Like most freelance writers in the entertainment sector, I don’t only write for one website or even about one topic. Following lots of game developers to bolster my resume with games writing, I came across this Tweet regarding the state of the popular and well-reviewed space grand strategy game, Stellaris:
I know you’re on this website because you want to read about movies, and you’ve already read the headline, so I’m sure you know where I’m going with this, but, for all the hullabaloo we’ve heard about the turmoil of "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story", not a peep has come from an official source. Because of this, and I will certainly elaborate, I’m not worried about "Rogue One."
That’s not to say that the prospect of reshooting 40 or 50 percent of what is easily the most anticipated movie of 2016 isn’t worrying, and it’s not to say that studio pressure to water down the tone of a promising young auteur, whose tone he showed in the first Rogue One trailer is precisely what everyone loved about said trailer, doesn’t make for a juicy headline, because it is and it does.
All that being said, we’ve seen nothing even close to the above Tweet. We’ve seen rumors printed about Christopher McQuarrie helming the reshoots, posted by people and websites who never even asked him if that was the case. We’ve seen rumors about poor test screenings that never happened. We’ve seen rumors about inserting a cameo from young Han Solo in a movie that supposedly ends right before a movie with fully-grown Han Solo.
Hell, it seems that all we know for sure is that there is going to be some reshoots, and the only official source on the matter, Mads Mikkelsen, has said it's not a big deal.
So I’m throwing down the gauntlet on the story that won’t die and everyone bent on repeating it: put up or shut up.
If 40 or 50 percent of Rogue One is being re-shot, show me a delay. If Gareth Edwards is being phased out, creatively, show me a Tweet from someone replacing him. If the film is too dark, show me a talking suit who says it’s not in line with Disney’s brand. Until that time, I won’t speculate on whether or not a Darth Vader scene that we can’t even confirm exists is too dark, or the ramifications of a massive reshoot and I won’t bemoan the state of Hollywood that doesn’t give directors the creative freedom they deserve.
It’s like we haven’t learned anything from the lessons of past rumor mills. Remember when Leo was going to be raped by a bear in The Revenant? Remember when James Wan was “seriously considering” leaving the upcoming Aquaman film?
Shit, let’s keep with Star Wars. Remember when Luke Skywalker was going to be a Sith Lord? Meanwhile, every meaningful spoiler (Han Solo’s relationship with Kylo Ren, his tragic death, etcetera) were kept almost completely under wraps, without even so much as a peep from the rumor mill.
I admit that, as I’m writing this, I’m refreshing my google news search to ensure that nothing concrete is actually reported, but something tells me I shouldn’t be holding my breath.