Empire (UK) - - NEWS -

MANY MOVIES ARE hotly an­tic­i­pated. It may, in fact, be one of the most over-used phrases in the world of film and en­ter­tain­ment. Of­ten ac­com­pa­nied by its friend, ital­ics, or brother, ex­cla­ma­tion mark. But this (spot the itals!), this is what it was first ar­tic­u­lated — coughed roughly out of some­one’s throat — for. When Star Wars was re­born, it was all about The Force Awak­ens, the first of the new Episodes. Then there was talk of ori­gin movies — com­ple­men­tary out­ings that told dif­fer­ent, smaller, im­por­tant sto­ries. And is there any story re­ally more im­por­tant than that of the hunt for the Death Star plans? We’ll be hon­est: we have high hopes and even higher ex­pec­ta­tions for Rogue One, and you can find out what we think, pretty much the mo­ment we think it, at em­pire­on­ We couldn’t let this event pass with­out our usual bom­bas­tic cel­e­bra­tion, though: so we are bring­ing you six

(six) cov­ers: one for each mem­ber of the Rebel Al­liance. Plus, an ex­clu­sive, mas­sive poster. The ea­gle-eyed (and nim­ble of fan site) among you will recog­nise it as an im­age from an in­ter­na­tional poster, ex­clu­sive to Em­pire and now, to you.

It’s un­doubt­edly a fit­ting end to a dra­matic year. I mean, it’s cer­tainly not been bor­ing, right? We’ve had women in capes, mur­der­ers slathered in grease, beasts squeezed in suit­cases, busters cov­ered in slime and men strad­dled by bears. Turn to p84 to see what thrilled, de­lighted, con­founded and tick­led us in 2016 (Bowie, Brexit, Prince and Pres­i­dent Trump not in­cluded), along with our ab­so­lute favourite films. The num­ber one might sur­prise you, but if you’ve seen it, we know you’ll be with us. Af­ter all, beau­ti­ful, thought­ful, lyri­cal movies are the ones that of­ten get us through.

See you next year. We’re ready for you, 2017. We think.

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