for their greatest weapon and escape with minimal harm.
No Connections with the Skywalkers, the Solos, or the Kenobis:
For Rogue One to be a true standalone film, the characters need to be their own people, not a part of an already established legacy of the narrative. Bail Organa (played by Jimmy Smits in both the prequels and Rogue One) will be making a cameo, but this is tolerable. His daughter’s involvement with the rebellion in the original trilogy gives his appearance a pass and allows the character a proper sendoff because we all know how things end for him in A New Hope.
Those are not the Droids we are looking for:
While I have a sneaking suspicion due to a Wal-Mart ad for Star Wars toys that R2-D2 will be in Rogue One, I still have my fingers crossed the droid duo of C-3PO and his pal are not featured in the upcoming movie. They were unnecessarily shoehorned into the prequels and I truly hope the same mistake has not been made again. A small cameo by R2-D2 would be given somewhat of a pass since he is the one tapped to deliver the Death Star plans to Obi Wan in A New Hope.
While the Force is a large part of the Star Wars legacy, not every movie in the series needs to have someone who is force sensitive. Many people worship God or a specific Deity, but religious leaders are not featured characters of every movie. It is okay to acknowledge the Force, but not have any Jedi. Please, please, please don’t let the third act reveal Jyn is a Jedi, we already had that in The Force Awakens.
While it is impossible to ask all of the possible flaws of Rogue One not exist, I have my fingers crossed some of the biggest possible missteps have already been avoided.
Tell me what you think in the comments section below. What hopes for the Star Wars Story do you have? Would you like to see a connection between the characters and the established names of the series? Do you want to see a Jedi pop up in the rebellion? Do you hope everyone lives?