Earlier this week, rumors started flying about Disney's first Star Wars spinoff Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, with sources claiming that the studio isn't happy with the movie, and that they forced director Gareth Edwards (Godzilla) to undergo four weeks of extensive reshoots this summer. The reshoots were ultimately confirmed later that day, although the rumor that reshoots were caused by negative test screening feedback were ultimately shot down. Today we have even more details about the reshoots, including word that writer Tony Gilroy, best known for writing the original Bourne trilogy, has come aboard to tweak the script.
There had been rumors that Christopher McQuarrie had come aboard to help with the reshoots, but he shot down those reports through social media earlier this week. However, Entertainment Weekly's report reveals that Tony Gilroy has come aboard the project, signing on this spring to offer notes on the first cut and write new material for the reshoots. The site reportedly spoke to "high-level sources" anonymously, who revealed these details, although LucasFilm wouldn't offer any official comment, since they don't respond to rumors. Tony Gilroy is said to have been brought on because of his ties to producer Frank Marshall, who he worked with on the first Bourne trilogy and the 2012 spinoff The Bourne Legacy, which Tony Gilroy wrote and directed.
Tony Gilroy will also have a presence on the set when reshoots begin, serving as a second unit director under Gareth Edwards. Both filmmakers have also worked together in the past, with Gilroy providing uncredited rewrites on his 2014 blockbuster Godzilla. The site's sources also laughed off rumors that they were reshooting nearly half of the movie, while adding that they were already worked into the schedule before principal photography took place. Reshoots were originally scheduled for this spring, but they were pushed to summer to give director Gareth Edwards more time to decide what he wants to change. Here's what one source had to say about the extent of these reshoots.
"The changes have everything to do with clarity and character development and all take place [as inserts] within scenes we've already shot."
Another source revealed that the reshoots will center on more intimate moments, not reworking entire battle sequences, claiming, "It's a lot of talking in cockpits." The reshoots will span between four to five weeks, starting later this month and wrap up in mid-July, just days before Star Wars Celebration will take place in London on July 15. The plan is to lock picture in August and start scoring in September, which would actually put it ahead of the schedule that Star Wars: The Force Awakens was working from. That movie also underwent reshoots last summer, and they didn't lock picture until October. The site's unidentified source revealed that the tone is much different than Star Wars: The Force Awakens, claiming that it is a "war film." Here's what this source had to say, shooting down rumors that they will reshoot nearly half of the film.
"If we were rewriting the movie and reshooting 40 percent of movie, we would not be finishing in August. People really would be panicking - and changing the release date."
The reshoots involve contributions from several different actors, and one of the challenges has been bringing the cast back together, after the reshoots shifted from spring to summer. While it isn't confirmed who will be present, the cast includes Felicity Jones as Jyn Erso, who leads a team of Rebel soldiers played by Diego Luna, Donnnie Yen, Alan Tudyk (playing a droid in performance capture), Riz Ahmed, Forest Whitaker and Wen Jiang. It also isn't known if Ben Mendelsohn, who plays an Imperial officer, and Mads Mikkelsen, rumored to be playing Jyn's father, will be back for reshoots. Here's what another source had to say about the challenges involved in scheduling.
"It is a complicated schedule trying to pull people in around other things they're doing. And this cast is spread out all over the world."
This report also shoots down rumors that the reshoots were done to make the movie more "family-friendly, and at this point, only two people outside of Lucasfilm have seen the movie, Disney executives Bob Iger and Alan Horn. One source said that it didn't feel like the Disney executives were "meddling" with the film, adding that "people will go insane" when new footage is showcased at Star Wars Celebration in July, just after reshoots are completed. Here's what another source had to say about the reshoot process.
"I can't think of anything in world of creativity [that isn't changed or reworked]. You need to do that when making these movies."
Rogue One takes place before the events of Star Wars: A New Hope and will be a departure from the saga films but have elements that are familiar to the Star Wars universe. It goes into new territory, exploring the galactic struggle from a ground-war perspective while maintaining that essential Star Wars feel that fans have come to know. We'll be sure to keep you posted with more details on Rogue One.