The first Star Wars standalone film has been given a title: Rouge One! Thankfully, this is not going to be a Han Solo or Yoda prequel story! And it is set to be released on May 26, 2017. As of now, very little is known about the story of Rogue One, but as Star Wars fans will recognize, the title could refer to callsigns for X-Wing pilots. However, rumors suggest that it might have something to do with a group of bounty hunters stealing the Death Star plans, which sounds almost like Guardians of the Galaxy. If executed well, a film that follows X-Wing pilots like the X-Wing book series or the Rogue Squadron video games, which were amazing in their day, could be great. With that said, a bounty hunter story should be fantastic. Maybe, we could have a cameo by Boba Fett or even Cad Bane!
Felicity Jones is set to star in the film. She was recently nominated for an Academy Award in The Theory of Everything, and she played Felicia Hardy, aka Black Cat, in The Amazing Spider-Man 2. Due to recent events with the Spider-Man franchise, she is obviously not going to star in the now irrelevant Black Cat film. However, casting a female lead is an interesting idea. Maybe Disney is trying to build something as popular as The Hunger Games by casting a relatively unknown (to the general public) actress in the lead, but if it works, I am all for it.
Gareth Edwards is set to direct, and his direction of Godzilla (review here) did feature some impressive scenes of destruction, yet the characters were all forgettable and one note. We knew that Edwards would direct this standalone film for a while, but I am still skeptical. I really hope that he can deliver.
Chris Weitz is writing the screenplay for Gary Whitta's first draft. Weitz received a Best Adapted Screenplay nomination for About a Boy, which he wrote and directed; he is also credited for writing Antz, The Golden Compass, and Cinderella. Whitta is credited for After Earth (a truly awful film) and The Book of Eli, which was not that impressive either. Honestly, I am surprised by the lack of talent in the writing department. Hopefully, Kathleen Kennedy and the other execs will not allow a bad script to go through.
Overall, I am a bit worried by the lack of proven talent in the writing and directing department, but the fact that this is not going to be a spinoff of a known character makes me excited. Until we see how The Force Awakens turns out, we will really not know what to expect, but I am still extremely excited! Please comment below with what you think about this announcement and check back tomorrow for more Star Wars news and later this week for Saint Patrick's Day special posts.
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