The countdown to Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is well under way, and in just a matter of weeks, store shelves will be packed with products promoting the spinoff. Hasbro has been building up awareness for their new toy line, unveiling several new images of the various action figures, vehicles, and voice changing masks that will be available. Of course, Hasbro is just one of Lucasfilm’s many licensing partners that will be releasing merchandise. The likes of Funko, LEGO, and others are getting in on the fun as well, and everything is being highlighted in the buildup to “Rogue Friday.”
Last week, a collection of Rogue One toys were featured in a stop-motion animation short, which was the first chapter in a video series called “Go Rogue.” The project is a collaboration between Lucasfilm and a group of fans who write and produce the content themselves. Now, the second installment has been released online, which you can watch above.
Chapter two picks up right where its predecessor left off, as Jyn Erso attempts to retrieve the Death Star plans for the Rebel Alliance. In her pursuit, she encounters Baze Malbus and Chirrut Îmwe, learning that they, along with Captain Cassian Andor and droid K-2SO, are allies of the rebellion. They work together to defeat the latest Imperial attack, which is led by the humorously named TK-XXL – portrayed by the JAKKS Pacific Rogue One BIG-FIGS 20-inch stormtrooper figure. Upon their escape from Jedha, the team discovers that they only have half of the plans and their mission has only just begun.
Like the previous video, a variety of toys are showcased. In addition to the JAKKS Pacific stormtrooper, a number of LEGO sets are seen (including the U-wing and Imperial hovercraft). For the action figures, the makers of the short pulled from a number of lines, such as Hasbro’s Black Series, the Disney Store Elite Series collection, and Hasbro’s standard 3.75 inch set. The Director Krennic Funko makes another appearance, and two Hot Wheels vehicles (TIE Fighter and U-wing) are also featured. Each one is used effectively (and comedically) in the video, giving fans a taste of what they can do when the products are officially released.
It’s noted that “Go Rogue” is a four-part series, meaning there are two chapters left to be seen. It will be interesting to see what toys are included in the next videos as the group tries to locate the other part of the Death Star instructions. One would expect Saw Gerrera might have a role to play down the line, and it would be a shame if the Rebels didn’t have a showdown against Darth Vader at the end. The Dark Lord of the Sith is going to be a part of Hasbro’s Rogue One plans, so they’ll want to put the villain in the spotlight.
All in all, these shorts are fun and creative looks at the Star Wars toys that are coming this fall and should only raise the level of excitement collectors have as they await Rogue Friday. This franchise has been a merchandising juggernaut for years, and people spend millions (perhaps billions) of dollars on tie-in materials even before they see the film. Last year’s Force Awakens toys were hot sellers, so we should see a repeat of that in 2016.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story opens in U.S. theaters on December 16, 2016, followed by Star Wars: Episode VIII on December 15, 2017, the Han Solo Star Wars Anthology film on May 25, 2018, Star Wars: Episode IX in 2019, and the third Star Wars Anthology film in 2020.
Source: Star Wars YouTube