Surprise — there’s a new “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” trailer! And oh yes, it delivers. The film’s second full-length story trailer really emphasizes the story, way more so than any of the trailers for “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” We learn a lot about Jyn Erso and her band of rebels in this 2:15 trailer, as her motivations, the Empire’s plot and the Rebellion’s plan to stop it all come together.
Unlike the previous two trailers, this one’s packed with almost entire all new footage. There’s a lot to unpack in this adventurous clip, from destroyed Jedi statues to our most extensive looks at Ben Mendelsohn’s Director Krennic to date. Since most of these new moments — and there are a lot of them — whiz by in a flash, we’re gonna break down the most revelatory (or just plain awesome) moments from this “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” trailer.
“Rogue One” really walks the line between giving Star Wars fans totally new visuals and also harkening back to 1977’s “Star Wars.” Plenty of the Imperial and Rebel costumes that we only saw in the first “Star Wars” film are on display in this trailer, along with totally new stormtrooper regiments. The fact that the trailer also starts off with a wistful shot of a moisture farmer standing next to his equipment, very similar to how we first saw Luke Skywalker on Tatooine, is emblematic of this film’s style. It’s clearly moisture farming equipment, but this isn’t a desert planet. And considering that Galen Erso (Mads Mikkelsen) is a scientist, it’s possible that these devices do more than just farm moisture — or maybe that equipment’s widespread and the equivalent of a kitchen appliance?
Krennec & The Death Troopers
The opening scene continues to play out, and we see Director Krennec stalking through the moss and mud towards Galen’s home, flanked by a squad of Death Troopers. Previous trailers have kept Mendelsohn’s Imperial officer relegated to the shadows or iconic still shots. We see a lot more of him this time around, and we also learn a little more about his larger role in the film’s mythos. For instance, it looks like Krennec’s the one that separates Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) from her father — a move that will certainly make for a tense showdown between those two in the film. We also get to see him with his own personal squadron of Death Troopers, a new class of deadly stormtrooper that’ll be marching through convention halls for years to come.
Jyn Erso’s Origin
Previously, all we knew of Jyn Erso’s origin is that she had been on her own — scrounging, fighting and managing to survive — for quite a long time. Not only does this trailer confirm that Mikkelsen is playing Jyn’s father, it also shows that Jyn probably didn’t roam the galaxy on her own by choice. Rather, her family was taken away from her by the Empire. We also get to see Jyn as a young child — and hear that kid actor do a spot-on Felicity Jones impression.
Fall of the Jedi
“Rogue One” is the first movie Star Wars fans have seen that takes place in the dark expanse of time in-between “Revenge of the Sith” and “A New Hope.” That means we’re getting more of a glimpse at what the galaxy was like at the height of the Empire’s power. That’s never more evident than when the camera pans over the broken and buried statue of a Jedi Knight, presumably on the desert-like planet Jedha that we’ve seen in other trailers. “Rogue One” director Gareth Edwards has spoken about Jedha before, calling the planet the Mecca or Jerusalem of the Jedi faith.
It’s also confirmed in this trailer why Krennec captured Galen Erso: his knowledge is critical to the development of the Death Star. We see Galen, rain-soaked, coming face to face with the stern Director Krennec as Imperial troops surround them. We also learn in this quick sequence that Jyn’s been recruited by the Rebellion because of who her father is. What specific knowledge Galen possesses is unknown, but we do know that part of “Rogue One” might be a rescue mission similar to that of “A New Hope” — except this time the prisoner is Mads Mikkelsen instead of Carrie Fisher.
Call Sign: Rogue One
We then cut to what may be the start of the ragtag Rebel group’s mission — and we get the film’s titular line. K-2SO (Alan Tudyk) notes that someone (Rebels? Imperials?) is requesting a call sign. Bodhi Rook (Riz Ahmed) comes up with the perfect one on the fly: Rogue One. This moment should be a big one for longtime Star Wars fans, as the “Rogue” designation is a big deal. Wedge Antilles’ X-wing flight group Rogue Squadron was formed after the Battle of Yavin depicted in “A New Hope” and went on to fly in “Empire Strikes Back” and “Return of the Jedi” as well as a number of novels, video games and comics. If this right here is the birth of the “Rogue” designation that will later be used by Luke Skywalker and other X-wing pilots, then that’s a historic moment in the new Star Wars canon.
Krennec & Vader
If you look closely, you’ll notice that Krennec is speechifying in front of a very important audience in this clip: Darth Vader himself. The shine of his helmet can be seen in the corner of the screen as Krennec chews up and spits out his pledge regarding the Death Star’s ultimate power. And really, his line — “the power that we are dealing with here is immeasurable” — could easily have been said by any of the Imperial officers seen in “A New Hope.” The hubris on display is right in line with that of General Tagge or Grand Moff Tarkin’s, thus making this one specific scene feel very “Star Wars.” Plus, now we know that Krennec feels comfortable enough around Darth Vader to act mad dignified. That’s some inner confidence, right there.
AT-ST Hits The Street
“Rogue One” gets a lot of mileage out of remixing bits of Star Wars lore that fans feel like they’re used to. By placing vehicles and soldiers we’ve seen before in completely new settings, the film creates a sense of vitally new nostalgia. That’s on display right here, when we see an AT-ST — a vehicle we’ve previously only seen on the forest moon of Endor — stomping its way through a crowded city street (presumably Jedha). This also shows that “Rogue One” is playing with a lot of the toys in the Star Wars toy box. Walkers, spaceships, troopers — “Rogue One” is the toy line come to gleeful life right before our eyes. And, in this case, it’s come to life in a totally surprising way.
Forest Whitaker’s aged Rebel fighter Saw Gerrera makes another appearance in this trailer, with the shot focusing first on his cybernetic leg. Gerrera’s a unique case in this film, as he’s a character that originally appeared in four episodes of the “Star Wars: Clone Wars” animated series. Gerrera’s inclusion here further cements the fact that the larger Star Wars shared universe is all connected; if characters from the cartoons and novels appear in films, then it’s likely that ones from the Marvel comics or other expanded universe titles will get live-action counterparts as well. What role Gerrera will play in the film remains to be seen; so far he’s only been shown in this one dark location, which implies that his role might be smaller than the other characters.
The first trailer for “Rogue One” ended with a shot of Jyn Erso in a TIE fighter pilot uniform, teasing that the film’s hero might be a double agent or seduced by the Dark Side. This trailer confirms that that’s probably not the case, as we see the Rebel’s Imperial infiltration team in full get-up. Not only is Jyn in disguise, but Captain Andor (Diego Luna) is in a stuffy Imperial Officer’s uniform. And K-2SO’s involvement makes perfect sense, as he’s an Imperial enforcer droid that has gone rogue and joined the Rebellion.
So far all we’ve seen of Donnie Yen’s Chirrut Îmwe is him using his staff to wipe out a group of stormtroopers. This new story trailer proves that the blind Chirrut also knows his way around plenty of other weapons — eyesight be damned. We see Chirrut pick up a massive blaster (or it might be a Chewbacca-style bowcaster?) and fire away at Imperials. This guy’s a master of all weaponry, it looks like, thus making him potentially one of the most formidable Rebels in the bunch.
Lest you think that all of “Rogue One” takes place on dusty planets and embattled beaches, this latest trailer makes sure to include footage of a good ol’ fashioned X-wing dog fight. We see a squadron of star fighters diving through an orbiting space station and dodging enemy blaster fire, while pilots shout and the camera zooms around. When this moment hits in the trailer, it really feels like “Star Wars” — even more so than all the previous moments. And this moment also begs the question, will we hear any familiar names or call signs during this battle? It’s not been really brought up yet, but it’s also possible that doomed X-wing pilots like Biggs, Porkins or Dutch could pop in for a quick cameo in a scene like this one.
This moment right here. It’s been over a decade since we last saw Darth Vader move on screen in a live-scion role, and that was back in 2005’s “Revenge of the Sith” when he was stumbling around yelling “noooo.” This moment, though, features a fully menacing Sith Lord emerging from the smoke with dark purpose. We don’t know how big Vader’s role in the film will be; odds are he’ll be used sparingly. But a little of Vader goes a long way. As one of the franchise’s — and cinema’s — most iconic characters, just seeing him for a second is enough to whip any audience into a frenzy. One thing’s for certain from this quick moment, though: we wouldn’t want to be in Krennec’s boots.
AT-ATs On The Beach
We’ve seen a lot of the beach battle in previous trailers, but this aerial shot showing the scope of the skirmish is a real doozy. It’s also beautiful, with shades of blue and green clashing with the cold Imperial gray. It’s worth noting that the AT-ATs look a little different from the ones seen in “Empire Strikes Back,” with oddly colored panels on their sides. Another AT-AT can be seen that appears to be hollow in the middle, thus making us wonder if we’re going to see these All-Terrain Armored-Transports used like actual transports instead of walking wrecking balls.
Run For Your Life
And in the final seconds of the trailer, we get an up-close and personal look at an AT-AT as it stomps right behind — and almost on top of — Baze Malbus (Jiang Wen). It’s possible that we’ll see the massive AT-ATs do a lot more damage this time around; more than they originally did in “Empire Strikes Back.” In the 1980 “Star Wars” film, the AT-ATs just trudged through snow on Hoth, making their way through an unobstructed path. This time around, we’ll see them crushing nature underfoot and — as you can kinda see a city skyline in the background of the aerial shot — maybe they’ll tear through some buildings as well.
Arriving in theaters Dec. 16, “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” stars Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Donnie Yen, Mads Mikkelsen, Alan Tudyk, Jiang Wen and Forest Whitaker.
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