Reshoots have become quite commonplace among big budget movies lately, with most productions building these additional days of principal photography into the schedule before filming even starts. The box office blockbuster Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is no different, and while rumors persisted that the ending was changed considerably, LucasFilm's Pablo Hidalgo revealed in December that the ending always remained the same. Today we have word from some of the concept artists who worked on the film, about some of the details that did change during the reshoot process. If you still haven't seen Rogue One: A Star Wars Story yet, there will be SPOILERS below, so read on at your own risk.
The Star Wars Hyperdrive Tumblr has a rundown from a recent event at London's Gosh comic book shop, where Rogue One costume designers Glyn Dillon and Dave Crossman, as well as concept artists Adam Brockbank, Matt Allsopp, Vincent Jenkins, Jon Mccoy and Will Htay spoke about The Art of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story book and the movie itself. During this Q&A session, it was revealed that the iconic character Saw Gerrera (Forest Whitaker) was originally supposed to be on another planet. The artists revealed designs for both an ice planet, with designs that featured Snowtroopers and a different jungle planet, as seen in the first teaser, considered to be used as Saw's home.
Eventually, those ideas were scrapped in favor of Saw Gerrera making his home on the holy planet of Jedha. The other major change was actually redesigned in the span of just a few hours. After spending two months on the citadel tower seen on Scarif, their work was completely scrapped and they had to redesign the tower in just two hours. While the artists didn't clarify if the reshoots were responsible for this last-minute re-design or not, it's possible that this additional photography played a role in Scarif tower's new look.
The designers also mentioned that they wanted to use transport vehicles known as "CRAB-AT's," which resemble actual crabs, but they went with AT-ACT vehicles because they looked more familiar to fans. They spoke about not going "overboard" with new designs, which lead to a "conscious decision" to not introduce too many "new designs" into the film. The designers also added that they didn't have the budget to use a tank, so they designed a "hover tank" around a real tank they had at their disposal. The designers also revealed that they were on set during the Darth Vader scene, with the concept artist working on different sketches while filming was under way.
The costume designers revealed that they have a bulk of Army surplus material to work with, which they used to create that "classic Star Wars feeling mixing otherworldly and worldly designs." They also added that they would constantly look at the work of iconic Star Wars designer Ralph McQuarrie and storyboard designer Joe Johnston who they called the "unsung hero" of the franchise. They both created the "language" for Star Wars by bouncing ideas off one another during the original trilogy. The Art of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story book is currently available for purchase, if you want to see all of these designs for yourself.