Is there trouble with the post-production of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story? That’s what the Hollywood Reporter believes as it is stating that Tony Gilroy has been “empowered to take the lead on postproduction for the Dec. 16 release, even as director Gareth Edwards remains involved in the project.”
This story comes on the heels of the previous rumor that the additional photography done for the film back in June was to help lighten the tone of the piece, to make it more inline with the main Star Wars franchise.
According to the Reporter’s multiple sources, Gilroy would be “supervising” the edit of the film while still working with input from Edwards. The move is being spun positively, being described as “collaborative” between the two. And there is no reason to doubt that as Gilroy also worked with Edwards on 2014’s Godzilla, the film that impressed Lucasfilm’s Kathleen Kennedy enough to give him the Rogue One job. Gilroy has been pretty involved with the production of the film already, with the writer of several of the Bourne movies doing an uncredited rewrite on the screenplay and being one of the creative overseers of the film’s four-week reshoots phase.
Disney had no comment for the Hollywood Reporter.
Stories about behind-the-scenes turmoil in the production of a big franchise film are becoming more commonplace every day. Earlier this week, the Hollywood Reporter had a piece about Warner Brothers test screening differing cuts of Suicide Squad, presumably in a panic to avoid the unanticipated negative reviews that greeted Batman V Superman. And honestly, this is to be expected. This isn’t the place for auteur filmmaking. While it is always good for a film to have a strong, guiding creative vision, that is not the reality with big budget, franchise films these days.
As more studios put more of their financial eggs into the franchise basket, there will be tighter control over production. These films are now starting to cost at a bare minimum of $100 million dollars, more often than not pricing in at closer to $200 million and beyond. These are substantial investments and the returns can be great for the studio. But a couple of failures can cause some serious damage to a studio’s bottom line, so everyone wants to have their fingers in the pie.
But while everyone is trying to make a film as best as it can be, often times those ideas can be in direct opposition to each other. And so a compromise is made which results in a compromised product. Will Rogue One feel that way? We’ll find out on December 16 when it hits theaters.