We now know the *original* ending of “Rogue One” and it is shockingly different

Hello. First and foremost, I really, truly loved Rogue One. I did! It was not only a great Star Wars movie, but all around, it was a great movie that packed in lots of action and emotional punches. That being said, I can’t help but find myself ridiculous curious over the reshoots the film went through, and what *might* have been the planned original ending of Rogue One.

Because, we’re all seen the movie, and we’ve seen the trailers, and we just KNOW in our hearts that the original ending was completely different…right?

Well, if you’ve had this hunch, too, congratulations! You are correct, as the ending we saw in Rogue One was not the planned ending of the film. The original ending didn’t have a whole lot of death (stars) and destruction. It was actually happy.

Earlier today, Empire published a podcast, where they sat down and talked to Rogue One director, Gareth Edwards — and the podcast has since been pulled, but will pop up on the internet on December 26th. Before it disappeared, though, Gizmodo was able to grab lots of quotes from it, and we learn that once upon a time, Jyn and Cassian (and literally everyone else in the movie) don’t die at the very end!!

"The very first version, they didn’t [die]," Edwards explains. "It was just assumed by us [the Rogue One team] 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. And then everyone read [the script] and there was this feeling of like, ‘They’ve got to die, right?’ And everyone was like, ‘Yeah, can we?’"

Though everyone knew this was how the movie needed to end, Edwards wasn’t sure Disney and Lucasfilm would go for it.

“We thought we weren’t going to be allowed to but Kathy [Kennedy, President of Lucasfilm] and everyone at Disney were like ‘Yeah it makes sense/I guess they have to because they’re not in A New Hope.’ And so from that point on we had the license [to end with the death of the heroes].”

Whoa. But looking at it from a story standpoint — and a Star Wars standpoint — while it’s hella sad, it does feel like a necessary ending. The success and sacrifice of Jyn, Cassian, and everyone else with the Rebellion means that one day, a kid from Tatooine can blow up the Death Star.

"I kept waiting for someone to go, ‘You know what? Could we just film an extra scene where we see Jyn and Cassian, they’re okay and they’re on another planet?’" Edwards continued. "And it never came. No one ever gave us that note, so we got to do it."

And that’s how Rogue One found it’s big, dramatic, heart-pounding ending. While it makes us sob uncontrollably, it’s a damn good ending.

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