Rogue One Director Was Nervous About Reviving One Classic Character


Rogue One Director Was Nervous About Reviving One Classic Character
Peter Cushing as Grand Moff Tarkin in Star Wars A New Hope Rogue One Director Was Nervous About Reviving One Classic Character

Edwards credited John Knoll, visual effects supervisor for Rogue One and chief creative officer at ILM, with having the confidence to convincingly execute a CGI Grand Moff Tarkin and selling producer Kathleen Kennedy on the idea. He also explained how British actor Guy Henry, who plays Pius Thicknesse in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, was the right choice to portray fill Cushing’s shoes.

Edwards gave Henry credit for not only his willingness to have an entire performance covered by CGI, but also for keeping his role in Rogue One a secret for so long. As a young actor, Cushing was an inspiration to Henry, and their resemblance certainly made him a fitting stand-in to revive the character. In the end, it appears that Rogue One’s risks with an entirely CGI version of a well-known classic character have overall paid off.

Some fans and critics have suggested out that Rogue One‘s Tarkin falls victim of the “Uncanny Valley” effect. The theory purports that the more human-like robots and animated characters become, the more they evoke feelings of creepiness. As lifelike as Grand Moff Tarkin looks in Rogue One, the knowledge that he is CGI could cause similarly unsettling feelings. But the alternative would have been to simply place Henry in the unobscured role of Grand Moff Tarkin, which would have carried its own unique set of risks. However you felt watching the revived Tarkin in Rogue One, there’s no doubt that ILM did a spectacularly convincing job bringing him back to life.

 

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