While John Williams is confirmed to score the soundtrack for this December's Star Wars: The Force Awakens, it seems the idea of also taking on a number of standalone films set outside the main saga was too much to ask. Instead, director Gareth Edwards has turned to a familiar collaborator for his upcoming Star Wars standalone movie. Alexandre Desplat is now confirmed to score Rogue One.
Alexandre Desplat revealed the news himself with Radio Classique's Culture Club. He just won the Oscar for scoring The Grand Budapest Hotel for Wes Anderson. This past summer, he also composed the music for Gareth Edwards's Godzilla. That film saw him incorporating Akira Ifukeube's iconic 1954 Godzilla theme, so it makes sense that he would come aboard to provide a soundtrack that will also demand some of the original John Williams music be used. Though, no further details about his plans have been unveiled at this time.
Rogue One is the first in a series of Star Wars spinoffs, and is set to begin shooting this summer in London at Pinewood Studios. The original idea for the movie came from ILM CCO John Knoll, with a screenplay by Chris Weitz. Felicity Jones is confirmed to headline the movie, though her character hasn't been revealed at this time. No story details have been released, but concept art shown off by Disney at a shareholders' meeting indicates that it will revolve around soldiers on a mission. The movie opens in December 2016.
Alexandre Desplat is quite an accomplished musician. He also collaborated with Wes Anderson on The Fantastic Mr. Fox and has scored for some big franchises, including creating the music for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. He previously worked on two of Chris Weitz's directorial efforts, The Twilight Saga: New Moon and The Golden Compass. And along with his Oscar win this year for The Grand Budapest Hotel, he was also nominated for The Imitation Game.