Rogue One: A Star Wars Story almost had a very different ending, according to original screenwriter Chris Weitz. The film almost ended not with an earth-shattering kaboom and the most brutal Darth Vader scene ever filmed, but, rather, a wedding.
Chris Weitz, writer of films such as American Pie and The Golden Compass, sat down for an interview with podcast Cult Popture. He discussed in broad terms his career as a writer, but his most interesting revelations came when the topic shifted to his experience working on Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
It is no secret that many changes were made to the plot of Rogue One over the course of its troubled production. Many scenes from the trailers never even appeared in the film. Later statements by the cast and crew indicated that many planned scenes were changed late into production, but this interview offered previously unknown information about the Star Wars spinoff.
Rogue One: A Story Wars Story was originally written by screenwriter Gary Whitta. Weitz revised the script, and, in doing so, had a chance to examine what was planned prior to him landing the role.
Most notably, Weitz's original ending for Rogue One didn't kill the entire cast of characters. Instead, it ended with a wedding.
"The version prior to [mine] didn’t have everyone die," said Weitz. "As a matter of fact, it ended with a wedding. I think it was on the presumption that Disney wouldn’t allow characters to die with such abandon."
Of course, Weitz elected to change the script drastically.
“I felt it was necessary because nobody ever mentions them or sees them again," said Weitz. "But also because we’ve done this whole sort of theme about sacrifice that it was appropriate that all of our main characters die.”
That script was then later revised by Tony Gilroy as part of the extensive reshoots Disney and Lucasfilm requested following Gareth Edwards' principal photography. In regards to that, Weitz discussed some of the key differences between his shooting script and Gilroy's final script.
"If you imagine the beginning of the second act and the end of the second act kind of swapping places," said Weitz, "that would not be an inaccurate way to portray how it structurally was changed."
(via The Playlist)