Despite its unsurprisingly successful release, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story had a rather unclear production process behind it. Plentiful reshoots and cut footage were unveiled after the movie’s theatrical debut, and as details begin to seep in from various sources, it becomes clear that Rogue One: A Star Wars Story could have been a very different film altogether.
Please take note that this article contains major spoilers for Rogue One. If you haven’t seen this spin-off yet, we highly advise you to return here as soon as you’ve done so.
So, are you ready to read on? Here goes!
Originally, director Gareth Edwards intended on keeping the entire Rogue One crew alive at the conclusion of the movie, whereas in the theatrical version, every newly introduced character saw their demise either defending the Republic or fighting for the Rebellion.
Edwards himself wasn’t particularly font of the dubbed “survivor ending”, mind you, but he made the decision fearing the lighthearted Disney would disagree with his darker vision.
In a pulled podcast on Empire, which will be republished come December 26, the director stated that the entire team behind the project deemed the survivor ending unfitting.
Seeing how Rogue One: A Star Wars Story directly kicks off the events depicted in A New Hope, it wouldn’t make sense for these characters to survive and now show up in the follow-up film. To Edwards’ relief, Disney and Lucasfilm president Kathy Kennedy ultimately gave Edwards the green light on his original vision, agreeing with the aforementioned argument.
The canned survivor ending was never even filmed, but Edwards remained careful throughout the entirety of the project.
“I kept waiting for someone to go, ‘You know what? Could we just film an extra scene where we see Jyn and Cassian, they’re okay and they’re on another planet?’ And it never came. No one ever gave us that note, so we got to do it,” the director stated.
Luckily, Edwards was allowed to follow his original ideas, creating an unexpected ending sequence that delivered some iconic and memorable Star Wars moments. It’s quite rare these days that filmmakers can follow their ideal scenarios without the overarching studios interfering with the proces, so it’s comforting to hear that the Star Wars franchise isn’t going to unnecessarily water anything down.Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is in theaters now.
Read our review to find out whether or not it’s a worthy addition to the franchise!