Easily amongst the best movie villains of all time, if not *the* best, Darth Vader made a mark on cinema that goes far beyond his role as the heavy in the original Star Wars trilogy. Of course for fans, the badassness of Vader lost some points with the pathetic “No!” in Revenge of the Sith, but even George Lucas‘ own Brittaing of his franchise couldn’t ruin the awesome vide we all got of seeing Vader stand with the Emperor in front of the under-construction Death Star at the end of Sith, or his arrival as the big bad in the new season of the animated Star Wars: Rebels. But don’t call it a comeback, even if it looks like one, because sources now say that Vader will be putting an appearance in the first Star Wars Anthology flick, Rogue One.
According to a tip to Birth.death.movies, Vader will be appearing in Rogue One in some capacity. Whether or not it’s a mere cameo, or if he turns out to be one of the villains of the piece, the tipster makes it clear that Darth Vader is *not* the main villain. More specifically, Vader will “be working behind the scenes, pulling strings and will appear onscreen” and as a result he’ll appear “via viewscreen or holo projection or something.”
That would make sense since it was previous reported that Rogue One will be more of a war movie, relying on the gritty realism of a future war, and less on the magic and mysticism of the Force and the Jedi. Having Darth Vader there would probably ruin the aesthetic the filmmakers are going for, but on the other hand, Vader is one of the high-up guys in the Empire, which would make him directly involved in the construction of the Death Star. So if a movie about Rebels stealing the Darth Star plans didn’t involve Vader in some way, that would have been an oversight too.
Another lingering question is who will play Vader? Of course, the physical persona will likely be someone different, but it is conceivable that they would bring David Prowse back. What we actually mean is who will do the voice? Will it be James Earl Jones again? Likely, he did come back for Sith and Rebels so clearly he will likely be willing to make a Vader comeback for Rogue One. Time will tell how any of this pans out.
We may learn more about Rogue One during the Star Wars panel later this week at Comic Con. Rumors indicate that principal photography may have started on the film directed by Gareth Edwards (Godzilla), which makes it rather unlikely that any new footage will be revealed, but for Comic Con fans there may be a chance to see that teaser again, the one that was shown at Celebration a couple of months ago. Heck, maybe Disney and Lucasfilm might finally, officially throw it up online.
Star Wars Anthology: Rogue One will be in theaters everywhere December 2016.