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ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY (2016): Reshoots Will Make War Film Lighter In Tone

Felicity Jones Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Reshoots Aimed to Lighten Tone of Film

Reshoots were announced yesterday for Gareth EdwardsRogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016). It turned out that these will not be run-of-the-mill reshoots to get a particular shoot right or to fill in a narrative hole unnoticed until a screening. Instead, they will be deep tissue rewrites. What was shrouded in secrecy the day before yesterday was why the reshoots were taking place in the first place.

That was revealed yesterday.

The reshoots are due to tone. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is to be a given a lighter tone. Apparently, since Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is war film involving a secret mission to steal the plans to a new weapon that the opposition has forged, director Gareth Edwards gave the film a war feel with very little family fun and levity.

Though appropriate, this war tone, consistently held throughout the film (I assume), would make the film singular amongst all the other Star Wars films. Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures does not want that, who’ve deemed the first cut of the film “tonally off with what a ‘classic’ Star Wars movie should feel like.” Disney executives want a film that fits comfortably within the structural environment that the best Star Wars films inhabit. They want that magic formula, that strategy, followed by Rogue One.

When Disney executives saw the completed film recently at a top level screening, they were apparently not happy with the film, specifically with how divergent it was, tone-wise, from the Star Wars norm.

My guess:

There is no love story in the film.

There is no lovable rogue.

There is very little, if any, Droid humor.

The main character, Jyn Erso, takes herself seriously at all times.

The ending to Rogue One: A Star Wars Story will be somber. If you use logic and take the information present in Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope at face value, you pretty much know how this film ends. There are only two real possibilities for the personnel on the secret mission: death or capture / life sentences. Since none of the people on the secret mission are ever seen again (or mentioned or referred to by name), these are the only two possibilities. I am guessing it is the former, thus the bleak, unhopeful ending to Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (even though their sacrifice eventually leads to a great victory for the Rebel Alliance).

You can see why the Disney executives wanted changes made to “lighten the mood, bring some levity into the story and restore a sense of fun to the adventure.” Those changes, those reshoots, will begin this month.

I, personally (and I am probably not alone), would love to see the first cut of the film before it is altered. I would love to see a Star Wars film with a serious tone throughout its run-time but is such a film a quote, unquote Star Wars film? A sense of fun have made Star Wars films, Star Wars films.

Looking for consistency in the Star Wars franchise is not entirely a bad thing, especially considering what this film really is and what it comes before in the series. “This is the closest thing to a prequel ever. This takes place just before A New Hope and leads up to the 10 minutes before that classic film begins. You have to match the tone!”

This argument has multiple merits e.g. a erratic tone can damage a film or in this case, a franchise, but it is also flawed. If you carbon copy the same formula time and time again, the series, at some point, will become stagnant. Originality, taking risks, will keep things fresh.

A middle ground must be reached between originality and staying true to what made the franchise great in the first place. That is what, I believe, the reshoots are aimed at.

Leave your thoughts on the reshoots for Rogue One: A Star Wars below in the comments section. For more movie news, visit our Movie News Page, our Movie News Twitter Page, our Movie News Facebook Page, our Movie News Google+ Page, and consider subscribing to us by Email, “following” us on Twitter, Tumblr, Google+ or “liking” us on Facebook for quick updates. Rogue One: A Star Wars will be released in U.S. theaters through Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures on December 16, 2016.

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About the author

Rollo Tomasi

A Political Science and MBA grad who started FilmBook during an eCommerce B-School course in 2008. Cinema and TV addict. Former writer at Empire Movies, Blogcritics, and Alternative Film Guide. In addition to writing for FilmBook, he also edits the copy published on the website, manages its writing staff, manages the back-end operations, site finances, its social network accounts, and works with publicists, actors, and companies on press coverage and promotions. He has also created and Trending

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