By Graeme McMillan, The Hollywood Reporter
With Rogue One: A Star Wars Story a month away from release, it’s unsurprising that new trailers are revealing more and more information about Gareth Edwards’ heist movie. But does the latest international trailer reveal something far more important than it first appears?
The new trailer offers a substantial amount of new footage audiences haven’t seen before, but the chance to see more Darth Vader might be a distraction from the truly important moment — the exchange between the young Jyn Erso and the woman assumed to be her mother at 0:26.
It’s not what her mother says in that brief moment that’s so telling, although hearing her say “Trust the Force” does raise the possibility that Jyn can use the Force, which would make for an unexpected — but, no doubt, thrilling — climax to the movie. Instead, focus on the pendant Jyn is given by her mother; something so important that we see it in the next scene, as the adult Jyn (Felicity Jones) ponders her fate. What if that’s not just any crystal, but instead a kyber crystal?
There are reasons to believe that this is the case; Jedha, the planet at the center of Rogue One, has already been revealed to be the planet where such crystals are mined, meaning that the movie is already concerned with the crystals in some form, which is understandable — after all, it’s kyber crystals that power lightsabers, according to the mythology of the franchise.
However, there’s another part of Star Wars mythology that suggests that Jyn might be wearing a kyber crystal, as well as explaining why the Empire is on Jedha in the first place. Canonically, the Death Star is powered by kyber crystals, as well — which might make it particularly significant that the daughter of the man responsible for the creation of the superweapon is wearing a crystal around her neck.
To follow this line of speculation through to a natural conclusion, what is the likelihood that Jyn’s mission to rescue her father from the Empire instead results in her father once again finding the crystal necessary to make the Death Star operational — a crystal hidden away from him for years by his wife, who would rather trust in the natural order of things (“Trust the Force”) than accept a despotic regime that is willing to construct a weapon that can literally destroy the planet of anyone that stands against it?
It’s a given that Rogue One ends in a stalemate in the conflict between the Rebellion and the Empire — the very first Star Wars film begins with the former with stolen Death Star plans, while the latter has a fully operational Death Star. Could that stalemate be the result of a heist that, while successful, accidentally delivers the one thing the Empire needed into its hands?