One of the advantages of the Star Wars spinoff Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, is that the film places itself at the center of the events that sparked the beginning of the original classic A New Hope (1977). Focusing on the same era also opens up the mouthwatering possibility that the movie will feature characters we've come to know and love (or hate).
The end of Gareth Edwards' feature will reportedly stretch within touching distance of Episode IV, with the story arc focusing on the Rebel Alliance that steals the plans to the Death Star. As we know, there is one man who will be pretty pissed off with this cunning theft: Darth Vader.
Stolen Death Star Plans
At the beginning of A New Hope, Princess Leia is taken hostage by Vader, in an attempt to recover the plans Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) and co. will be trying to steal in Rogue One. Vader's involvement has all but been confirmed — combined with welcome reports that James Earl Jones will return — but how much of an impact will one of cinema's best villains have on the events we see in the film?
Well, as we know, uncovering information from a Star Wars movie is much more difficult than destroying the Death Star itself, so information is a little sketchy, and also contradictory at times. We do know Vader will have a "larger role than originally thought," which could render him the main antagonist.
Darth Vader Too Dark?
The tone of Rogue One has been likened to a war movie, so if Vader is the main Big Bad, he's inevitably going to be involved in a number of key battle scenes. Interestingly, following on from planned reshoots, a poster on Reddit claiming to have inside knowledge of the movie suggested that a particular Vader scene had to be watered down as it was too violent. KeepR1Dark wrote:
In a night scene Vader absolutely lays waste to a Rebel ground Squad. Unfortunately this is one of the scenes we have to water down. We made it like something from the old slasher/horror films. Rebel soldiers who joked about a boogie man with magical powers and then minutes later are absolutely wasted.
It's important to note that KeepR1Dark hasn't been fully validated by Reddit moderators. This could of course be because the story is made up (what? On the internet? really?), or perhaps if the Disney insider is overly concerned about revealing their identity.
Crisis? What Crisis?
However, this does tie in with recent reports of a crisis. THR journalist Borys Kit revealed the reason for additional filming. He tweeted:
The first cut was pretty serious. The new stuff to inject fun, "classic" #StarWars feel.
So, by putting two and two together, we can assume Vader uses the Fource (see what I did there?) to full effect.
Anyway, before we worry about the dangers the first anthology could face, it's important to remember the majority of blockbusters undergo patching-up work once principal photography has wrapped. Even The Force Awakens, which smashed the box office with over $2 billion in takings, underwent several weeks of reshoots. And that didn't turn out too bad, did it?
Plus, Variety reporter Justin Kroll suggested that the additional filming was centering around the cameo of a "very important character," which sounds much more appealing than an apparent crisis.
Could we be seeing Han Solo? Princess Leia? Or what about C-3PO or R2-D2? The possibilities are endless.
Rogue One is released on December 16, 2016.
How would you like Darth Vader to feature in Rogue One?