D23 brought plenty of Star Wars news. In addition to announcing that Colin Trevorrow will direct Star Wars: Episode IX (talk about planning ahead! The film will not be released until 2019!), LucasFilm revealed some details about the first stand-alone Star Wars film, Rogue One which has begun principle photography.
Gareth Edwards (Godzilla, Monsters) is directing and Kathleen Kennedy is producing. Allison Shearmur (The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Cinderella), John Knoll, Simon Emanuel (The Dark Knight Rises, Fast & Furious 6) and Jason McGatlin (Tintin, War of the Worlds) are executive producers. Kiri Hart and John Swartz (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) are co-producers. Greig Fraser (Zero Dark Thirty, Foxcatcher) is the director of photography and Neil Corbould (Black Hawk Down, Gladiator, Saving Private Ryan) is special effects supervisor.
No character names yet, but the cast includes Felicity Jones ( The Theory of Everything, Diego Luna (Milk Killing Them Softly, Ben Mendelsohn (Bloodline), Donnie Yen (Ip Man Blade II Also on the cast are Jiang Wen (Let the Bullets Fly Devils on the DoorstepThe Butler The Last King of Scotland), Mads Mikkelsen (The Hunt Casino Royale, and Riz Ahmed (Nightcrawler Four Lions). Alan Tudyk plays a performance-capture character who, we all hope, is more Gollum than Jar-Jar in his final appearance. .
Rogue One is set before Star Wars: A New Hope and tells the story of resistance fighters who have united to steal plans to the Death Star. According to Kathleen Kennedy, “It goes into new territory, exploring the galactic struggle from a ground-war perspective while maintaining that essential Star Wars feel that fans have come to know.”
Rogue One is slated for December 16, 2016 .