Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is the first spin-off film in the Star Wars universe. As its protagonist, formal criminal Jyn Erso is recruited by Mon Mothma who recognizes the necessary skill sets that Jyn possesses. Mothma trusts that she has the tools to help the Rebel Alliance steal the Death Star plans from the Empire. The initial teaser trailer gave us a better feel for the character of Jyn. Among her transgressions of the past are forging Imperial documents, possessing stolen property, aggravated assault, and resisting arrest.
It’s clear that she is the main focus of the film. We even got a taste of some new information regarding her father Galen Erso in the latest international trailer. Her father is a scientist who once worked for the Empire, but Galen appears to have betrayed the Empire and is sending a signal to the Rebellion as to the whereabouts of the Death Star plans.
This puts the mission in motion as the Rebellion now has a strategy to learn more about the Empire’s ultimate plan. Jyn is tasked with leading a team of heroes on a near suicide mission as they attempt to locate the plans of the weapon known as the Death Star. Ever since director Gareth Edwards categorized this film as a “war film,” we can anticipate plenty of deaths in this film. After all, most of these characters are never seen or heard of in any of the later movies.
Of all the characters who are likely to die, Jyn Erso seems like the least likely candidate as the lead of the film. As we've already seen with Marvel movies, traditionally Disney hasn't been willing to kill off any main characters. But Rogue One has the chance to make Jyn Erso a groundbreaking character because it begs the question, “Would Disney have the guts to kill off their lead character in Rogue One?” We have to ask a few questions first.
Would Jyn Erso's Death Fit The Story?
The obvious answer to this is that we don’t know at this point. Until we obtain more information regarding her character, there’s no way of knowing if she’ll make it out alive or not. What we do know is that she is neither seen nor referenced in the later films. This leads me to believe that something serious happens to this character that keeps her out of the later stories, whether killed off or not.
In fact, most of these characters in Rogue One are brand-new to the Star Wars franchise, with the exception of a few of characters like Mon Mothma, Bail Organa, and, of course, Darth Vader. It’s pretty safe to say that the majority of these characters run the risk of dying a noble death but should Erso also be included in that list? If it were me, I would absolutely do it. Why? A few reasons.
We've Seen Tragedy Strike Multiple Times In The History Of Star Wars
Obi-Wan Kenobi, Padmé Amidala, Yoda, Anakin Skywalker, and most recently Han Solo were killed in one of the Episodes at some point. They were all major characters that left a legacy in the Star Wars universe. That’s not even to mention all the Jedi that were assassinated thanks to Palpatine’s Order 66 or all of the lives that were lost when the planet of Alderaan blew up.
The Star Wars films have had their fair share of tragedy and Rogue One should be no different. Being the first Star Wars spin-off movie, the team behind it should go all out and give us the war film that we deserve. This film should up the stakes by giving us a better understanding of the Rebel Alliance and how so many of its members gave their lives to fulfill their mission. In particular, as the leader, Erso’s death would be a bold and poignant move for Disney to make. Unfortunately, they probably won't be so daring.
Jyn Erso Is Another Female Lead In The Star Wars Mythology
Seeing as how movies are trying to incorporate more female and diverse characters in the lead, Disney may be hesitant to kill her off too quickly. That doesn’t mean it won’t happen eventually, but it doesn’t seem like a strong possibility from the outset. Though Rey is the lead in the new main trilogy, having yet another lead female character in the spotlight enables another role model for young girls and children alike to look up to. Killing her off could upset a lot of children who fall in love with this character from the get-go. This is why Disney must tread carefully if they are to keep their fans satisfied.
And Why Kill Off A Character If There Are More Stories To Tell?
Another thing to consider is that everything that Star Wars puts out is canon. That includes any video games, merchandise, tv shows, novels, or comic books. If Erso becomes a big hit with fans, it would be tough not to continue her story to learn what happens to her after the events of Rogue One. This is a business after all, and a smart business decision would be to keep this character alive, instead of leaving many story ideas on the table. The revenue that they could make just from this one character could be astronomical. If Rey was a sure hit, why not Jyn Erso?
Conclusion: If It Wants To Be Like Saving Private Ryan, It Shouldn't Be Afraid To Kill Off Jyn Erso
If I were the one writing the script, I would absolutely have this character die a noble death. When this film is over, I want to be sobbing in my chair knowing how much pain and suffering these Rebels had to go through to get the job done. If this movie is to be considered the Saving Private Ryan of the Star Wars universe then that’s exactly what I hope to see.
What do you think will happen to this character?