Pardon me, but I’m going to have to tell you what you probably already guessed. Lucasfilm’s Star Wars prequel Rogue One will not have a sequel. Because it already has one. It’s called Star Wars. Because Rogue One is a Star Wars prequel. Sorry, I got stuck in a logic loop for a second there.
But to be fair, it’s reasonable to assume that Disney and Lucasfilm would want to continue in the Rogue One business considering they’re taking the time to introduce a whole new host of heroes, planets, and creatures in their inaugural standalone film. Especially in the current entertainment environment, which values brand IP and mega-blockbusters above all, and especially for a film that is already setting pre-sales records and charting for a massive opening weekend.
But Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy made it perfectly clear in Empire Magazine (via /Film), that the studio will not pursue a Rogue One sequel, which she jokingly refers to as “Rogue Two”, even if the film is a huge box office success, which it will be. Visual effects artist John Knoll emphasizes that Rogue One is and was always intended to be a self-contained film, and director Gareth Edwards jokes that if there was a Rogue One sequel, “that sequel will be directed by George Lucas,” because that sequel would be A New Hope.
However, even if they’re firmly stating that there won’t be a specific Rogue One sequel, I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the characters popped up in the other Star Wars stories, like say, that Han Solo movie they’re gearing up for. It remains to be seen if Disney will fully crib from their Marvel shared universe model, but in a way they’ve already set the template. We know that Forest Whitaker is playing Saw Gerrera — a character that debuted in The Clone Wars. Of course, it’s possible that Lucasfilm genuinely isn’t trying to build new franchises out of their franchise, but the skeptic me finds that hard to fully believe.
Rogue One opens in theaters nationwide on December 16th and stars Felicity Jones, Mads Mikkelsen, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Donnie Yen, Jiang Wen, Alan Tudyk, and Riz Ahmed.