Will The New ‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’ Trailer Blow The Darth Vader Load Too Early?

Have you heard the news? There’s a new Rogue One: A Star Wars Story trailer coming. Soon! Very soon. Next week in fact.

According to ABC listings, their hour-long Secrets of the Force Awakens: A Cinematic Journey special — set to air July 15 — will be accompanied with *drum roll* a “3-minute trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story“.

ABC Screencap [via Making Star Wars]
ABC Screencap [via Making Star Wars]

, and clocked in at just shy of two minutes. The teaser was tantalizingly brief, not giving away too much but introducing us to our hero Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) and the violence of intergalactic war.

From the looks of things the upcoming clip is going to be our first full length trailer for the upcoming Star Wars spin off, and there’s a lot of great potential for what we’ll be seeing. Our first look at Mads Mikkelsen’s Galen — — for example? We know what we want, and what we want is that.

But one thing that many fans were hoping to see in the first Rogue One teaser is yet to come to pass, and so may do so now. You know what we’re talking about…

Darth Vader

"Sooo.. how was school?" [Lucasfilm/Disney]

“Sooo.. how was school?” [Lucasfilm/Disney]

Ever since Darth Vader — the granddaddy of cinematic villains — was announced to be appearing in Rogue One the fanbase has been abuzz with the potential of seeing the corrupted Anakin Skywalker again, especially after those prequels.

Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens gave us a Vader-wannabe in the form of Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) — but . Given that in the current Star Wars chronology Vader is very dead, the most we got to see of him in The Force Awakens was Kylo waxing lyrical to his half melted skull, Hamlet style.

"Alas, poor Vader! ... I knew him, Hux..." [Lucasfilm/Disney]

“Alas, poor Vader! … I knew him, Hux…” [Lucasfilm/Disney]

But Rogue One will bring back Darth Vader in the flesh (or lack-thereof) for the first time since 1983’s Return of the Jedi (not counting Revenge of the Sith, in which Anakin appeared as Vader very briefly towards the conclusion). The build up to this is almost as exciting as the moment we saw , more than 30 years since his last cinematic outing.

Whilst we didn’t get to see him in the first Rogue One trailer, Vader’s appearance was not-all-that-subtly teased by the notes of the Imperial March blending with the iconically heavy breathing we have come to associate with Darth Vader. Well, him and asthmatics.

Will Darth Vader Appear In The Rogue One Trailer?

So, will we see the big bad of the Star Wars universe appearing in the new Rogue One trailer? Or, more importantly, should we?

The Father-Son disco was a big hit [Lucasfilm/Disney]

The Father-Son disco was a big hit [Lucasfilm/Disney]

Trailers are a tricky thing. Put in too little and consumers can get the wrong end of the stick regarding what exactly the movie is about. Put in even a little too much and the hive mind that is the internet will be able to work out major plot points and splice together key sequences from analysing the various trailers, clips, set photos and cast interviews. It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it.

So, should Darth Vader appear in the Rogue One trailer, or should they hold off on the unveiling until the movie itself? There’s a few reasons taking the latter path could be a good thing, the main one being the fear of giving too much away.

Whilst some fans might like to analyse every bit of material in order to know as much about the film as possible, others much prefer to not have things spoiled for them. That’s why making spoiler GIFs has become an internet pastime, and your Facebook friends almost lynched you for posting about Han Solo (Harrison Ford) kicking the bucket in The Force Awakens (c’mon, it’s been SEVEN MONTHS, we’re allowed to talk about it now).

For example… [Lucasfilm/Disney]

Of course it would be pretty easy to just chuck a few scenes of Vader storming around looking ominous into the Rogue One trailer without giving away too much. And having the half-melted Anakin Skywalker making an appearance would be an excellent way of quickly cementing the context of the movie for casual viewers who might be unaware of where exactly in the Star Wars mythology Rogue One rests.

One way or another, Rogue One is going to be a big hitter at the box office. Maybe not quite as big a hitter as Star Wars 7 was, but it’ll get up there. For most fans of the franchise we don’t need to see Darth Vader in advance, knowing that we’ll get to witness the battle-hardened Imperial Commander in action will be enticing enough.


But let’s be honest — it’s Disney. They’ve got merchandise to shift and a whole new generation to make aware of just how freaking ominous Darth Vader is. We’ll probably see him in the Rogue One trailer, even if only momentarily.

What do you think? Do you think we should see Darth Vader in the promotional material, or should the reveal be saved for the movie itself?

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story lands December 16, 2016.

Sources: ABC Listings,


MP Staff Writer, thinking too much about comic books since 1992.