Upon the first announcement of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, before any real details about the film's plot were available, a number of possibilities began swimming through the heads of fans.
Did Rogue One refer to the legendary Rogue Squadron, of which Luke Skywalker and Wedge Antilles were members? Would this film be about the birth of the Rebellion's most elite unit, something the old expanded universe dedicated multiple books and video games to? Or did the name imply something else, something entirely new?
As more information about the film has become available, it became clear that Disney's first Star Wars spin-off film actually had little to do with Rogue Squadron as fans originally assumed. Now, at long last, director Gareth Edwards is sharing some insight on what exactly the name Rogue One means.
In an interview with Empire magazine, Edwards says the film's title actually has multiple meanings.
"Rogue One is a military call sign to some extent," Edwards said. "[...] but this is the first film that's gone off-piste and is not part of the saga — or the Anakin story — so it's the 'rogue' one, you know?"
Edwards goes on to say that the title is also a reference to Rogue One protagonist Jyn Erso, the one responsible for assembling a team of renegades in order to steal the plans to the Death Star.
"It's kind of describing her as well in a similar way," says Edwards. "It has [all] these split, multiple meanings that made it feel like the right choice."
It's possible the film could still, in some way, show the birth of Rogue Squadron and the invention of the military call sign that became a staple of the Rebellion. A new trailer for the film (which debuted during NBC's primetime coverage of the Rio Olympics) did show a brief segment involving X-Wings firing upon an Empire installation, in addition to providing a brief glimpse at Darth Vader himself. It's hard to say whether or not the brief X-Wing segment of the trailer means anything in the greater context of the film.
For now, fans will simply have to continue speculating about the film's closely-guarded plot details, but thankfully, the wait for the finished product won't be too much longer. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story arrives in theaters Dec. 16.