Having worked with Industrial Light and Magic on the Star Wars prequels, one might imagine that there is very little left to do in the Star Wars saga that visual effects supervisor John Knoll has not already done. However, now serving as both visual effects supervisor and executive producer on Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Knoll revealed to Comicbook.com that there is one particular sequence in the upcoming standalone film that he was very excited to work on.
Knoll explained that the sequence involving a planet falling apart from the inside featured in various promotional material for the film was just a glimpse of what the special effects team has in store for Rogue One.
“Oh, there’s more […] There’s a big space battle; that was a lot of fun to do, too.”
Knoll also discussed the approach the design team had when it came to designing new vehicles and space crafts while remaining true to the aesthetic of the original Star Wars films.
“We all felt the same [emotional response] here. I love the original designs of the ships, you know. Especially as we are trying to make new things like the new TIE fighter and the U-wigs and things that kind of fit into that aesthetic – we want it to look like, ‘Yes, this came from the same factory that the X-wings came from’. The reason I guess that car manufacturers across their whole product line, you see similar things. You know, ‘Okay that’s an Audi’ because it’s got Audi things about it. We figured that stuff that came from Incom [a starfighter designer in the Star Wars universe], all has those same Incom things.
Knoll revealed which sequence he was especially excited to work on and why the scene was special to him.
“Honestly, the space battle was the one [thing from the Original Trilogy] I was very excited about [putting my stamp on], because I just…it’s something I really loved about the original film. To be able to get some time putting in shots of X-wings, TIE fighters, and Star Destroyers was just…they’re such great designs, and to be able to do new shots with some of the better tools we’ve got now, but with those classic designs, it’s kind of irresistible.”
Knoll assured fans who may be concerned that the flood of promotional material for Rogue One has spoiled the films most exciting moments that they have only been given a glimpse of what the film has to offer.
“It is just a tease, because there’s a lot that’s been held back. You have not seen all the cool stuff, there’s a lot that isn’t there.”
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story will be released in theaters on December 16, 2016.