After months of rumors surrounding the extra footage and alternate takes in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, a new potential ending has been revealed, and it’s much sunnier than what actually happened to the Rebels.
Original screenwriter Gary Whitta told Entertainment Weekly the original plan was to give Jyn Erso and the rest of the Rebel soldiers an escape route after they managed to steal the plans to the Death Star.
“Jyn did survive,” Whitta said. “Cassian also survived. There were a lot of casualties on both sides, in both versions of the scripts.”
Whitta added, however, that the team always wanted the movie to end with the entire team dying on Scarif after Grand Moff Tarkin blows up the Empire’s base. The reason they had an alternate version of the ending was due to logistics. Early into the writing and production, they didn’t know if Lucasfilm and Disney were going to let them get away with such a bleak ending.
“If you’re going to give your life for anything, give your life for this, to destroy a weapon that going to kill you all anyway,” Whitta said. “That’s what we always wanted to do. But we never explored it because we were afraid that Disney might not let us do it, that Disney might think it’s too dark for a Star Wars movie or for their brand.”
If Disney and Lucasfilm had pushed for the cheerier version, here are some of the things people would have missed out on: Bodhi Rook, Chirrut Imwe and Baze Malbus wouldn’t have been in it. Jyn was a member of the Rebellion already, and not a street criminal who’s drafted to serve. K-2SO was already a member of the team and she commanded a group of soldiers with a Cassian Andor-type, according to Whitta.
Whitta came under fire in December after tweeting out similar thoughts following the film’s release. He quickly deleted the tweets, but it was obvious that even then, Whitta was confident the only way to successfully end the movie was to kill the story’s heroes and make their valiant efforts worth something.
The writer didn’t answer any questions about whether the alternate ending or different cuts of the movie would be available on the DVD, Blu-ray and digital releases. The digital HD version of the movie will be available to purchase on March 24. The Blu-ray and DVD versions will be released next week on April 4.