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Just announced.

Rogue One is the title for the first film in a unique series of big-screen adventures that explores the characters and events beyond the core Star Wars saga. Rogue One will be directed by Gareth Edwards (Monsters, Godzilla) and written by Oscar nominee Chris Weitz (Cinderella, About a Boy, Antz). The first actress cast is Felicity Jones, who garnered an Academy Award nomination and critical acclaim for her performance in The Theory of Everything. The idea for the story of Rogue One came from John Knoll, an Academy Award-winning visual effects supervisor and chief creative officer at Industrial Light & Magic. He will executive produce along with Simon Emanuel (The Dark Knight Rises, Fast & Furious 6) and Jason McGatlin (Tintin, War of the Worlds). Kathleen Kennedy and Tony To (Band of Brothers, The Pacific) are on board to produce and John Swartz (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) will co-produce. The film starts shooting this summer in London and is due for release on December 16, 2016.
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I don't think he's a bad fit actually; the 'Antz' script was very good, 'About A Boy' was also good (though an adaptation) and the buzz on his 'Cinderella' is also good. I'm ignoring 'The Golden Compass' and 'The Nutty Professor II', of course.

So it's going to be about X-Wing pilot(s); what time frame are we going to be in? Post-Episode VII or Pre? Could it even be Pre-ROTJ?

There's a big gap of 30yrs to play with between ROTJ and TFA and we've already seen that X-Wings are still knocking about.

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So how do we think this will work out? New actor playing an old character like Wedge? Maybe a pseudo comic adaptation - there's plenty of decent characters ams stories in the rogue squadron series. Or maybe it'll be all new characters cameoed or at least referenced in episode vii.

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There's not a chance that John Williams we be able to score all these films, so what will they do? Retaining the style is vital, in my opinion, as the music is as important to the series as anything else.

What composer is going to want to take that on?

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Zack Snyder pitched a stand-alone Star Wars film that would have been a version of 'The Magnificent Seven' but with seven badass Jedi, choosing to make a stand and defend a remote colony, even if it meant exposing themselves to the Empire.

He would have brought all his visual pomp and broke the visual mold, which is probably why it was rejected.

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Bit of info posted on Slash Film about some concept art shown to shareholders:


Actual info bit:

he concept art was a gritty “dark/gray image”: “very dark and done in greens, so it evoked the idea that it was being done under the cloak of night.”

The art showed 4-5 armored, soldier-like persons on the ground, “with two to three ships in the background.”
Disney blogger/investor StitchKingdom says that the imagery “evoked concept art of a video game” and it “screamed Halo to me.”
“Dozens of figures in fatigues appeared to be storming something with a strange helicopterish vehicle (open on the sides) in the background, releasing more troops.”

Unfortunately neither of the sources we talked to knew enough about the Star Wars expanded universe to describe exactly who the characters may have been or what ships were pictured in the background.
There were tough-looking vehicles too.
The ships were fairly dark, and in the background.
They weren’t obviously X-Wing Fighters, which our sources would have recognized.
They “seemed a bit bigger than X-Wings”.
“More like a transport ship of sorts” but probably not as big as the Tantive IV (the transport ship we see Darth Vader board at the beginning of A New Hope).
The characters were all “generic” looking “wearing the same dark outfit.” “I didn’t see anything that would distinguish them as individuals.”
When I asked LA Times reporter Daniel Miller if they looked more like Rebel Alliance fighters in orange jumpsuits or a band of bounty hunters, he replied: “Neither. They were masked but not whimsical looking like those bounty hunters (I realize whimsy & mercenaries don’t go together).”

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