Gareth Edwards Compares ‘Rogue One’ To ‘Empire Strikes Back’; Talks Diversity

Rogue One will be coming to a theater near you next week, and while we wait, we can speculate about what the movie will be like when we finally get to sit down and watch it, excitedly eating popcorn and candy and speed-drinking soft drinks (or whatever you smuggle into your respective theater). Thankfully, Gareth Edwards, Rogue One‘s director, is helping us out a little bit with what he has to say about what the first of these standalone Star Wars anthology films will feel like.

“In terms of Star Wars that I love, I guess we’d be aiming for The Empire Strikes Back [in tone]. While our movie takes itself quite seriously, there’s a lot of fun and humor in it, and hope is the key thing. It’s about trying to achieve something.”

It’s not too surprising that the film will compare to another movie in the same franchise, what’s cool is that they weren’t required to make their film have the same feel of the others.

“We essentially got the license to be different on this movie. With a standalone film, we don’t really have to exist for other movies to continue, so we could be brave, and that’s what we did.”

The fact that they had free reign to make the film be whatever they wanted it to be is pretty interesting, as it seems that we’ll be getting something that will be part of the Star Wars universe, and yet, feel different from anything we’ve ever seen. It’s an interesting idea, and hopefully it will pay off when it comes out.

The Rogue One director also commented on the amount of diversity in the upcoming movie, something that has fans, especially fans of color, excited about how well the movie will do.

“The story of this movie is having all these different people from all these different places and backgrounds who have very little in common, they all believe in a good future for the world.”

While it’s cool that this particular story asks for people of “different places and backgrounds”, I for one hope that other Star Wars films, standalone and main story, will continue with adding diversity on their to-do list when making their films. Even when a story doesn’t “ask” for someone of color, or of any other minority specifically, hopefully they’ll keep going with what they started doing since their Finn was cast in The Force Awakens.

What do you think about Edward’s comparison? Obviously, we haven’t seen the movie yet so we can’t confirm for sure whether it actually approximates the feel of The Empire Strikes Back, but what do you think about their aiming for a darker tone for Rogue One? Also, do you think that the Star Wars franchise will be adding more diversity to their rooster of characters? Let us know in the comments below, or on social media!