ROGUE ONE Director Gareth Edwards Discusses Darth Vader, Missing Trailer Scenes, and Opening Crawl

During a recent interview with Empire, director Gareth Edwards talked about aspects of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The film is still blowing up at the box office, and for the most part, fans are loving it! There are a few naysayers out there, but what can you do?

Edwards talked about a few aspects of the film that have been hot topics of conversation since its been release including the awesomeness of Darth Vader, the lack of an opening crawl, and the scenes in the trailer that were cut from the final version of the film.

About Darth Vader and coming up with his big reveal moment, he said:

"I'm jealous of moments like in Empire Strikes Back where you see the back of [Vader’s] head and you just go, 'oh my God, that is so cool,' and wanted to try and find something like that in our film...He’s really a burns victim, and it’s not going to be fun for him when he’s not in the suit – he’s going to be uncomfortable. I love the idea of showing that he’s vulnerable as well. Vader’s very, very bad, and so you try and just glimpse something of him that gives him some humanity, or it makes you empathize with him. Just seeing those scars and realizing that he’s, you know, an amputee, and just reminding you of that before he does all his stuff, it makes you torn, I think."

I absolutely loved the reveal of Vader in the film. There was a mix of oohs, aahs, and gasps from the audience in the theater when I saw the movie. It was definitely one of those exciting goosebump moments. The director also talked about the opening crawl and revealed that Gary Whitta actually wrote one in the first draft of the script!

"The first screenplay that Gary Whitta wrote had a crawl in it...and then at some point, probably like six months before we were filming, we were in a meeting, and they talked about not having an opening crawl, because these are standalone films, not part of the sagas. And if I'm honest, there was an initial kind of like, 'whaaaa? I want the crawl!' 

He explained why it was ultimately cut from the film:

"The opening sequence is kind of the crawl of our movie. It's like the setup. And our film is also born out of a crawl – the reason we exist is because of a previous crawl, so it feels like this infinite loop that will never end."

I'm completely fine with there not being an opening crawl, but I would still love to read what Whitta wrote up for it! Edwards goes on to talk about the footage in the trailers that were ultimately cut from the film. He explains that they were just cool shots that the marketing team wanted to use to use to help sell the film. They were already well aware that these shots were not in the movie, but that didn't stop them from using them. 

"There was a bit of a process to refining the third act in terms of the specific shots and moments, and so certain things just fell away. But then what happens is marketing love those shots, and go, 'oh, we've got to use that.' And you say, 'well, it's not in the movie'. And they say, 'it's okay, it's what marketing does, we just use the best of whatever you've done.' And so there's lots of little things, but towards the end you go, 'I know that's not in the film, but the spirit of it's in the film'."

This is something that we've seen happen a lot over the years with movie trailers containing footage that wasn't in the final cut, but it was a big deal with Rogue One because it was a Star Wars film! 

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