In case you haven’t heard, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is now playing in theaters everywhere and it’s pretty good. This first standalone Star Wars film serves as a direct prequel to the events of the original film, A New Hope, and manages to provide some intriguing new context surrounding the Death Star, the Empire and the Rebels fighting against them. It’s also a film with what should be an understandably obvious ending, even if it is the journey seen in the film that matters more. That said, there could be an unexpected future for this film that had its sequel already made back in 1977.
It seems odd to ask about potential follow-ups to Rogue One, as it has been constantly described as a one-and-done affair and everyone should basically know the logical next step in the Star Wars timeline. That being said, there is always potential in the eyes of a studio to do more, if monetary success continues to pave the way. Corresponding with this is some interesting news in regards to the film’s highest paid cast member.
As is being reported by THR, Jyn Erso herself, Felicity Jones, apparently has a sequel option in her contract. It is far too early to know what the next steps would be regarding Jones’ involvement in the Star Wars universe, but THR does mention the speculation surrounding a young Luke Skywalker film in relation to seeing Jones again. Jones even somewhat stated in another interview that a sequel is not out of the cards. She stated jokingly, “It’s set up for one. I mean, there’s a number in the title.”
Clearly it is too early to tell what is going to happen, but that doesn’t change the facts of Rogue One. While not giving anything away, the film’s story reaches a pretty clear conclusion. The initial idea for the film came from Industrial Light & Magic vet John Knoll, who basically pitched the film by talking about its conclusion as read in the opening crawl of A New Hope. To add on to that would be taking a big chance in relying on the strength of Jyn Erso’s popularity, especially given the insistence by Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy that this is it for the Rogue One narrative.
Still, what if this were to happen? While there may be only so many ways to go with seeing Jyn Erso again, would this really be needed? Part of the joy of Rogue One (at least in concept for those who may have been disappointed) was the idea of seeing a movie about the under-represented heroes of the Rebellion. This is basically The Dirty Dozen of the Star Wars universe, meaning it’s not about how they fare in future adventures, but what they manage to accomplish, while the “more important” people are elsewhere. This ragtag group of soldiers believe themselves to be going on a suicide mission and having a follow-up film takes away from that mystique.
However, perhaps Jones will prove to be a big hit with the fans. The Oscar-nominated actress certainly has the talent to do more than what we see in Rogue One. Maybe taking things in a new direction with her will allow for some new perspectives. Or maybe the contract was just made before everyone knew what was really going on.