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Rogue One Trailer 2 Description!

Update: A secretly recorded footage of the trailer has been uploaded at the end. Watch it before Disney contacts us with a DMCA request!

It’s Star Wars Celebration! As expected, the second trailer for Rogue One has debuted, but only for attendees of the event.

Our Bothan spy “Stormtrooper Harry” happens to be in London, and was able to witness the exclusive 1-minute trailer. Here’s the description for all you freeloaders.

Enjoy!


The screen opens up with a glowing technical readout of some kind. The crowd cheers.

Next we see a little girl, young Jyn Erso, running around a green landscape. She looks up as a black shuttle, Director Krennic’s personal shuttle, roars overhead.

The scene shifts to the grown Jyn Erso, running again, this time in a chaotic tropical battlefield (likely the planet Scarif). In the background we see Cassian Andor and other rebel soldiers running alongside as explosions sprout all around.

Cue Jyn’s voice over: “There isn’t much time. Every day we grow weaker.”

Cut to captured Rebel pilots in their orange jumpsuits, being marched down an alley with hands on their heads. Captain Andor in disguise observes the prisoner march.

“While the day grows grimmer…”

Grim Death Troopers stride over the verdant landscape of Jyn’s childhood. Then the familiar close-up of a black trooper as something burns in the background, perhaps the Erso home.

Next, Mon Mothma and the rebellion high command looking up from the planning table in Yavin IV. Then black-clad troopers running through a jungle.

Back to Jyn: “We still have a chance. To make a real difference.” 

Quick shots in succession:

Regular stormtroopers wading through the idyllic surf on Scarif.

A couple of Imperial technicans, seated at what looks to be the Death Star’s firing control panel.

Director Krennic in his familiar pose on the Death Star’s bridge.

A ship flying through a desert canyon.

A huge four-winged shuttle folding its wings and coming in for a landing in a downtown alley, as a massive Star Destroyer looms overhead.

One of the Rogue One aliens cocking a blaster on Scarif, preparing for battle.

Then familiar scenes from the first trailer:

The four-winged shuttle blowing up.

Director Krennic striding through the water laden with dead bodies.

The hooded figure kneeling.

A bunch of stormtroopers and tank troopers running.

Baze fleeing from an explosion.

Jyn looking at the hovertank patrol.

Rebel soldiers trading fire with Death troopers.

A closeup of Chirrut, followed by the stick asskicking he gives to stormtroopers.

The Death Star superlaser dish being locked in place amid a flotilla of Star Destroyers.

Then a silence. A pause.

A blood-red technical readout is reflected off a gleaming floor. Standing in the middle is a foreboding figure, the Dark Lord of the Sith himself, as a familar breathing rasp fills the room.

The crowd erupts.

Title card: Rogue One. December.


Update:

Someone took a sly recording of the trailer itself! To shield us from the evil Disney Empire, watch it from a third-party site.

Stay tuned as we bring you more news from Star Wars Celebration!

Rogue One: What if it’s NOT a Hovertank?

We’re just 4 days away from Star Wars Europe, and what will surely be a Rogue One extravaganza!

So let’s take a look at one of the most anticipated vehicles this September, the Imperial hovertank from the trailer.

rogue-one-stromtroopers-and-tank

A straightforward beast, right? Massive side guns, sloping front, and heavily armored to withstand cowardly attacks from rebel scum. Definitely a tank.

Or is it?

Last May, we brought you the leaked images of the Rogue One Lego sets. And from there we saw a full-body photo of the tank:

Lego won’t allow us to post the leaked image. Click the pic to view the unblurred version from a hosting site.

rogue one lego hovertank leak orange box

Lego set 75152 turned out to be the vehicle in the trailer. However, it’s full-body appearance was different enough that people who didn’t see the trailer called it a speeder, instead of a hovertank.

In fact, before the Lego photos were leaked, we were able to obtain a description of the sets from noted Lego insider Just2Good. He described the set as an “Imperial speeder” a full three weeks before the photos came out.

Here’s a pretty good recreation of the Lego set, courtesy of Youtuber BrickWizard59:

lego rogue one hovertank leak

A cab, sloped front, and a flatbed. Do you know what that looks like to us? This:

humvee

Heck, it’s even carrying cargo at the back: those mysterious orange crates that seem to be scattered all over planet Scarif!

Here’s another custom build, courtesy of brick fan Rebel Builder:

custom lego rogue one hovertank

Take away the side guns and what you have is the Imperial version of the Humvee. An armored pickup truck for carrying cargo and patrolling dusty streets.

So if it’s a light pickup, what’s their version of a “Deuce”, a 6×6 truck? That would be the All-Terrain Armored Cargo Transport, or AT-ACT:

star-wars-celebration-at-act-rogue-one

And if the AT-ACT is “just” a truck, what would the Empire consider as a main battle tank? Nothing less than this:

atat cross-sectionA frontline tank and APC in one

Remember, these are the same guys who build mile-long destroyers and moon-sized battlestations. So when it comes to the Galactic Empire, what might look like a tank to us could be nothing more than a Humvee. A heavily armed and floating Humvee.

And if it’s not a “hovertank”, it won’t be the first time we all got something wrong…

stormtrooper hoverboard funny

Rogue One: 1st Wave of Titanium Vehicles Revealed

Historically, one of the biggest sources of Star Wars leaks has been merchandising. For Rogue One, we’ve already had the Edelweiss book leak, the Lego constructs, and the even juicier Lego ship sets (for which Lego’s legal team actually contacted us).

Today, we have yet another leak, and it comes from Stormtrooper Larry’s favorite toy line: the Hasbro Titanium series.

The Titanium line are 3-inch diecast models of Star Wars ships, all the way from the Original Trilogy to last year’s The Force Awakens. For 2016, we’ve received intel on what the first wave of Rogue One Titaniums will be.

These are:

The U-wing

This is the combination gunship / troop carrier of the Rebellion, similar to the old Republic LAAT

The TIE Striker

For this ship, the retail codename is “Raven”. However, since the Hotwheels 2-pack version is labeled “Raven Deluxe vs. X-wing”, our source may be wrong. The Raven may actually be the regular TIE fighter, while the TIE Striker might be under the codename Raven Deluxe

The black Imperial Shuttle

.This shuttle is NEITHER the old Lambda-class, nor the huge black ship that gets blown up in the trailer. It appears to be a totally new design we haven’t seen officially yet.

Codename “Vulture”

No further information

Codename “Owl”

No further information

Interestingly, this is the first time we’ve heard of the “Vulture” and the “Owl”, since neither were included in the leaked Italian version of the Lego May-Dec 2016 catalog.

During the prequel era of the 2000’s, the first Titanium leaks came from Hong Kong and China, as Hasbro’s partner factories sold the product prototypes on eBay. So if you’re looking for the first glimpse of a Rogue One Titanium, go eastward!

Update:

We’ve just received intel that toy manufacturer Mattel is cracking down on their similarly sized Hot Wheels Starships. The first mention of the “Raven” came from a product listing of Hot Wheels 2-ship packs, which had “Raven Deluxe vs X-wing” among the case.

US retailers have reportedly been told to scrub the product from their online listings. According to our source, 4-case shipments will now be comprised of:

2x Slave I vs. Jedi Starfighter
1x Star Destroyer vs. Mon Calamari Cruiser
1x Ghost vs. TIE Fighter (Rebels)

If this is accurate, they doubled the “Slave I vs Jedi Starfighter” packs to replace the “Raven vs. X-wing”. Or it may just be a smokescreen to shield the Rogue One pack that will be included in the 4-pack case.

Harrods to Showcase Original TFA Props

Just in time for Star Wars Celebration, the famous Harrods in London is joining the Star Wars bandwagon with its own exhibit!

The iconic department store is holding The Star Wars Gallery, which will feature authentic props used in The Force Awakens. 

Some of the original props include:

harrods falcon prop

  • Kylo Ren’s crossguard lightsaber
  • Rey’s scavenger staff
  • Luke’s lost lightsaber
  • Chewie’s bowcaster

Also on display are full-size figures of Captain Phasma in her chrome armor, a First Order stormtrooper, Rey’s desert outfit, BB-8 and more, to compete with the Rogue One exhibit in nearby London Exhibition Centre.

If that’s not enough, the posh department store also has a full-size mockup of the Falcon’s cockpit, as well as the ship’s iconic holochess table and wraparound sofa.

harrods falcon exhibit

Of course, this being Harrods, even their Falcon sofa isn’t as rundown as the real Star Wars Episode VIII prop teased by director Rian Johnson today:

A photo posted by Rian Johnson (@riancjohnson) on

A filthy sofa like this probably won’t get within 2 blocks of Harrods

But that’s not all. Fans with deep pockets can bring home a souvenir… and we don’t mean half-melted helmets or overpriced junk.

Propshop, the same outfit used by Pinewood Studios to create props for the new Star Wars movies, is on hand to offer something new: custom-made action figures.

For £1,595 (around $2,060), Propshop will do a 3-D scan of your body onsite using their “photogrammetry” system. The rig is comprised of 50 high-resolution cameras, the same technology used to capture the cast of TFA for merchandising. At that price, it isn’t just custom… it’s bespoke, as the British would say. It takes 12 weeks to create one figure.

The full-body scans will form the template for your very own action figure, around the same size of Jakks Pacific’s 18-inch Big Figs line. There are three TFA models to choose from: First Order stormtrooper, T-70 X-wing pilot, and TIE Fighter pilot. They come in male and female versions

harrods propshop custom figure.jpg

If that sounds a tad expensive, you can just ogle the exhibit like the freeloading scavenger you are. Entrance to the Star Wars Gallery is free, but on an appointment basis.

The exhibit runs at the fourth floor of Harrods London from July to August 21. So if you’re in the UK for Star Wars Celebration Europe, make sure to drop by Harrods and book your time slot!

 

Rogue One: Interview with a Former Production Crew

Now that it’s July, we’re just two weeks away from Star Wars Celebration, and what will surely be a Rogue One extravaganza!

If you can’t wait that long, Stormtrooper Larry interviewed a former film crew member during Rogue One’s initial production last year.

Our low-level source, whom we’ll call “Monty” is low enough in the production hierarchy that he can’t offer any plot leaks or earth-shattering revelations. However, what Monty provides is a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at what filming the movie was like.

What exactly did you do in Rogue One?

I can’t be more specific, but let’s just say I worked under the Director of Photography.

When did you sign on?

I signed the contract first quarter last year. To get us hyped up for the shoot, they showed a short pre-production clip. It was a slow pan of a green planet, then a TIE fighter entered the frame. As the camera followed the fighter soaring over the planet, the view swiveled up to show the Death Star in the distance!

We understand you can’t tell us any leaks or spoilers about Rogue One.

Yes. When you sign on, there’s a thick Non-Disclosure binder. It basically says to keep mum about the whole project for four years, or else Lucasfilm and Lunak (Heavy Industries Ltd, the production name behind Rogue One) can take legal action against you. Even after filming has wrapped up.

Without spoiling anything, can you share a memorable scene from production?

You know how the prequels got a lot of flak for being full of green-screen? Well in Rogue One it’s really old school. We built a giant sandbox in the backlot (of Pinewood Studios in the UK, where Rogue One was filmed).

All I can say is it’s a beach scene. The actual “sea” part of the beach was shot elsewhere, but the rest of the footage, including a coastal battle, was shot in a heavily cordoned area in Buckinghamshire. We even had to wait for the perfect weather to film that scene. It’s going to be incredible on the big screen.

We also marry practical effects with CGI. For example, there’s a scene that takes place in a rundown urban setting. Think Baghdad or Syria. Instead of using a chroma key backdrop (green screen), we actually built physical store fronts and staged real explosions. The CGI part comes from the units taking part in the battle.

I believe combining old-school props with digital VFX is the best formula. Instead of staring at a green curtain, the cast interacts with physical props. It immerses them in this galaxy far, far away and enables them  to act more convincingly. When the good guys flinch from an explosion, they’re not acting. It’s a real reaction caught on camera. Contrast that with films like  The Jungle Book, which was all green screened inside a soundstage.

For you, what was the best part of production?

Besides being able to put Star Wars on my resume? (Laughs).

Well I wasn’t lucky enough to be part of the camera crew that filmed the beach scene on a tropical island abroad. But I did get to visit RAF Cardington (a historic air base in the UK). We turned this giant hangar into a set, and we did so with great care since it was an airship shed with a history dating back to World War I!

We even used active service members from the RAF and Army Air Corps as extras. I can’t reveal their roles, let’s just say it was a natural fit for them.

And what was the worst part of production, if any?

Well we used an IMAX camera, an Arri Alexa 65. It shot tremendously beautiful footage on ultra widescreen 65mm film in 6k resolution. The large format simply blows away 35mm film. However to do that it needed a LOT of light, and it was a massive pain to set up the gobos and stage lights to get the lighting just right.

It’s also a fairly new camera with a limited selection of lenses. So if we wanted to zoom in, for example, we had to physically move the unit instead of using a zoom lens. The grips (in charge of the dollies and rigging) and the gaffers (in charge of the lights) really earned their pay.

What can you tell us about the reshoots?

There’s nothing much to say that hasn’t been said already.

Most of the film crew is the same, but they had to look for new extras. That was assigned to Twickenham Film Studios, and they put out a casting call last month. We were able to poach the casting director who did Harry Potter, War Horse and Kingdom of Heaven. Since the reshoots will be in Pinewood, anyone interested to be a “moving prop” should have the legal right to work in the UK.

We did have a good laugh when the tabloids said Chris (McQuarrie) was “taking over” the reshoots. There’s such a thing as the Director’s Guild, and one of the basic rules is that there can only be one director per film. There are exceptions when the directors previously worked together like the Wachowski brothers. The Han Solo film belongs in that category since (directors) Phil Lord and Chris Miller co-directed the Lego movie.

Do you know anything about Star Wars Episode VIII?

Nope, totally different production company and film crew. About the only shared resource we have in common is the physical location, Pinewood Studios, and specialist production outfits like the prop makers.

However, the photography crew all winced when we heard their IMAX was damaged during filming in Ireland. If it’s anything like our Alexa unit, it’s going to be rare, expensive and hard to replace, since the cameras are in extremely short supply.

What was it like to work with Gareth Edwards?

I’m low enough on the menu that I didn’t get to work with him personally. My crew reported to Doug Fraser, the director of photography who also did Zero Dark Thirty.

That said, the crews have tremendous respect for Gareth. This is the guy who did Monsters on a tight wallet, with an off-the-shelf Sony EX-3 and a regular Nikon lens. Hell, the rental, transportation and insurance charges of our IMAX camera alone cost more than that movie’s entire budget!

Do you have a message for Star Wars fans?

Star Wars has the magical ability to transport you to a different galaxy.

When you watch Rogue One for the second or third time, look beyond the planets and try to peer behind the scenes. You’ll find that the production process can be even more amazing than the finished film.

The good guys are actually operating out of a historic airship hangar used by the RAF, and that tropical planet is actually the concrete backlot of a studio in Iver Heath!

Monty” would like to greet his wife Mrs. M a happy anniversary. “either in the last month or the next two months.” Not because he forgot the exact date, but because he can’t be more specific.

 

Rogue One: Analyzing the New Characters from the EW Reveal

A few hours ago there was a disturbance in the Force, as if millions of fans cried out in surprise. That’s because Entertainment Weekly has just released the shizz about Rogue One!

Since everybody’s already posting about the new characters, we’ll avoid rehashing the same content. Instead, let’s analyze the new characters and what they mean for the movie.

Jyn Erso

rogue one jyn erso window

According to Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy, “she has been detained [by the Rebellion] and is being given an opportunity to be useful. And by being useful, it may commute her sentence…

Remember the KeepR1Dark leakKeepR1Dark leak? That mysterious poster, though debunked, claimed that Jyn was caught shipjacking by the Rebellion:

Our hero Jyn Erso is caught trying to steal a rebel fighter and is taken into custody. When her background is revealed she’s given the choice of going on a mission to the planet to see what kind of weapons are being tested or being turned over to bounty hunters to be turned into the Empire for the substantial price on her head.

Saw Gerrera

saw gerrera rogue one.jpg

Along with his sister, Steela, he fought alongside Darth Vader — back when the Sith lord was just an impetuous young Jedi named Anakin Skywalker. In the episode A War on Two Fronts, which aired in October 2012, Saw and Steela were part of an insurgent group being unofficially trained by Anakin, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and the padawan Ahsoka Tano. 

  • As always, the excellent folks at MakingStarWars got good set intel… the production crew nicknamed him “Castro” probably in reference to Che Gueverra, from where “Saw Gerrera” may have come from
  • Why is his appearance different? Our guess is the trailer was a flashback, when a young rebellious Jyn may have bumped into him (If you keep fighting, what will you become?) Later on we see the older, slightly unhinged Gerrera… who’s fighting his own war independent of the Rebellion.

Director Orson Krennic

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (Ben Mendelsohn) Ph: Film Frame ©Lucasfilm LFLOn the opposing side, this villain is an ambitious Imperial apparatchik who intends to use his squad of Deathtroopers to pulverize the Rebel uprising and ascend into the Emperor’s graces – while hopefully avoiding the wrath of his enforcer, Darth Vader.

The Rogue One Visual Story guide leak was right… the only thing it lacked was Krennic’s first name. At this point however, it’s still not clear exactly what he is Director of. The title is commonly used for government institutions (like the FBI and CIA), and not the military.

It also quashes any EU wishes of him being an analogue of Grand Admiral Thrawn, though he may have the same tactical brilliance.

Galen Erso

Jyn’s estranged father is like the galactic version of nuclear pioneer J. Robert Oppenheimer, with doomsday knowledge that is sought by both the Empire and the Rebellion. “He’s one of those people that has insight into you know specific aspects of just how the universe works,” says Hart. Where has Galen been, if Jyn has been on her own for years? “The circumstances of how the family got to the state that it’s in is something that we probably don’t want to share right now,”

  • Doomsday knowledge is clearly a reference to the Death Star. This reinforces the rumors that Mad Mikkelsen is a weapons designer who refined the original Geonosian blueprint and made the Death Star possible.
  • It’s also funny how Mikkelsen outed his character when he signed that “Galen” autograph way back in September 2015.
  • Out of all the major characters revealed in EW, only Galen didn’t have a photo. It’s possible his appearance may be disheveled and deranged after many years in Imperial custody. He could also be the hooded figure in the trailer.

 

Chirrut and Baze

Not to be cynical assholes, but our two Asian characters don’t just represent galactic diversity —  they’re a shrewd move on Disney’s part to make the Star Wars brand a cultural phenomenon in China, where it’s much less known compared to the rest of the world.

K-2SO

rogue one k2so

Told ya :p

 

Entertainment Weekly

Finally, why was EW the exclusive publication to reveal the characters? It’s because the magazine carried Disney’s propaganda regarding the Rogue One reshoots last June 3.

Remember how EW released Disney’s spin that:

  • The new scenes were for character development, “mostly talking in cockpits”
  • There is no “toning down”of action scenes, contrary to fan fears

The funny thing is, Lucasfilm hired a noted James Bond stunt coordinator right after that. You don’t hire guys like those for quiet “character building” scenes in cockpits.

So it seems Entertainment Weekly finally got their reward after helping Disney with damage control.

CBS News: “Celebrities Pay Tribute to STAR WARS Actor Anton Yelchin”

This morning, the world woke up to the news that Star Trek actor Anton Yelchin died in a freak accident.

Everybody that is, except for CBS News.

Stormtrooper Larry was sipping his morning stimcaf, pretending to work, when he came across this headline at 9 am EST:

anton yelchin star wars cbs star trek celebrities headlineIronically, CBS owns the TV rights to Star Trek

While the story itself was accurate, the title was not. Perhaps the reporter, Andrea Park, happens to be a Star Wars fan, and the headline was just a Freudian slip about her sci-fi preference.

To be fair to Ms. Park, there are similarities between the two franchises:

  • Both are science fiction films set in space
  • Both begin with the word “Star”
  • And more importantly, both were directed by J.J. Abrams

We live in an era where two great space franchises, which are historically at odds with each other, were directed by the SAME man. Not to knock off J.J. or anything (he’s a life-long SW fan after all), but it shows how Hollywood tends to play it safe.

It also makes us think of the implications if a central Star Wars character also departed. No doubt the story would change drastically, just as it did for Paul Walker and the F&F franchise.

Han-Solo-OldExcept for one character, that is.

In the case of Star Wars, it doesn’t even have to be a main character. Remember that John Williams is almost pushing 85, and we can’t imagine a SW episode without his iconic score. So let’s hope that nothing unfortunate happens to the people behind our beloved franchise.

As for Anton Yelchin, we wish him a clear warp jump as he makes his journey to the great beyond. Rest in peace Lt. Chekov.

Update: The original story has been taken down. It was up for approximately 45 minutes before the buzzkills at CBS were alerted. It’s still indexed on Google though.

Oh well, back to work.

EXCLUSIVE: The Latest on Rogue One Actor Donnie Yen

Last month, we reported that actor Donnie Yen ((甄子丹) will go back to London for Rogue One, even before news of the reshoots broke.

Yesterday, we learned that Chirrut is back in the UK to shoot additional scenes.

Bothan spy “Peter Chang” says Donnie left during the past week, and is now be inside the guarded walls of Pinewood Studios in London.

“The guy is very low-key. Despite being one of Asia’s highest earning celebrities, he doesn’t travel with PAs. He and Cissy (Donnie’s wife Cecilia Wang 汪詩詩) often travel by themselves and carry their own luggage. So his departure from HK wasn’t picked up by the media.”

Taking on the role of Chirrut

In the official cast photo and trailer, Disney took great pains to emphasize Chirrut as a staff-wielding warrior. That’s because the role was specifically tailored for him.

“Not many people know that Donnie is a wushu world champion. Before he branched out into the MMA, wushu was his life. His mother founded a wushu school in Boston and he was sent off to Beijing Sports University for further training. So handling a wushu long stick is second-nature to Donnie,” says Chang. “In fact I wouldn’t be surprised if he choreographed the fight with the stormtroopers himself.”

However, even the 52-year old needs a breather every now and then. “From what I heard, Donnie had to take a break after one particular fight scene for Rogue One last October. The cause wasn’t specified, but it’s likely because of his recurring spinal injury.” Yen suffered serious neck and spine injuries while filming a local action movie three years ago, a mishap that’s plagued him since.

May madness

According to this Far East Bothan, Chirrut was really busy over the past month. “Donnie had a full schedule in May. Most of it was booked for XXX: The Return of Xander Cage, where he plays the main villain after Jet Li backed out.”

“The XXX shoot wrapped up in the third week of May, and Donnie flew home to Hong Kong. The Rogue One reshoots weren’t public knowledge yet, but he was the first to clue in fans when he was interviewed by Oriental Daily News (an HK publication) during a local event. He said he was due back in London for additional Rogue One photography.”

“He then flew to Japan for a quick shoot for a German brand. That was when news about the Rogue One reshoot went public.”

Pre-Rogue One R&R

In preparation for his Rogue One duties, Donnie took some time off to unwind. This suggests he may be in the UK for a while. “From Japan it was back to HK for three days. Then it was off to Singapore for a much deserved vacation with his staff.” Donnie has his own production company, Bullet Films.

donnie yen rogue one newsDonnie Yen (in blue shirt) with the Bullet Films crew in Universal Studios Singapore

“He and his wife treated over three dozen staff members to a holiday. They stayed at Resorts World Sentosa where the couple are brand ambassadors, and visited Universal Studios. Donnie doesn’t normally splurge, so this could mean he’ll be gone for a while and made the most of his break in Asia.”

Star Wars Celebration Europe,  happening on July 15-17, coincides with the reshoots. So it’s possible Donnie and the Rogue One crew will attend the event and have their stay extended.

“For Donnie, it was a well-deserved break before a jampacked June and July for Rogue One. But he made sure his employees got to have enjoy the same break he did, and that’s the wonderful thing about him.”

The Star Wars secrecy

Chang says that out of Donnie’s films, Rogue One has got to be the most secretive. “From Ip-Man to Monkey King, Donnie loved to post teasers about his projects. In fact, for XXX he posted updates almost daily. But there was almost none of that for Rogue One.”

Actually, Donnie did post an update: he was the first to leak the Death Trooper and Shore Trooper helmets on his Instagram account last August:

donnie yen death trooper rogue one leak

The image was quickly taken down, but not before the entire Internet saved it. Within hours, everyone from Entertainment Weekly to The UK Mirror was talking about the new helmets. And Chang says that might be the reason for Donnie’s subsequent silence.

“From what I heard, the PR agency behind Lunak Heavy (the production name for Rogue One) hands out penalty cards to members who violate the non-disclosure policy. And yes, not even cast members are exempt. So that’s probably why he’s been mum on all things Rogue One ever since.”

However, even Chirrut has a weakness. “The Yen kids love Star Wars. But it’s the middle one, James, who’s an absolute fan. The little guy has everything from costumes to lightsabers, and he celebrated his birthday with a Star Wars-themed party. I don’t see how Donnie could NOT tell him about Rogue One and expect some peace and quiet at home. So if you want the real scoop, ask James!”

Rogue One and the Chinese market

Despite Donnie’s (as well as his wife’s Cissy’s) spoiler gaffes, Chang believes his role Chirrut is critical to the film’s success — perhaps even more so than the other characters.

“China is the world’s 2nd biggest box office market, second only to the US. What better way to penetrate that market than through the star of Ip Man?”

The Ip Man film franchise is one of the highest-grossing films in Asia. In fact, for regions like Hong Kong and mainland China, the name has more recall than Star Wars. “Remember that PRC (China) was a closed society during the ’70s and ’80s when Star Wars became a global phenomenon. That’s why Hollywood is trying its best to penetrate the market, by roping in recognizable names like Donnie.”

In fact, China is so important to Disney that Rogue One features not just one, but two Asian celebrities. Chinese actor and director Jiang Wen plays Baze, a freelance assassin. While Donnie captures the pan-Asian market like Hong Kong and Malaysia where Ip Man set new records, Wen’s inclusion is directly aimed at the mainland and its 1.3 billion audience.

The Chinese market is still a mystery to the West. While the recently released Warcraft movie bombed in the US, it became a box office hit in China, outgrossing even The Force Awakens within five days.

This is the reason why Donnie Yen (and his compatriot Jiang Wen) are the Mouse’s only hope for galactic success in China.


Special thanks to “Peter Chang” for the exhaustive intel, as well as Bullet Films Productions member “Agent Wai” for confirming some of the details for this story!

EXCLUSIVE: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at Episode VIII from an Alleged Production Insider

A couple of days ago, we brought you the sensational Jedi History 1.1 lesson from KY10REY, who purports to be a production insider for Star Wars: Episode VIII.

Today, Stormtrooper Larry sat down with KY10REY to find out more about the film. Whether his claims are true or not, we leave up to you.

We’ve reserved the juiciest stuff at the end.

Who is KY10REY?

He first appeared in February 2016, when principal photography for Episode VIII started. KY10REY claims to be part of the production crew at Pinewood Studios with insider knowledge of the film’s progress.

Why should we listen to him?

KY10REY seems to have advance knowledge of what Space Bear Industries, the front name for Episode VIII, is up to.

Last March, he posted the scouting sets for the Ireland leg of the shoot, a full two months before it happened:

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Then in early May, he announced that Adam Driver was going to join Mark Hamill and Daisy Ridley in Ireland for the Ahch-To shoot, and even broke down their scenes by location.

Adam did arrive one week later on May 13:

ky10rey leak spoiler

With that out of the way, let’s get to the juicy stuff. Here’s the exclusive intel from KY10REY.

On Jedi History 1.1

  • A fair number of readers have commented on the poor prose and scriptwriting, with one commenting that “if this is a leak, it sounds like it was transcribed or overheard.”
  • That’s because it is — it came from a storyboard. KY10REY says “phones, cameras and tablets are not allowed… but pen and paper are”. He was actually writing down what he saw from memory as best as he could.
  • The tree on Ahch-To is really old, “even older than the Jedi”
  • “If you look at the tree from a vertical aspect, it’s actually not complete.” That’s because he claims that “most static items are just reference holders for ILM”. Presumably, the tree will be enhanced, or even have its appearance changed outright through VFX.

episode 8 tree leak

On the Ireland filming

  • The shooting schedule included a 4-day safety window in case they ran into inclement weather
  • Thankfully, the notoriously uncooperative Irish climate turned out to be good, so much so that “we had to use our poor weather truck”
  • This specialized vehicle was probably designed to create rain effects, during what we presume is the climactic battle between Luke and Rey and the Knights of Ren (which KY10REY can’t confirm or deny)
  • The waterfall at Malin Head will make a brief appearance, though parts of the scene are actually NOT shot in Ireland but someplace else (we’ll cover this in a future article)
  • Right after wrapping up in Ireland, part of the crew were sent to Germany and Italy to scout locations for the next movie, the Han Solo anthology film.

What’s happening now

  • Filming is back in the UK, although whether in Pinewood or other locations KY10REY won’t say
  • One of the scenes in the past week required a lot of pyrotechnics, which caused complaints among locals
  • The schedule this week has been so intense that an extra rest day was ordered, “that’s why Mark (Hamill) was mostly silent on Monday and Tuesday, but pretty active today”
  • There will be a break in filming come July so certain cast members can attend Star Wars Celebration in London

What we can expect

  • Despite director Rian Johnson’s home stretch post, the film has “several miles left to go”
  • The official wrap-up party for the production crew is still two months away
  • Rey had 42 minutes in The Force Awakens, but almost double the screen-time for Episode VIII

And the really juicy nuggets:

  • Expect the Episode VIII title reveal in the first week of November
  • The Rogue One main trailer will drop four weeks after the title reveal
  • There will also be a brief (2-second) teaser for Episode VIII
  • There were on-set rumors of more trees and seeds being taken to different planets, as well as mentions of Ben Kenobi. However “we are not filming any of that, so if true they must be for something else, like a backstory or tie-in comic.”

Note: In the past hour, several readers have asked why the Rogue One trailer is debuting too close to the movie, rather than during Star Wars Celebration. The key word is main trailer. TFA also had several trailers, but the most complete one (the international version) dropped on December 9, 2015, a mere one week before the movie itself.

Our guess is, shorter domestic trailers are used to generate hype in North America, where Star Wars is already familiar. However, for other regions where the franchise isn’t a cultural phenomenon (like China), Disney has a longer version. The newer, longer cut also helps sustain the momentum in the US, since it features extra footage not seen by American viewers. Anyway, we’ll just ask KY10REY about it when he’s able to sneak out once more.


Finally, KY10REY says he gets asked a lot about Luke and Rey, but not newcomer Kelly Marie Tran, known on set as “Pocket Rocket”.

Why should we pay more attention to her?

“Because her character will have a pivotal role towards the end. Her role was rewritten to increase screen time.”

We have more intel from our secret rendezvous, but Stormtrooper Larry has to get back to work (damn Powerpoint slides won’t do themselves). We’ll reserve those for another post if our alleged Bothan insider gives the green light.

KY10REY will release the next installment, Jedi History 2.1, before the end of June. So stay tuned!

UPDATE: For readers in the UK, the Metro newspaper will be publishing their own interview in tomorrow’s issue. Scoop a copy and see if they have different intel.

In the meantime, check out our own story how Ben Solo fell to the dark side!