The newest Star Wars film, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, is scheduled for release this December. But on May 30, Page Six reported that Disney executives are “not fully satisfied” with the first cut and have ordered “expensive reshoots.”
“The execs at Disney are not happy with the movie,” a Hollywood insider told Page Six, “and ‘Rogue One‘ will have to go back into four weeks of expensive reshoots in July.”
But now, Movie Pilot reveals just how bad it is: Up to 40 percent of the movie could need to be re-shot.
What exactly was wrong with the latest installment of the Star Wars franchise? According to the Hollywood Reporter, executives felt the film was “tonally off with what a ‘classic’ Star Wars movie should feel like,” as it felt more like a “war movie” than a Star Wars fan would expect.
“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,” the Hollywood Reporter said.
“Anything less than extraordinary won’t do,” a source told the Hollywood Reporter, especially given that Episode VII, released last year, grossed over $2 billion worldwide.
An End To Annual New ‘Star Wars‘ Films?
The problems associated with Rogue One run deeper than just needing a few tweaks, Movie Pilot speculated. In fact, they “could put a stop to a lot of the planned spin-off and solo films,” which were promised when Disney purchased the franchise from George Lucas a few years ago.
The reason why is that films like those from the Star Wars franchise typically cost $120 million to make, Movie Pilot said. And given that the Star Wars name is attached, audiences come with certain expectations. If the latest installment is not as good as it should be, that will mean lower revenues for future Star Wars movies.
With Rogue One, “We are talking about reshooting almost half a film, which means a lot more money will have to be assigned to the movie,” Movie Pilot said. “What can this mean? Well, a higher profit-expectancy from the studio.”
“While having ‘Star Wars‘ in the title is no-doubt an enormous helping hand, this film is coming only a year after its predecessor became one of the biggest box office hits in history.”
Additionally, releasing a new Star Wars movie each year lessens audience anticipation. As an example, Movie Pilot cited the recent Captain America movies. Captain America: Civil War was the third comic book movie released this year, and it grossed less than other films of its genre.
The bottom line is that if Rogue One does not do as well — especially given the expensive reshoots — that could make Disney less desirous to produce more future Star Wars movies, placing future projects like films centering around Han Solo or Boba Fett in jeopardy.
For this reason, the future of the Star Wars franchise could very likely hinge upon how well Rogue One fares at the box office.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
The story is said to take place immediately prior to the events of Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope — the first movie of the franchise, originally released in 1977, Page Six said. The plot centers around a risky plan to steal plans for the Death Star in an attempt to destroy it. Episode IV began with a Star Destroyer catching Princess Leia’s shuttle and her placing the plans and a secret message in the droid R2-D2 to Obi-Wan Kenobi, a reclusive Jedi Knight on the desert planet, Tatooine.
One source told the Hollywood Reporter that the plot of Rogue One “leads up to the 10 minutes before” the beginning of A New Hope.
Given the setting, fans will be expecting to see a few familiar faces — even though none of the starring cast members have been in previous Star Wars movies — like Darth Vader, a young Han Solo, Chewbacca, R2-D2, and C3PO.
If the swashbuckling Han Solo does appear, he won’t be played by Harrison Ford, who reprised the role in Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens after a 32-year gap between the previous chronological installment, Return of the Jedi, released in 1983. Instead, he will be played by Alden Ehrenreich, who was recast to play Solo in another upcoming standalone Star Wars movie. If the famed character appears in Rogue One, it will probably be a brief cameo appearance since his role is not central to the plot.
But if Rogue One doesn’t fare well at the box office, a brief cameo appearance could be all that fans will see of Ehrenreich as Han Solo.
What do you think? Will Rogue One: A Star Wars Story be as good as The Force Awakens? Are expectations too high?
[Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images]