Let the rogue one in

Gareth ed­wards’ Star Wars spin-off launches

Empire (UK) - - PREMIERE - Chris he­witt

LACK-CLAD stormtroop­ers star­ing im­pas­sively as some­thing burns in the back­ground. AT-ATS clomp­ing around on a trop­i­cal beach. And not a lightsaber in sight. Gareth Ed­wards’ Rogue One is Star Wars, al­right, but viewed from a whole new an­gle.

We’ve known for some time that the first in the Star Wars Story an­thol­ogy, which will fill in the blanks around the Sky­walker-fo­cused Episodes, would cen­tre on the Rebel mis­sion to steal the plans to the first Death Star, and that it would be more of a war movie than any Star Wars yet. When the movie’s stun­ning first trailer hit in early April, it was a sur­pris­ing and pleas­ing mix of clas­sic ref­er­ences (not one, but two Gonk droids) and things we haven’t seen in Star Wars be­fore.

Al­though we know, broadly speak­ing, that the Rebel’s scheme to half-inch the plans proves suc­cess­ful, we know lit­tle else. The trailer con­firms that Felic­ity Jones’ char­ac­ter is called Jyn Erso, a badass loner who can take out a squad of stormtroop­ers in a blink, but all other char­ac­ter names re­main elu­sive, in­clud­ing Diego Luna’s Rebel cap­tain and Ben Men­del­sohn’s Im­pe­rial vil­lain, wear­ing a uni­form that may mark him as a Grand Ad­mi­ral. But that didn’t stop the spec­u­la­tion — is Jyn Erso the mother of The Force Awak­ens’ Rey? Is Don­nie Yen’s robed fighter blind? Does one shot, of a black-clad fig­ure kneel­ing in a room con­tain­ing Im­pe­rial guards, sug­gest the pres­ence of Darth Vader and the Em­peror? Was one Death Star cor­ri­dor scene filmed in Ca­nary Wharf Tube sta­tion?

The an­swer to the last ques­tion, amaz­ingly, is yes. The rest will have to wait for De­cem­ber. Un­less we put a team to­gether and break into Lu­cas­film HQ to find the Rogue One plans…

rogue one: A star wars story

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