Why Darth Vader Wears Different Suits During The Star Wars Saga

darth vader star wars

In just a week and a half, the next Star Wars movie will be upon is. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story will make history as the first Star Wars standalone film, a tradition that should come around every two years for the foreseeable future. And while Rogue One will focus on a new cast of characters unconnected to the Skywalker family line, a few classic characters will also make appearances. Chief among them is Darth Vader, who we haven't seen since his brief (and semi ridiculous) scene in Revenge of the Sith. Diehard fans will notice that Vader's signature suit varies from film to film, and we now know why.

John Knoll is a visual effects supervisor who worked on the prequel trilogy, as well as the remastered version of the original films. He's also an executive producer and helped craft the story of Rogue One. Knoll recently sat down with the folks at ComicBook.com, and revealed why Darth Vader's costume has variations in the film series.

I figure he's got more than one version of those outfits. The reason the armor looks a little grungier and dented up in A New Hope is you're not going to wear your nice armor into battle. You're gonna wear your beater armor into battle. Then, if you're going to go talk to the Emperor or something you put on the nice shiny one, show some respect.

That's right, Darth Vader has a space aged closet filled with his signature suits. It's basically the coolest closet in the history of the galaxy.

While Darth Vader isn't a character that you'd necessarily associate with respect and cleanliness, he's clearly a creature of habit. Trained by the strict Jedi Order, Anakin Skywalker has always had to report to someone. And despite being a terrifying villain in the Star Wars lore, Vader has a higher up- The Emperor. When meeting with Palpatine in the flesh, Vader would wear a suit with more shine and polish, rather than the one he uses to force choke subordinates and kick ass in battle.

One thing is clear: Rogue One better have the appropriate amount of Darth Vader, and the right type of Vader. The last time Star Wars audiences saw the Darth Vader we know and love was back in Return of the Jedi. The menacing villain turned out to have a heart underneath, and sacrificed himself to save Luke and the Galaxy.

But Vader in Rogue One is at the height of his villainy, which is exactly what audiences want to see. Additionally, visual affects have been vastly improved since Return of the Jedi, so we're ready to see Darth Vader use the force in a big way. We're going to need to see some badass telekinesis and lightsaber action, or people will be seriously pissed.

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

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.