Rogue One is unlike any other Star Wars movie that has been released to date. Because of this, there have been countless theories and topics of debate regarding aspects of the film that many have gotten wrong since its release.
Written by John Knoll and Gary Whitta, the story of Rogue One appears veru different from other Star Wars movies. However, when looked at through a larger lens than just films that incorporates more movies than the ones that Lucasfilm and Disney have created, it fits in perfectly with the overall tone and storytelling associated with the Star Wars expanded universe.
The concept of Rogue One was pitched by writer John Knoll almost a decade before it came to fruition. The idea was to bring a story out of the Star Wars universe and turn it into a feature film. If anything, it was a trial run to see how independent Star Wars films would do with the general movie going audience.
Despite backlash from critics and certain fans, the numbers generated at the box office depict a complete success. Grossing over one billion dollars, Rogue One was the 22nd highest grossing film of all time, taking second place for highest grossing movie released in 2016.
Its success has spurred on a whole new movement within the SW universe, with films like Solo: A Star Wars Story coming just around the corner in 2018-- not to mention a whole array of independent movies planned out for the next decade.
From debates revolving around the Death Star to arguments over CGI going too far, here are the 15 Things Everyone Gets Wrong About Rogue One.
15 The Story Was Sporadic And Rushed
We’ll concede that this fact has some form of truth to it, but merely because the addition of so many new characters gave Rogue One the impression of feeling sporadic when it really wasn’t.
Once you’re familiar with who’s-who and you watch the movie for a second or third time, the scenes feel less rushed and the events taking place make a lot more sense.
Could there have been adjustments made to create a smoother flowing storyline? Perhaps, but when you take into account that this is a completely untold story within Star Wars canon, then you become more forgiving for those brief sporadic moments.
In regard to Rogue One feeling rushed, nobody wanted it to be a four hour film. Could there have been less main characters? Sure, but then the story might not have been as well-rounded.
14 Saw Gerrera Wasn’t Truly A Rebel
Those who watched Rogue One without watching Star Wars: The Clone Wars animation or reading Catalyst: The Rogue One Story were at a disadvantage in understanding who Saw Gerrera really was and how he fitted into the narrative.
Saw stands up for the little guy, especially after he looses his sister during the Clone Wars. His tactics are more extreme than the politically-run Rebel Alliance, but his heart is in the same place.
This is especially true regarding Jyn and the Erso family. It was Saw who arranged the initial escape of the Ersos from the clutches of Director Krennic and helped them start a new life away from the Empire.
Once discovered by Krennic, Saw took Jyn under his wing, teaching her how to survive in this cruel world so that she could have a life of her own.
13 Cassian Was Just A Hired Gun
Cassian Jeron Andor was more than a hired gun for the Rebellion. Cassian served as a soldier and intelligence officer for the Confederacy of Independent Systems during the Clone Wars.
He has taken on several aliases throughout his career-- such as Willix, Aach, and Joreth Sward. Cassian Andor was even known as Fulcrum. He was a veteran soldier and a tough nut to kill, making him a valuable asset for the Rebel Alliance. Cassian got his first taste of war when he was just a kid, tossing rocks at Imperial Walkers and Clone Troopers.
When Cassian states in Rogue One that he’s done some terrible things, he isn’t kidding. War is brutal, especially for those who serve on the front lines of obtaining and erasing information. This is why Cassian plays it cool as a cucumber when he receives the orders to take Galen Erso out.
12 It’s Too Dark And Serious
War is a serious subject, even in a fantasy universe like Star Wars. Critics of Rogue One talked about the dark bits featured throughout the movie, but failed to highlight its lighter side too. This is what Lucasfilm, and now Disney, is really good at: taking a serious theme and presenting it in a neat package appropriate for all age groups.
Despite none of the main characters making it out of the film alive, there’s no blood nor gore shown, and the humor balances out the more serious tones of the storyline.
Rouge One takes the viewer deeper into the galactic universe without crossing the line of being a serious war movie. It creates a backdrop which shows how evil can exist within both movements, but how hope always manages to get the final word.
11 Everyone Dying Was In The Original Script
It seems weird after all this time to think that not every characters featured in Rogue One was supposed to die. It’s even stranger to think that Disney and Lucasfilm preferred the script to kill off everyone, as opposed to letting a few live (for toy sales, naturally). In the original script, Jyn Erso and Cassian were supposed to survive the attack on the planet of Scarif.
Writer Gary Whitta spoke with EW in an interview stating: “The original instinct was that they should all die. But we never explored it because we were afraid that Disney might not let us do it, that Disney might think it’s too dark for a Star Wars movie or for their brand.”
Disney and the other writers eventually agreed, however, saying that it was only natural for Jyn, Cassian, and the rest of the crew to sacrafice their lives for the rebellion on Scarif.
10 Bothans Died Getting The Death Star Plans
The most commonly asked question after the release of Rogue One was: where are the Bothans? They were the mysterious folks who retrieved the Death Star information for Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, not A New Hope. That’s right folks: the rebels who died to retrieve the plans for the Death Star are the ones we see featured in Rogue One.
Bothans are furry mammalian anthropoids who remained neutral during the Empire's reign. There were those, however, who enjoyed playing both sides of the fence for profit.
For example, the group who relayed the second Death Star Plans to the rebels prior to the Battle of Endor played a major role in establishing the New Republic.
9 There Wasn’t Enough Character Development
Rogue One was always meant to be a solo movie, intended to fill in the plot holes between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. Creating a film based on developing a whole cast of new characters, only to have them all die, would have been a waste of movie goers time.
Disney and Lucasfilm tend to fill in the blanks regarding characters through other modes such as comic books, novels, and animation. With Rogue One, the book Catalyst: A Rogue One Novel provided all of the character information that one would need on Orson Callan Krennic, the Erso family, and Saw Gerrera.
Putting all of that information into Rogue One would’ve created a long (and boring) movie. The basics were covered and fans weren’t left confused as to how each character played a part in relaying the Death Star plans to the Alliance.
8 Politics Ruined It
Fighting with lightsabers and blowing up Death Stars is beyond exciting to watch, but it doesn’t have the same feel when the audience doesn’t understand what the characters are fighting for.
Politics in Star Wars films is a necessity. Without politics being incorporated into the scripts, the movies would be nothing more than a repeated flow of one action sequence after another. While this may sound good on paper, a purely action-based film creates a lack of empathy towards the characters and the causes that they are fighting for.
The Empire wouldn’t exist, let alone be able to take over the galaxy, if it didn’t have its hand in the political sphere. Politics also create tensions within both fractions (good and evil), showing how a “movement” isn’t always sunshine and rainbows.
7 Star Wars Rebels Wasn’t Tied In
Star Wars fans are a fickle bunch. Those who love the series Star Wars Rebels on Disney XD were clearly upset that the Ghost crew didn’t have a tie in like A New Hope did.
While the relation between the two in the canon timeline are cohesive with one another, Rogue One doesn't focus on the ending of Rebels. Instead, it’s about the beginning of A New Hope.
Star Wars Rebels fans are getting their due this year with the final and fourth season currently being aired. Despite the characters from the series not getting any screen time in Rogue One (mostly to avoid Star Wars Rebels spoilers), the Ghost ship can be clearly seen in the final moments of the space battle above Scarif.
It didn’t need to be there, but it was. Too many Rebels Easter eggs would’ve thrown off the overall consistency of the film.
6 It Has Too Many Easter Eggs
Easter eggs can be annoying if audiences aren’t familiar with original content. They can also cause confusion among fans regarding the plot of the story. Neither of these circumstances, however, pertain to Star Wars or Rogue One.
Callbacks and Easter eggs create a nostalgia feeling for long-time fans who have supported and loved on the galactic universe that is Star Wars for many years.
Easter eggs-- such as Rian Johnson having a cameo in Rogue One or Captain Antilles speaking with Bail Organa as they walk off screen-- are harmless to the overall quality of the movie.
Every major franchise uses Easter eggs as a treat for its fans. In fact, most movies take a page out of the Star Wars movie-making book because of how well the Lucasfilm team executes such nods to fans.
5 The CGI Characters Weren't Needed
CGI has taken movies into a whole new realm. It can have tremendously positive effects within a film... or it can be used to distract the audience in an attempt to cover up a weak story.
One thing is for sure: Rogue One didn’t use CGI to cover up a crappy story. Instead, it used CGI to give the movie a more natural feel for the timeline that it was meant to take place in.
Tarkin played a major role in the events leading up to A New Hope, as does Leia and even the pilots of the Red and Blue squadrons. To write a story without using these characters would have been insulting to fans and a disservice to the overall canon timeline.
The CGI was subtle and not overdone, creating the effects that it was meant to without being a total distraction.
4 It’s Not A Movie About War
This may seem goofy for long-time fans of Star Wars, but there is a large group of individuals who felt that Rogue One wasn’t about a war. Perhaps Disney owning the Star Wars franchise messed with their logic, leading them to believe that Star Wars movies aren’t about wars — because having the word "war" in the franchise title apparently doesn’t mean anything.
Rogue One was a Star Wars movie which showed a different aspect of the war than the one that we’ve been watching on the big screen for the last 40 years.
There weren’t any lightsabers, Sith, nor Jedi, but the force was still a predominant theme. The movie helped give audiences a look at the background of the franchise regarding major events that were taking place between the Empire and the Rebel Alliance.
3 There Are Too Many New Characters
This is a common misconception about Rogue One because audiences didn’t know who most of the characters were even if they weren’t new. The film created a good balance between new characters and old, especially considering the fact that major characters like Darth Vader and Grand Moff Tarkin only had minor roles.
The perception of too many characters also stems from audiences not understanding the roles of Galen Erso, Director Krennic, Saw Gerrera, and Cassian Andor.
Upon learning about these characters are and their various roles within the Star Wars universe, the idea of there being too many new characters becomes a moot point. The balance between existing and new characters toted a fine line, but the team for Rogue One pulled it off without too many hitches.
2 It’s Just Another Star Wars Movie About The Death Star
The age old argument that every Star Wars movie focuses solely on a Death Star will likely continue whether it’s true or not.
Yes, the Death Star-- or a planet resembling it-- tends to be a major focus in a majority of the films, but when it comes to Rogue One, it wasn’t put into the story for nostalgia. The Death Star’s existence and creation is the foundation for the entire movie.
Without the Death Star there are no plans to steal, no engineers to assassinate, and no reason for any of the characters to ever end up on the planet Scarif. Rogue One isn’t another movie about the Death Star-- it is the movie about the Death Star.
It gives A New Hope purpose, while also clearing up the many plot holes that have existed in the Star Wars universe for decades.
1 The Beginning Needed An Opening Crawl
Is it the opening crawl that defines what a Star Wars movie is or is the contents of the film itself? This is an age old question that most likely won’t get answered anytime soon. We would’ve loved to have seen an opening crawl in the beginning of Rogue One, but we also understand the logic as to why it wasn’t used.
Lucasfilm and Disney decided that, since Rogue One was a solo movie, the crawl would be left out to help audiences understand that there wouldn’t be any Jedi or Sith battles taking place.
Will they continue this trend with Solo: A Star Wars Story? If they want to stay consistent, then the answer is yes. However, if they felt that the backlash was too extreme regarding a lack of opening crawl in Rogue One, then they might back-pedal and include it. Only time will tell.
Can you think of any other facts that everyone gets completely wrong about Rogue One? Let us know in the comment section!