‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’ International Trailer Reveals Galen Erso’s Role [Spoilers]

Hot on the heels of the second trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, the film’s international trailer has made its way online, and a few key elements of dialogue included in the new clip have finally revealed to fans exactly what role Mads Mikkelsen’s character, Galen Erso, will play in the film.

Fans have speculated about Mikkelsen’s character almost since it was announced that he would be taking part in Rogue One. Over the past few months, the rest of the cast have had their character’s names and backstories revealed to varying degrees as the marketing machine for Rogue One goes into full gear, yet Mikkelsen has been conspicuously absent from both of the first two trailers, as well as the film’s first TV spot.

Last week, the second trailer for Rogue One dropped, confirming to fans the long-standing rumor (and lately, open secret) that Sith lord Darth Vader would be appearing in the film. This week, the international trailer for the film was released, and though the two are largely the same, as The Week notes, there are a few minor yet crucial differences.

The international trailer features an expanded back-and-forth between Mon Mothma (leader of the Rebel Alliance) and Felicity Jones’ character, Jyn Erso. Fans have long believed that Mads Mikkelsen would be playing Jyn’s father (a fact that the actor himself accidentally confirmed a few months ago, as The Inquisitr previously reported) and now it appears that they have received the confirmation they were looking for.

Whereas in the second trailer we heard Mon Mothma tell Jyn that a “major weapons test” was “imminent,” we now hear her say that the Rebels know of this test because they intercepted a coded Imperial transmission. Diego Luna’s Cassian Andor then chimes in, revealing to Jyn and the audience the actual source of the data.

“The message was sent by your father.”

This seemingly small reveal has led to a number of theories amongst Star Wars fans regarding exactly how willing a participant Galen Erso actually is in both the Empire’s construction of the Death Star and the Rebels’ plot. As The Verge notes, it is likely significant that Mon Mothma says the transmission was intercepted, and not that it was sent directly to the Rebel Alliance. Galen may be attempting to deliberately help the Rebels, or he may never have intended for the transmission to be received by them. Even if he is helping the Rebels, it remains to be seen whether he is a double agent or simply disillusioned after time in service to the Empire.

It has long been rumored that Mikkelsen’s character is a scientist intimately involved with the construction of the Death Star, and that his realization of the scale of destruction it can inflict is what turns him away from the Empire. Inverse suggests that is exactly what the new information implies, stating that Galen Erso deliberately leaks the information when he learns of Director Krennic’s ultimate plans for the Death Star.

While serving as the main villain of Rogue One, Director Krennic is not the only imposing presence with a stake in the Death Star; Darth Vader himself will be menacing the Rebels in the film, voiced by none other than James Earl Jones. Whether or not Darth Vader interacts with Galen Erso, or plays a role in his decision to reveal the battle station’s existence, is an open-ended question, the answer to which will only surface when Rogue One is released on December 16.

[Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images]