The first draft for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story had an opening crawl, director Gareth Edwards revealed yesterday during a Reddit AMA.
The director was asked by a fan what an opening crawl would say if he had to add one to the film when he revealed the first draft did indeed include the iconic opening crawl:
“Gary Whitta actually wrote one in the first draft. You’ll have to pester him for it ? … I do believe that those opening crawl words are actually floating out there in space somewhere.”
The statement itself conflicts with a tweet sent out by Lucasfilm story group executive Pablo Hidalgo who said the script never had one but it’s possible Hidalgo may have been referring to the final draft for Rogue One.
It’s understandable that the lack of an opening could help differentiate the Star Wars spin-off from the Skywalker Saga but you could also argue that if there was ever a Star Wars film that needed a crawl, it was Rogue One. The film itself sorely lacked the exposition necessary to fully grasp the dynamic between Director Orson Krennic (Ben Mendelsohn) and the Erso family, especially in the cold open.
Edwards also confirmed that the choice to not include a crawl was made before principal photography even began after he was asked how many of the creative decisions to separate the spin-offs from the episodes was he involved in himself, such as no crawl and not having John Wiliams provide the classic symphonic score:
“We knew from the start that John Williams would not be available for our film… The opening crawl decision was made before we started filming.”
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story will be available on Digital HD March 24 followed by the DVD & Blu-Ray release on April 4.