With the release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story drawing near, more details about the movie are starting to trickle through. While we have known for a very long time that the movie will finally show us how the Rebels got their hands on the plans for the Death Star, it is becoming apparent that Rogue One will be digging much deeper into Star Wars lore. Director Gareth Edwards recently talked about a Jedi holy land planet called Jedha that will play a major part in the movie. Now, Lucasfilm has dropped some new details about the planet.
The official Star Wars website keeps a database of virtually anything you can imagine from the official Star Wars canon. Recently, the Star Wars website added an official page and description for Jedha, which gives some new details of the planet, which will be prominently featured in Rogue One. Here is how the planet is officially described.
"A small desert moon frosted by a permanent winter, Jedha is home to one of the first civilizations to explore the nature of the Force. At one time a world important to the Jedi Order, Jedha serves as a holy site for pilgrims from across the galaxy who seek spiritual guidance. Now, the Empire occupies Jedha, and a prolonged battle between Imperial forces and scattered Rebels carries on in the timeworn streets."
It was said by Edwards that in the time period in which Rogue One takes place, people are losing faith in The Force, but it seems like Jedha will be a place for those who still have faith to find some solace. It also seems very likely that one of these "pilgrims" could be Donnie Yen's character Chirrut Imwe, who is not a Jedi, but is said to be a strong with The Force, and that was very much alluded to in the most recent trailer for the movie. Edwards also hinted recently in an interview with Entertainment Weekly that there is something very important on Jedha that both the Jedi and the Empire are interested in.
"It's a place where people who believe in the Force would go on a pilgrimage. It was essentially taken over by the Empire. It's an occupied territory... for reasons we probably can't reveal. There's something very important in Jedha that serves both the Jedi and the Empire. It felt very much like something we could relate to in the real world."
It has been heavily speculated that the "something" Edwards is referring to is Kyber crystals. For those who may not know, Kyber crystals are very rare, naturally occurring crystals that are used in certain Star Wars weapons, most notably lightsabers. It is also worth noting that the Death Star is powered by very large Kyber crystals, so that could very well be what it is the Empire is looking for on Jedha. Kyber crystals have already appeared in the new Star Wars canon, specifically in the Disney XD show Star Wars Rebels, as well as some of the new novels. And in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the Finalizer Star Destroyer, the powerful flagship shared by General Hux and Kylo Ren, has turbolasers that are more powerful and faster to recharge than Imperial-era weapons because they are run on kyber crystals harvested in the Unknown Regions.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is a prequel movie that takes place in the time between the events of Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope and tells the story of how the Rebels got their hands on the plans for the Empire's planet destroying weapon, the Death Star. The cast includes Felicity Jones, Mads Mikkelsen, Ben Mendelsohn, Alan Tudyk, Diego Luna, Donnie Yen, Wen Jiang and Forest Whitaker. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is set for release on December 16.