Just forget the words and sing along

Friday, April 08, 2016

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Trailer

So when Disney bought Lucasfilm a few years back and announced their grand plans for the Star Wars franchise, one of the most intriguing was the announcement of the standalone films.  These films would be set outside the main saga of Episodes I thru however many Disney feels like making, and tell some of the other stories that happen in this universe.  "It's about thinking of the Star Wars universe as a setting, not a saga," was one of the phrases bandied about when they started going into depth on this.  Of course, it's not new.  For precedent, we've got the Clone Wars movie and cartoon, and the Ewok TV movies of yore.  The umbrella title the Disney came up for this expanded universe was Star Wars Anthologies.  Some where along the way, though, they simplified it to Star Wars Stories.  And, we just got the first trailer for this first Star Wars Story, Rogue One.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story teaser poster

Rogue One tells one of the most speculated-about stories in the Star Wars universe:  taking place shortly before Episode IV, it details the Rebellion mission to steal the plans to the Death Star.  The story itself was hatched by legendary ILM visual effects artist John Knoll, and fleshed out by screenwriters Gary Whitta and Chris Weitz.  Gareth Edwards, director of 2014's Godzilla reboot, came on board to direct.  In one of the earlier interviews about the project, Edwards mentioned how this is grittier than the rest of Star Wars:  "No one cares about the Force...there's no Jedi swooping in at the last minute to save you."

Felicity Jones as Jyn Erso

Not much is known about our cast of characters yet.  The only whose been named so far is the one named in the trailer, Jyn Erso, played by Felicity Jones.  She'll be leading a ragtag group of Rebel commandos on this mission, including Oscar-winner Forest Whitaker, Hannibal himself Mads Mikkelsen, Hong Kong action legend Donnie Yen, and Wash from Firefly, Alan Tudyk.  Of course we need villains, so we get Ben Mendelsohn as an Imperial admiral.

Watching the trailer today, I was amazed at how much the actress playing Mon Mothma looks like the original actress from Return of the Jedi.  A quick search online reveals that that actress is Genevieve O'Reilly, and she actually played Mon Mothma in Revenge of the Sith, but her scenes were cut!

The Death Star dish being lowered into place

In this trailer, there's definitely much to like.  They play up some of the classic Star Wars imagery quite well.  That scene of the Death Star's dish being lowered into place.  The Imperial Walkers marching along the landscape.  But we do get a few new things too, like some funky new Stormtrooper design and that one guy taking out a Stormtrooper with some martial arts moves.

Funky new Stormtrooper

In all honesty, I'm having a little bit of trouble getting excited for this one.  I think I'm still on a massive Force Awakens hangover.  I'm older now...I need more time to recover before the next Star Wars party comes along.  If anything, I think we're going to see Star Wars hype level out from here on out.  Force Awakens was very much like Phantom Menace in the "OH MY GOD!!!  IT'S BACK!!!" mentality in the advertising.

I'm cautiously optimistic.  Like I said, there's a lot of good-looking stuff in that trailer, but I need to take to Tylenol, crash on the couch, and wait for The Force Awakens to finish passing through my system.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story hits theatres on December 16.

The Imperial Walkers

No comments: