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The Star Wars franchise is massively popular franchise, with entire generations brought up on the galaxy far, far away. Darth Vader is the biggest icon from the property, and has appeared in a variety of mediums throughout the years. This includes a brief but thrilling appearance in Gareth Edwards' Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, although concept art reveals another glimpse at the beloved villain.
Darth Vader's story has been expanded greatly throughout the years, with the prequels and animated series revealing how Anakin Skywalker was eventually turned to the Dark Side. This includes his excruciating burns on Mustafar, with Rogue One revealing Vader's castle on the fiery planet. And it turns out the bacta tanks used to treat his condition were almost much more menacing. Check out the concept art below.
FOMO alert. While a bacta tank does it make it into the runtime of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, it's appearance is brief and far less creepy. But seeing Vader's body wrapped in the red used for Sith lightsabers is a powerful image. Unfortunately, it ended up on the cutting room floor.
The above image comes to us from the Instagram of Lucasfilm concept artist Christian Alzmann. Alzmann helps to establish a visual language for each addition to the galaxy far, far away-- including Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. His vision for Darth Vader's bacta tank is decidedly more unnerving, especially as the silhouette of Anakin Skywalker's mutilated body is visible. But in the end another vision for the setting and tank were used in the movie's theatrical cut.
Star Wars fans can re-watch Rogue One: A Star Wars Story on Disney+. You can use this link to sign up for the streaming service.
Darth Vader enters Rogue One for the first time over an hour into the story, and the Castle on Mustafar and the bacta tank are the first teases that the icon is finally approaching. But rather than a red tank that shows Vader's silhouette, it was bathed in blinding white light. And before long he was out and wearing his signature costume on the big screen.
The bacta tank made its Star Wars debut back in Empire Strikes Back. After Han saves Luke on the ice planet Hoth, Mark Hamill's signature hero is put into the tank while he recovers from his injuries. As for Anakin, he requires regular use of his own tank in order to treat his medical condition when not in the Vader armor. Poor guy.
Rogue One was the first Star Wars standalone movie, followed by the less successful Solo. Rogue One bridged the gap between the prequels and A New Hope, with the events of Gareth Edward's movie leading directly into Episode IV. This includes a young Leia, as well as Darth Vader's rampage through a troop of Rebel soldiers. Said sequence showed what the villain was truly capable of, and was a definite highlight of the film's runtime.
CinemaBlend will keep you updated on all things Star Wars, as the franchise continues to expand on Disney+. Be sure to check out our 2020 release list to plan your next movie experience.
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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.