Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is the first anthology film in the main franchise from Lucasfilm, and as such, is the first to not have the term "episode" thrown in the title somewhere.
While other Star Wars movies have undoubtedly had other titles that fans refer to them as — calling it Return of the Jedi instead of Episode VI, for example — Rogue One simply exists as just that. Talking to Empire magazine, director Gareth Edwards revealed why they chose that title for the film and what it all meant in the greater context of Star Wars lore.
"‘Rogue One’ is a military call sign to some extent, but this is the first film that’s gone off-piste and is not part of the saga — or the Anakin story — so it’s the ‘rogue’ one, you know," Edwards said.
The military call that Edwards is talking about has been referenced in previous Star Wars films, too. The squadron of Snowspeeder pilots that were featured in Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back were nicknamed Rogue. Edwards is more than aware of the term and said he included it as a nod to the film.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story stars Felicity Jones as Rebel soldier Jyn Erso. The film follows her and her band of co-rebels as they try to steal the plans to the Death Star. It hits theaters Dec. 16.