The Death Star

It's an awesome time to be a Star Wars fan. When Disney bought out Lucasfilm back in October of 2012, they laid out a plan to expand the world George Lucas created to a degree we've never seen before. They may have scrapped all of the Expanded Universe material that accumulated over the years (or at least decreed that it's not official canon), but they're working their tails off to fill in that void with projects like the upcoming Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

At this point, we already have new novels, an animated television series in Star Wars Rebels, a handful of comic book titles from Marvel, and, of course, J.J. Abrams' Star Wars: The Force Awakens. All of the expanded universe stuff is great, but the movies are what fans really want to see, and in addition to a new trilogy of interconnected saga movies, we're getting a series of standalone, so-called, "anthology" films that examine unexplored areas of the Star Wars saga, illuminating various corners of that far, far away galaxy.

Within these anthology movies, which have also been called "Star Wars Stories," we'll get to peer into the hidden crevices of this universe we love so much, explore different times and places, and possibly learn about events we've only ever heard about. The first of these is Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, and we have a lot of questions. Who is going to star? What will it be about? Will we see familiar characters? Will this impact/be impacted by the other films? Let's take a look at what we know about Rogue One so far.

First, let's take a look at the newest trailer!

And now let's break down what we know about the latest Star Wars feature, starting with:

Ben Mendelsohn Rogue One

What Is The Star Wars: Rogue One Release Date?

As mentioned earlier, it's a good time to be a Star Wars fan. In addition to the surplus of other officially canon material, which includes everything from TV shows to comics and video games like Star Wars: Battlefront, we're getting at least one movie a year for the foreseeable future - alternating between Episode titles like Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and Anthology chapters, like Star Wars: Rogue One. Star Wars movies have, up to this point, traditionally arrived in theaters in May of their respective years of release. The Force Awakens changed that trend, however, and was a huge winter blockbuster in December 2015. For now, the franchise will stick to this schedule, as Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is scheduled to be released almost exactly one year after, with a December 16, 2016 release date on the calendar.

From the look of things, there won't necessarily be a ton of consistency release date-wise with the upcoming films. Rian Johnson's Star Wars: Episode VIII, which doesn't currently have a title, will also be a pre-Christmas release, coming out on December 15, 2017. Less than six months later, specifically on May 25, 2018, audiences will be treated to Phil Lord and Chris Miller's Han Solo film - and then Colin Trevorrow's Star Wars: Episode IX will come out a year after that (on May 24, 2019).

What Is The Star Wars: Rogue One Rating?

Films don't typically get their official rating until just a few weeks before they open, so, since we still have some months to wait before Star Wars: Rogue One hits theaters, we aren't completely sure of the rating just yet. But, the Star Wars movies have a long history of PG or PG-13 ratings, so you can bet that this film will be in line with that track record. Star Wars: The Force Awakens had a PG-13 rating, and it's even more likely that Rogue One will carry the same rating when it opens this December.

Gareth Edwards

The Director

Pretty much the first thing we learned about Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, even well before the title was revealed, was that Gareth Edwards was going to direct. Edwards only has two feature directorial efforts under his belt, but they certainly made an impact. His first film, 2010's micro-budget Monsters, is a tense, unique take on the creature feature - one where the filmmaker handled all the visual effects himself. While that movie wasn't exactly a blockbuster hit, Edwards' talent caught the eye of Hollywood, and he was given the reins of 2014's Godzilla revamp. His attempt to bring the King of the Monsters back to the metroplex was a rousing success.

These two very different films showcase a varied skill set that should serve Edwards well on Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. He's shown he can tell a character-driven story, as well as one that relies on action, large-scale special effects, and spectacle - and both of those elements will come in handy in deep space. In Monsters, the titular beasts are relegated to the background, adding an extra layer of mood and tone to the story that is really about two people wandering the wilderness. This shows that he has the ability to get you emotionally invested in the people onscreen, without relying solely on flash to keep your attention. While Star Wars has always been full of eye candy, it's the characters that stick with you.

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