Is Disney ready for a progressive Star Wars?
Star Wars: Rogue One

Star Wars fans may be feeling a certain tremor in the force this week, with reports emerging of a hugely expensive reshoot planned over the summer.

The news comes from entertainment site Page Six, who are saying that Disney’s executives are apparently unhappy with the first cut of upcoming Star Wars universe spin-off Rogue One – and the film is set to undergo a series of reshoots.

According to their anonymous source:

“The execs at Disney are not happy with the movie, and Rogue One will have to go back into four weeks of expensive reshoots in July.”

How worried should Star Wars fans be about displeased executives?

The first trailer for December’s Rogue One: A Star Wars was released back in early April, and many – including us – were extremely pleased with what they saw.

The Gareth Edwards directed spin-off seemed to be darker in tone than The Force Awakens, whilst still retaining that all-important nod to the cinematic history (including an appearance by Mon Mothma) and the push of untraditional female protagonists.

It felt like Edwards (who previously directed Monsters and Godzilla) was building his own progressive sci-fi story. It just so happened to be in the same galaxy far, far away as this huge blockbuster franchise.

But is that what Disney signed up for, when they purchased the Star Wars brand from George Lucas back for a cool $4 billion? Possibly not.

Although there were initial worries from fans when Lucas handed over the keys to the Millennium Falcon, most looked at Disney’s work with Marvel as a sign of what was to come – and that still applies.

Marvel Studios has developed into a huge blockbuster franchise, spawning a generation of new and avid fans. But while the studio dishes out Captain America and Iron-Man stories with aplomb, it’s been criticised for the lack of pace on female-led stories, as well as any films without traditional white male leads as the top billing.

Perhaps this is just the deal you make with Disney when becoming their next big franchise? Blockbusters will be hugely popular, but asking your films to push or challenge their audiences is just not possible under the Mickey Mouse ears.

It could also be that we’re all jumping to conclusions here. Huge production blockbusters frequently undergo re-shoots and alterations. Helming big budget films is like steering a super-tanker, and the first cut was never going to be the complete package.

It’s not very ‘Jedi’ of us to let our feelings cloud our judgement on Disney’s Star Wars – especially after the rip-roaring good fun of The Force Awakens. But fans do get precious about their space adventures.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is set for release in cinemas on December 14


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