Star Wars: Rogue One ending explained

Photo: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones). Copyright: 2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
Photo: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones). Copyright: 2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved. /

When Star Wars: Rogue One premiered in 2016, the course of Star Wars storytelling changed forever. This was the first live-action feature-length film that was not part of the typical episodic “saga” fans were used to. It took place between two movies, Episode III: Revenge of the Sith and Episode IV: A New Hope. It created new characters while filling in the backstory of how a flaw in the Death Star was found. And it somehow managed to provide a hopeful ending despite depicting massive tragedy.

There’s a lot of action packed into the last segment of the film. Whether you’ve just watched for the first time or you need a quick refresher, here’s a quick explanation of the Rogue One ending.

Jyn is desperate to make sure the Death Star plans are transmitted out from Scariff so the rebellion can review them. In completing her mission and retreating from the tower with Cassian, she finally realizes that despite everything she has been through, she actually did what her father would have wanted her to do: Brought a sense of hope to the galaxy where it seemed none existed any longer.

The Death Star fires a single deadly blast to the Empire’s location on Scariff, wiping out everyone alive still in proximity including Director Krennic, Cassian, and Jyn. But not before the plans for the station are successfully transmitted to the rebel ships waiting above the planet.

With the Empire in close pursuit, the rebels quickly transfer the data to a disk and rush it to Senator Leia Organa just as her ship narrowly escapes the wrath of Darth Vader.

“What have they brought us?” A member of the crew asks the senator.

Leia responds with “Hope,” which refers both to Star Wars: A New Hope and the larger theme of hope across a galaxy far, far away. Securing the Death Star plans means that Leia can ideally get the schematics to the Rebel Alliance and allow them to eventually destroy the superweapon.

Of course, as we know from the original 1977 film, things don’t go exactly the way Leia planned. But things do work out in the end. Hope is restored. The Empire’s reign will not last forever.

The Rogue One ending may be tragic. But it transitions seamlessly into A New Hope which sees the rebellion go up against the Empire once again … and emerge victorious.

light. Related Story. The truth about the ending of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

What do you love about Rogue One?