After a marathon session of waiting through the Olympics, the Rogue One: A Star Wars Story trailer is finally here! Giving time to all of the main cast and introducing the movie’s jaw-dropping visual palette, the latest trailer doesn’t reveal much beyond what we’ve already learned, but it certainly sells what you should be expecting. Read on for some impressions and new details dropped by Entertainment Weekly this week. UPDATE: There’s now an international trailer below, with a few new shots and a revealing new line…
From the opening shot, the X-wings flying through the canyons, Death Star eclipse and its upside down (not technically since it’s in space) shot, to the crew escaping from a storm/destruction (from a not fully powered DS test blast?), Rogue One has a very distinct visual style. It’s still obviously Star Wars, but it just looks and feels different in a very good way. And the gritty, war aspect of the movie comes through from those same visuals, as well as the somber music and darker overall colors. No matter how you’ll feel about the film itself in December, there’s no denying it’s going to look spectacular.
One thing I felt we learned from the trailer is a brief snippet of what Cassian does in the Rebellion, as he says here he’s been recruiting for them for a very long time. This could potentially open his character up to a lot of cameos, if and when they visit this era again. Imagine reading a book about some new Rebellion fighter and she was brought in by Cassian? Or we learn he got Hera Syndulla into the larger movement? Or, crazier yet, what if Han Solo laughs off an offer from Cassian during an appearance in the smuggler’s spin-off movie? Look, if it means more Diego Luna in my Star Wars, I’m down with that.
Otherwise, while the trailer did kind of feel like it was trying to be too many things at once, giving the rest of the cast lines (besides Riz Ahmed’s Bodhi Rook) was a really great touch. Getting to hear Chirrut Imwe’s (Donnie Yen) convictions about his belief and trust in the Force in the trailer makes me more excited to learn how that faith affects his lifestyle and of those he meets than from hearing them talk about it in interviews; Likewise, K-2SO’s bluntness sounds like it’ll provide some pleasant humor along the way. Overall, it’s not much, but getting to hear everyone adds that extra depth that you just can’t get from only seeing the character and the actors just talking about them.
But in the end, the focus stayed on Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones), and rightfully so, giving her a scene that outdoes the original teaser’s shot of her in the TIE pilot outfit: Jyn determined and unfazed as she charges towards a TIE fighter! This woman could probably talk on the whole Empire herself if she had to. She also shares some time with Saw Gerrera (Forest Whitaker), who we learned this week from the actor has, “…a very powerful relationship,” with Jyn (via EW); I look forward to seeing just how that relationship plays out screen.
And in other news recently revealed:
- I don’t think it’s crazy to say the planet featured throughout the trailer, first seen in that opening shot, is Jedha, though it could be Onderon i.e. where he first met Saw Gerrera in TCW. As for Jedha, it was revealed as a mecca for those who believe (and don’t necessarily need to have it to visit) in the Force back at Celebration Europe 2016. Gareth Edwards, the director, spoke more on the subject with EW, saying the planet, “…speak(s) to the themes of losing your faith and the choice between letting the Empire win, or evil win, and good prevailing.” The article’s author, Anthony Breznican, goes on to theorize the planet holds kyber crystals, i.e. pivotal pieces in the Death Star’s weapon, something which likely will be the case considering the crystals being mentioned in everything lately, from Star Wars Rebels, recent novels, and released but not fully produced The Clone Wars episodes.
- Bodhi might still be speechless in the trailer, mainly from K-2SO’s sobering predictions of survival, but the actor spoke at length about the character with EW, including some discussion about the Imperial patch he wears. This line is my favorite from the interview: “I think it’s to remind you of where you’re coming from, remind you where your debts are. Do you know what I mean?” For me personally, every day, looking at that, it reminds you of what you’ve done.”
- This might be a little spoilerish for you (though I think Jiang Wen’s slip-up at the RO panel at SWCE ’16 is an actual spoiler) but a certain (unsurprising) prequel character seems to have a cameo.
- The official site has updated its databanks with information on various RO items like: Jyn Erso, Saw Gerrera, the U-wing fighter (revealed by The Star Wars Show last week), and the interesting bit that Scarif is home to the principal construction facilities of the Empire, not just the Death Star.
- Alan Tudyk revealed (via EW, again) how Cassian and the droid became friends, as well talked a little bit about the accent he gives the droid (which we hear in the trailer).
- Breznican offers his take on the trailer, pointing out its David vs. Goliath motif (which, now that he points it out, I totally see it!).
- And last, but definitely not least, Felicity Jones talks with EW about Jyn Erso, how the character looks up to Mon Mothma, and all the physical training that went into preparation for the role.
Speaking as someone who saw the Rogue One panel at SWCE 2016, thus got to see the trailer they showed exclusively to attendees, this one was way better. That one did have the nice transition from a young Jyn running to a present day Jyn running and had a different Vader reveal shot, but it didn’t feature even 3/4’s as much new footage as this one did. In fact, its Vader reveal was a glimpse of his reflection on the floor, instead of the back of the helmet here.
I imagine we’ll get at least one more full trailer before the deluge of TV spots hit, but until then this second trailer should hold us over nicely until then.
UPDATE: And here’s the international trailer, where a line of dialogue from Cassian reveals just who alerted the Rebellion to the Death Star:
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