After being confirmed to not contain the traditional opening crawl, Rogue One will differentiate itself further from other Star Wars films by barely containing much of John Williams original music. Rogue One will be the first Star Wars film to not be scored by Williams or contain much of his work.
Michael Giacchino is the composer for the upcoming film, an oscar winner with a history with Disney including Up, and most recently Doctor Strange. The film was originally going to be composed by William’s protege Alexandre Desplat, but his schedule conflicted with the film’s extensive reshoots. Giacchino was then brought in three months before the film was to be released, with only four weeks to score the film.
When speaking to EW, Giacchino said the following:
“[Kathleen Kennedy] said to me, ‘No one is asking you to do what was done before. I feel it’s important to be me, but in this universe we’re working within. That was sort of the challenge. it was never sort of, ‘Oh you have to do this, this, and this.’ It was always just: ‘Here are the emotions that we need to cover.'”
“[There were only] a couple of times when you want to hit upon something that was from the past. For me, even as a fan, it was about going, ‘Oh, this particular idea would be a great if we did it here. I would want to see that if I were watching a Star Wars movie.’ As a kid who grew up with John’s music and who was catapulted in this direction because of what he did, I had a very specific idea of what I wanted to use and how I wanted to use it.”
“That being said, I’d say the score is 95 percent original, but with little moments here or there to accent. If I were sitting in that seat and I heard that, it would totally raise the hairs on my neck.”
With the original score, Giacchino says we can look forward to some World War II feeling themes and work inspired from the Flash Gordon serials. He even got to slightly change the opening title theme, and possibly his own take on the Imperial March.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story hits theaters December 16th.