New Footage In The ‘Rogue One’ Teaser Trailer Hints At A Connection To The Prequels

With the rise of fan culture on the internet, it’s no surprise that the release of trailers has become almost as eagerly anticipated as the release of the films themselves. To feed into this hype, and to announce what date and time said trailers will drop, studios will release trailers for the trailers themselves. It’s all getting very meta, but sometimes those trailer-trailers will contain a snippet of new footage that contains an important piece of information.

This would be one of those times. Check out the latest Rogue One teaser below, and see if you can spot anything new:

The video may only be 15 seconds long, but it’s not all recycled footage, and there are some surprises for beady-eyed fans. Let’s count them out!

Link To The Prequels

The teaser opens as a ship departs from the Rebellion base, and the design is surprisingly familiar. In contrast to the clunky and block-ish ships of the original trilogy — and The Force Awakens — this vessel is streamlined and smooth, with a sharp double prow. This design is reminiscent of Padme Amidala’s ship in The Phantom Menace.

The two ships are very visually similar [Lucasfilm]

The two ships are very visually similar [Lucasfilm]

There are two possible reasons for this striking similarity. It’s possible that this is a plot point, as we never got an explanation for why the technology of the prequels seems so much more advanced than that of the original trilogy. For years fans have wondered if there was an in-universe reason for this — in contrast to the real-world reason being that our own CGI technology was more advanced than in the ’70s/’80s, and the movies made in the ’90s and ’00s reflect that.

It could be that, in order to bridge the continuity gap between the two trilogies, Rogue One will provide an explanation for this apparent inconsistency. Perhaps this is due to Imperial oppression, as the Empire hampered technological advancements and prevented planets under their rule from having access to high-end starships. This vessel could have been salvaged by the Rebel Alliance, and possibly altered to fulfill their combat needs.

Is this Jyn Erso’s ship? [Rogue One]

Or maybe this is just an aesthetic choice, to bring the designs of the prequel trilogy and those of the original trilogy closer together, and make all the films feel more coherent. Either way, this starship has a really neat design.

The Rebel Base Is Yavin IV

The first Rogue One trailer revealed the interior of the Rebel base Jyn Erso is taken to, and many fans already pointed out the similarities between the hangar bay and the one we saw in A New Hope. With this new external shot of the base, it’s now confirmed: This is Yavin IV, above which the first Death Star was destroyed.

We suspected as much, but it’s nice to have this confirmed by the distinctive pyramid structures on Yavin IV — this planet was filmed in Guatemala, using ancient Mayan temples for the Rebel base.

Yavin IV in 'A New Hope' [Lucasfilm]
Yavin IV in ‘A New Hope’ [Lucasfilm]

Setting parts of Rogue One on Yavin adds a sense of continuity, establishing this anthology film as a prologue to A New Hope. There’s a sense of dramatic irony present now too, in the fact that Mon Mothma sent a team out from Yavin to retrieve the Death Star plans, only to have that superweapon attack the Yavin base.

This also makes us wonder — if Mon Mothma was present at Yavin only days (or possibly weeks) before A New Hope — why she wasn’t there during the events depicted in Episode IV. Perhaps Rogue One will shed some light on what Mon Mothma was doing before her appearance in Return of the Jedi.

A Closer Look A K-2SO

Alan Tudyk’s engimatic ex-Imperial droid has the potential to be one of the most interesting parts of Rogue One. And now we finally have a closer look at him!

Alan Tudyk is K2SO in 'Rogue One' [Lucasfilm]
Alan Tudyk is K2SO in ‘Rogue One’ [Lucasfilm]

At Star Wars Celebration, Alan Tudyk spoke about his character, and why K2SO won’t be the cutesy, Rogue One equivalent of BB-8. Deadpan and honest to a fault, K-2SO is likely to provide a lot of the humor of the film — but you can expect it to be dark humor.

“He speaks his mind and says things that are really unsettling and honest.”

Tudyk also revealed that K-2SO isn’t one to go along with the procedures common to protocol droids. While C-3PO is fairly servile in comparison, Tudyk said that when asked to run an errand like fetching bags, K-2SO is most likely to simply respond: “No.” Which should make for some excellent moments of dry humor.

Chirrut Imwe Is A Serious Badass

There are a few other new shots, mostly of characters walking the streets of Jedha — . All this footage is pretty straightforward, but we did get a conclusion to the fight between Chirrut Imwe (Donnie Yen) and all those stormtroopers, which was teased in the first trailer. And it looks like a clear victory for the blind martial artist…

Chirrut Imwe beats down stormtroopers [Lucasfilm]

Although Chirrut believes strongly in the Force, he is not a Jedi, and his skill in combat can only be chocked up to practice and innate badassery. As Yen said of the character at Star Wars Celebration: He’s “the baddest fighters from Jedha.” This is going to be thrilling to see on the big screen, and here’s hoping we get to see more from Chirrut in the full length trailer on Thursday (maybe even teasing ).

For more from our Star Wars Celebration coverage, check out Rebels’ Sam Witwer explaining how Force users find one another…

…and tell us in the comments: What do you want to see in the next Rogue One trailer?


MP staff writer and editor. I talk about superheroes a lot. Sometimes I’m paid for it.