Rogue One Writer Explains How the Film Almost Had a Happy Ending
Warning: There are spoilers ahead for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story!
Over two years following its release, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story continues to be a fan favorite. That said, it did end rather bleakly for all of its heroes. But a new behind-the-scenes story indicates that this wasn’t in the original plans. During a recent appearance on the CultPopture podcast (via The Hollywood Reporter), co-writer Chris Weitz broke down the film’s original ending, which had a more upbeat approach.
“The version prior to (my involvement) didn’t have everyone die,” said Weitz, while speaking about writer Gary Whitta’s initial script. “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.”
However, Weitz didn’t reveal who got married at the end of the initial script. He went through with his more downbeat script, with the heroes making sacrifices.
“I felt it was necessary because nobody ever mentions them or sees them again,” explained 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.”
As a result, Weitz and director Gareth Edwards found themselves in the midst of restructure.
“If you imagine the beginning of the second act and the end of the second act kind of swapping places, that would not be an inaccurate way to portray how it structurally was changed,” said Weitz. “A lot of the deaths were put in different locations than they were originally put in the script and were originally shot. I’m not sure why, for instance, K-2 died in a different place.”
Tony Gilroy also contributed to the film during editing, including an awesome appearance by a certain villain.
“The Darth Vader kicking ass I cannot take credit for,” admitted Weitz. “That was a later invention.”
But in the end, fans found enjoyment with Rogue One– as did Weitz.
“I feel great about the final cut. I had no idea what it was going to look like until I sat down at the premiere. It was like watching a movie I had written and a new movie at the same time. I really, really liked it.”
Do you think Rogue One: A Star Wars Story would’ve been better or worse with its original ending? Let us know in the comment section below!