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SYFY WIRE Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Rogue One's killer Darth Vader scene shows why reshoots can be stellar

By Adam Pockross
Gareth Edwards Rogue One A Star Wars Story

For those folks who still seem to think film reshoots automatically mean trouble, screenwriter Gary Whitta (The Book of Eli, After Earth) is here to prove you wrong. And all he needs for documentation is one of the best Darth Vader scenes in all of Star Wars-dom.

Whitta reminded us of the moment in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story yesterday, while responding to Film Facts' tweet noting that the scene in question — the film's penultimate scene that finds Darth Vader throwing the mother of all boarding parties while mowing down Rebels in hopes of reacquistioning the stolen Death Star plans — was actually a result of reshoots that occured mere months before the film's December 2016 release.

Because apparently Rogue One (which Whitta earned a Story By credit on) wouldn't have been depressing enough with just the Death Star destroying Scarif and scorching our beloved heroes Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) and Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), director Gareth Edwards and company wanted to really put the Dar into dark. And perhaps the director wanted to find room for himself in the movie as well (as you can see in the photo up top).

In response to Whitta's praise of the scene, Star Wars: Rogue One Adaptation author Jody Houser, noted that she loved the scene too, but was somehow tasked with packing all that action into but one page of the comic.    

After Whitta's expressed his shock at such a tight task, Houser went on to explain that they needed to fit "most of the Battle of Scarif/all of the leads' deaths in one 20-page issue," and that in order to accomplish that, she "had to write it backwards to make sure it worked/everything fit."

It’s funny to think that the one scene you might expect to see in a movie about stealing the Death Star plans — the one leading up to Princess Lea and the dynamic droids jettisoning away to short-lived freedom aboard the Tantive IV — was actually an afterthought. It's also funny to think that technilogically speaking, all those schematics could likely have been just as easily sent to the Tantive IV in the first place, instead of running the floppy disc from one side of the command ship to the next.  

All this Rogue One talk has us more than excited to see Diego Luna in Disney+'s Cassian Andor series (documenting his time before the scorching) shooting later this year, even though Whitta isn't expected to be involved