As we get deeper into the month of December, the last blockbuster of 2016 gets closer and closer. We're talking about Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, which will be a game changer for the galaxy far, far away. Rogue One marks Disney's first attempt at a standalone Star Wars film, and with it comes a ton of expectations. But Rogue One's director Gareth Edwards also has the ability to make bold artistic choices, as the film doesn't have to play by the same rules as the main installments. In fact, it appears that Edwards took a ton of inspiration from war movies, which should be a huge change in aesthetics from what we're used to seeing in Star Wars.

Gareth Edwards recently sat down with the good folks at Collider to discuss all things Rogue One. He eventually revealed how war movies and documentaries influenced his directing, saying:

When we started, the studio was like, 'Well, how do these movies differ from the saga films?' One of the early experiments we did was taking real war photography, pictures of Vietnam, conflicts in the Middle East, and World War II. And we literally photoshopped rebel helmets on the tops of the real soldiers. We looked at this stuff and it was really effective and you're like, 'Oh my God, I really feel for these guys'. There was something about the realism of that we showed it to [Disney] and everyone was like, 'Go make that movie. That looks great.'

Holy crap. This is a major first for the franchise, and I couldn't be more excited for December 16th.

If Gareth Edwards is to be believed (and I'm sure he is), then Rogue One will be in stark juxtaposition to most Star Wars movies, especially the prequel trilogy. Star Wars has typically been a series of films which looks shiny and perfect. Because the franchise uses groundbreaking visual affects, the movies understandably have a sheen and gloss that help it look awesome and out of this world.

rogue one: a star wars story

But Rogue One will be a more gritty and realistic adaptation of the galaxy far, far away. Because the motley crew of rebels who star in the movie are essentially ground troops. They're not commanders or fancy pilots, but grunts who are physically attempting to steal the plans to the Death Star. Lightsabers won't be used, and blasters and melee weapons will be handled by characters who don't have a connection to The Force or Skywalker blood.

It should be interesting to see how Rogue One ends up influencing Star Wars moving forward. If Gareth Edward's exciting vision for the film is well received, we may enter a new age of Star Wars films. The Force Awakens marked the return to practical effects, but perhaps things will continue to get more gritty and realistic in the future.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story will fly into theaters on December 16th.

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