Tony Gilroy, who was brought in to oversee the Rogue One: A Star Wars Story reshoots, has revealed how much of a bad state Gareth Edwards’ film was in before he came onto the project.
It’s no secret that Rogue One: A Star Wars Story underwent extensive reshoots before its release, but what was a secret up until now was how much of a bad place Gareth Edwards’ film was in before Disney brought in Michael Clayton director and Jason Bourne movie scribe, Tony Gilroy. Gilroy was brought in to rewrite some of the film’s scenes, and supposedly he oversaw many of the film’s reshoots.
Gilroy recently appeared on an episode of the ‘The Moment with Brian Koppelman‘ podcast (via Den of Geek) and he spoke at length about his time on Rogue One, and it turns out things were in a much worse state than we were led to believe by Disney before his involvement. We did learn that the entire ending was reworked by Gilroy, but it was much more than just the final third of the movie that needed reworking.
According to Gilroy, the ‘director’s cut’ that Edwards showed to the Disney execs was a mess and scared them. Gilroy describes that there was a sense of “confusion” around the film and they didn’t seem to know what to do with it. However, Gilroy quickly realised that the solution was a pretty simple one.
“You just go, ‘Folks, just look. Everyone’s going to die.’ So it’s all a movie about what all these people are going to sacrifice, and you need to motivate them with a purity… so is that a theme? Everyone is going to die and sacrifice?” said Gilroy during his conversation with Koppelman.
“I knew exactly when I saw what I saw, it was instantly clear to me the first thing that needed to happen… I saw the purity that was missing.” This is an interesting admission to make on Gilroy’s behalf and although he does not say it outright, does suggest that he had a big hand in directing the film. Some have suggested that he ‘ghost-directed’ Rogue One.
He then went on to claim that the movie was a mess. “It was just a mess and fear that they gotten themselves in,” Gilroy said. “And because it wasn’t really my movie for a while, I slept every night. Like for my own movie, I wouldn’t sleep, but because it was somebody else’s – but at a certain point, everyone’s looking at you.”
“In fact, that was my superpower…. I’ve never been interested in Star Wars ever, so I have no reverence for it whatsoever. I was unafraid of that. And they were in such a swamp – they were just in terrible, terrible trouble, that all you could do was improve their position.”
And it turns out that his experience on Rogue One was enough Star Wars for him. “No, I don’t like it. It doesn’t appeal to me. I don’t think Rogue is a Star Wars movie in a lot of ways. It’s a Battle of Britain film.”
Personally, I would like to see what Edwards’ cut of Rogue One looked like, just to satisfy my curiosity. I loved Edwards previous films, and I did enjoy Rogue One, but it sounds like he was making a very different movie to what was finally released.