'Star Wars: Rogue One' Enlists Renowned Stunt Coordinator for Reshoots (Exclusive)

Simon Crane joins screenwriter Tony Gilroy in helping work on the first stand-alone 'Star Wars' movie.
Courtesy of Disney
'Rogue One: A Star Wars Story'; Simon Crane (inset)

Veteran stunt coordinator and second unit director Simon Crane has been tapped to assist with the lengthy reshoots for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, sources tell The Hollywood Reporter.

Rogue One, being directed by Gareth Edwards, will undergo significant additional filming this summer, it was revealed earlier this week. Disney and Lucasfilm are hoping to accomplish several goals with the reshoots, including working on the tone of what has been described by sources as a “war movie.” The lightening of the feel of the film is meant to broaden its appeal.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens grossed more than $2 billion worldwide, and while Disney isn’t expecting similar returns for Rogue One, the bar has been set high for subsequent franchise installments. In other words, a paltry $400 million isn’t going to cut it for a Star Wars movie, so Disney wants as broadly appealing a film as possible.

The involvement of Crane, who has crafted the action sequences of such movies as World War Z starring Brad Pitt and the Tom Cruise sci-fi action movie Edge of Tomorrow, also indicates that Rogue One’s action is being worked on as well.

In addition, THR has confirmed that Tony Gilroy, a screenwriter whose credits range from asteroid blockbuster Armageddon to three Jason Bourne movies and the Oscar-nominated Michael Clayton, is working on the new pages for the script. Gilroy, like Crane, has a relationship with producer Frank Marshall, husband of Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy. 

Sources say Gilroy, who also directed a trio of movies including Bourne Legacy, also will be involved in helming the reshoots, which will take place at Pinewood Studios outside London. The length of the reshoots has not been revealed; some sources have pegged the shoot to take up to six weeks.

Crane began his career in stunt work on such pics as Aliens, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Batman, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Total Recall and Saving Private Ryan. More recently, he worked on Mr. & Mrs. Smith, World War Z and Edge of Tomorrow. He eventually began doing what most masterful stunt coordinators do, taking over action sequences himself as a second unit director. He did so on 2001’s Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, while more recent work included World War Z, Maleficent and this summer’s Jason Bourne.

Rogue One, starring Felicity Jones and Ben Mendelsohn, focuses on the fabled mission hinted at in Star Wars: Episode IV — A  New Hope, that of a group of rebels stealing the plans to the Death Star. The plans later end up in the hands of Princess Leia, who transfers them to R2-D2.

Rogue One’s release date remains Dec. 16.

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