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Simple Pitch Behind ‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’ Revealed, Plus Kathleen Kennedy Says Indiana Jones Is Coming

Simple Pitch Behind 'Rogue One: A Star Wars Story' Revealed, Plus Kathleen Kennedy Says Indiana Jones Is Coming

Let’s not talk about "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" for a second, and take a look beyond. According to Wired writer Adam Rogers, "If everything works out for Disney, and if you are (like me) old enough to have been conscious for the first ‘Star Wars’ film, you will probably not live to see the last one. It’s the forever franchise." He’s probably not wrong — Disney and Lucasfilm will be carrying these films, characters, and worlds as far as they can, for as long as they can. That said, they have been very protective of the brand and considered in their approach, however, sometimes it’s just a simple idea that spurs a movie to get made.

Spinoff, "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story," is now filming, and as we know it details the plans to steal the Death Star. And that sentence is pretty much how the pitch went, too. “I just have this very simple idea, about the rebel spies in the opening crawl of ‘A New Hope’ who steal the plans for the Death Star,” Lucasfilm CCO John Knoll recalled saying to company President Kathleen Kennedy. And it’s from that kernel that the film from director Gareth Edwards was launched (see the ‘New Hope’ crawl below).

“In the case of ‘Rogue One,’ we’re essentially making a period piece,” said Kiri Hart of Lucasfilm Story Group, “the benefit of making additional episodes that move forward on the timeline is that we are making new space for ourselves.”

And while everyone at the company is currently focused on lightsabers, Kennedy does admit that they haven’t forgotten about the heroics of another character in their stable. “I’ve talked about it with everybody at Disney. Alan Horn, [chair of Walt Disney Studios] is very supportive of it," she said of moving on to other properties. "But at the same time, he’s right when he says we’ve got a lot on our plate…And then I’ll be working with them on Indiana Jones.”

So yes, add that to the rumor machine that continues to buzz around another "Indiana Jones" movie, with usually cranky Harrison Ford showing enthusiasm for cracking the whip again. “Oh, yeah. Yeah, I’d love to do another Indiana Jones,” he told EW recently. “A character that has a history and a potential, kind of a rollicking good movie ride for the audience, Steven Spielberg as a director — what’s not to like?”

Meanwhile, Spielberg himself added to the speculation fire, saying last month in a taped tribute to Ford at the British Academy Britannia Awards, “I can’t wait to work with you again on ‘Indiana Jones 5.’ This is NO announcement, just my fervent hope.” And it’s likely not just Spielberg’s hope, but one of many, many others too. 

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The thing that confuses me most about ROGUE ONE is that it seems to be claiming ground already trodden by STAR WARS REBELS. One can see Ezra, Kanan, Sabine, et al going after the Death Star plans themselves. How could the two not overlap somehow? (It also begs the question of where REBELS is headed, given none of the characters show up in A NEW HOPE.)

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