Exciting new details have emerged about the principal cast of the forthcoming Star Wars spin-off 'Rogue One'.
Names and backstories of the characters have been unveiled, as well as information on the crucial role that Darth Vader will have in the films. Director Gareth Edwards has said:
"Within the Empire, there is the culture of knowing of the existence of Darth Vader, there's definitely an underlying feeling that there is a power – a dark power – available to the Empire and that if you overstep your mark, you will suffer the consequences."
The characters and their backstories have been confirmed by Entertainment Weekly as follows:
Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones)
A streetwise delinquent who has been on her own since the age of 15, she has fighting skills and a knowledge of the galactic underworld that the Rebel Alliance desperately needs. She has been referred to as the "kind of Joan of Arc in the story."
Captain Cassian Andor (Diego Luna)
Andor is a by-the-book Rebel intelligence officer, brought in to steady the volatile Erso.
Chirrut Imwe (Donnie Yen)
Although not a Jedi, he's devoted to their ways and has used his spirituality to overcome his blindness and become a formidable warrior.
Baze Malbus (Jiang Wen)
Heavily armored, Baze prefers a blaster to hokey religions and ancient weapons, and is devoted to protecting his friend Chirrut at all costs.
Bodhi Rook (Riz Amed)
Bodhi is the Rebel squad's lead pilot. He tends to be hot-headed, but any abrasiveness is overshadowed by his skills in the air — and the void of space.
K-2SO (Alan Tudyk)
This towering, powerful security droid is described by director Gareth Edwards as, "the antithesis of C-3PO."
Galen Erso (Mads Mikkelsen)
Jyn's estranged father is like the galactic version of nuclear pioneer J. Robert Oppenheimer, with doomsday knowledge that is sought by both the Empire and the Rebellion.
Director Orson Krennic (Ben Mendelsohn)
On the opposing side, this villain is an ambitious Imperial apparatchik who intends to use his squad of Deathtroopers to pulverize the Rebel uprising and ascend into the Emperor's graces – while hopefully avoiding the wrath of his enforcer, Darth Vader.
Saw Gerrera (Forest Whitaker)
This character has a past that Star Wars completists will recognize immediately when they see his name, even if he looks very different than the way they've seen him before.
The standalone film, which is due for release on 16th December, will reveal how the Rebellion got hold of the information that exposed the flaw in the Empire's Death Star.