Rogue One: A Star Wars Story won’t be released for almost seven months, and yet it’s already the talk of fans everywhere. Yesterday, lots of that talk was about a New York Post article saying the film was “in crisis” and needed “expensive reshoots”. A new report now adds some much-needed detail to those claims.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the reshoots are definitely happening. However, the reason is much more specific. “The move is happening after execs screened the movie and felt it was tonally off with what a ‘classic’ Star Wars movie should feel like,” the article says. “The goal of the reshoots will be to lighten the mood, bring some levity into the story and restore a sense of fun to the adventure.”
In addition, the report says “that while [director Gareth] Edwards’ first cut was a solid showing, it didn’t measure up to the bar set in terms of four-quadrant appeal. ‘Anything less than extraordinary won’t do,’ says a studio insider.”
Deadline also has a report with a similar theme. “According to sources, the first cut was lacking the edge that Force Awakens had, and the story needs to gel. The film’s December 16 release date will not be affected.”
It certainly sounds like, while Rogue One may not exactly be “in crisis”, the Post wasn’t inaccurate in reporting the film has issues. Which it should. If the film was ready in May, they would’ve scheduled it for summer. It’s being released in December to give the film-makers time to get it right. A rough cut this early, warts and all, means Edwards is working hard.
These days, just about every big film schedules reshoots in post-production to make tweaks and changes. Some reports say The Force Awakens did reshoots mere weeks before release. Because of that, many believed the Post report was erroneously mixing standard reshoots up with something grander. Now, with this Hollywood Reporter story, it’s certain that’s not the case. If the tone of Edwards’s film didn’t match what Star Wars is all about, that most likely means there’s a problem that needs fixing. And now they can fix it.
Then again, one of the most exciting things about Rogue One was the possibility of a film that didn’t feel like a cookie-cutter Star Wars movie. Audiences want a sense of adventure, sure, but something darker and different could also be welcome. However, as the Hollywood Reporter source points out, “[t]his takes place just before A New Hope and leads up to the 10 minutes before that classic films begins. You have to match the tone.”