A Star Wars Story’s Main Cast Almost Looked Completely Different

Fans may never know what characters like Ria Talla, Lunak, and Senna would have added to “Rogue One,” but it’s safe to say that they were saved from a grizzly end. The noble sacrifice of Jyn Erso and company on Scarif in an effort to send out the Death Star plans paints the team as galaxy-wide heroes. However, the team behind “Rogue One” feared that this outcome would hamper the film, only to be surprised by Disney’s response to the gripping conclusion. 

The ending originally had the characters survive their treacherous ordeal, with Gareth Edwards explaining to Empire (via Gizmodo), “The very first version, they didn’t [die]. In the screenplay. And it was just assumed by us that we couldn’t do that. ‘They’re not going to let us do that.’ So I was trying to figure out how this ends where that doesn’t happen.” Among sharing the script, Edwards’ colleagues felt that leaving the heroes alive at the end didn’t make much sense. Thankfully, this sentiment was also held by Lucasfilm and Disney executives alike. “We thought we weren’t going to be allowed to but Kathy [Kennedy] and everyone at Disney were like, ‘Yeah it makes sense/ I guess they have to because they’re not in ‘A New Hope,'” Edwards continued. “And so from that point on we had the license.” 

Suffice it to say, the decision was the right one. Even if getting to this point meant removing some potentially interesting characters, the final result birthed a “Star Wars” entry that remains a fan-favorite. 

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