New “Star Wars: Rogue One” Trailer Promises Epic Rebel Action

A new trailer for the upcoming film Star Wars: Rogue One debuted during the Olympics last night, and it looks like it will be amazing. The movie, while certainly a legitimate Star Wars film, is not part of the main 9-part Anikin Skywalker storyline of movies past, is being subtitled “A Star Wars Story,” and follows the story of rebel fighters in the time before Luke Skywalker blew up the Death Star in A New Hope.

Rogue One stars British Actress Felicity Jones as the saucy rebel fighter Jyn Erso. Jones received a Best Actress nom for her role in 2014’s The Theory of Everything, alongside Eddie Redmayne. The movie also stars Forest Whitaker and Diego Luna. I guess the Rebel Alliance requires their top fighters to be gorgeous as well as adept at operating laser guns.

The film is directed by Gareth Edwards, who previously helmed Godzilla (2014), and scheduled for release on December 16th in theaters everywhere.

Check out the trailer below.

Watch Drake Doremus Discuss His New Drama ‘Breathe In’

Drake Doremus made his directorial debut in 2006 with Moonpie but it was last year that he emotionally ravaged our hearts with the strained relationship drama, Like Crazy. Premiering at Sundance last year, the film starring Anton Yelchin and Felicity Jones won Doremus the Grand Jury Prize for Best Dramatic Film, in addition to making us fall in love with the exquistely beautiful sounds of composer, Dustin O’Halloran—whose score gave the film an added layer of potency and heartbreak. I, myself, have spent many an hour weeping over my own romantic yearnings to his melancholic opuses.

And with his latest film, Breathe In, Doremus takes the themes and emotions he wove together in Like Crazy, and seems to have a deep affinty for, even further. Starring Jones once again with a cast of Guy Pearce, Amy Ryan, and Mackenzie Davis, the film centers on a foreign exchange student who arrives in a small town in upstate New York and "unexpectedly challenges the dynamics of her host family’s relationships. As illicit romance blooms, she alters their lives forever." Variety reported that Breathe In, "focuses more on states of mind, using Dustin O’Halloran’s rich piano score to amplify the collective agitation, while capturing from each character’s perspective how one can occasionally feel like an outsider even while clearly part of something." According to IndieWire, who spoke with Doremus at Sundance this week after the premiere, "one of the big impetus’ in making the picture for the filmmaker was working with Jones again, but also composer Dustin O’Halloran who is a major emotional component." From the reviews thus far, Breathe In looks to show a tremendous amount of growth and maturity from the young director and AFI alum whose film has struck an chord with critics and makes me already excited for whatever emotional distress this will leave me in.

Check out the full IndieWire interview with Doremus and have a put your head down on your desk and enjoy the sounds of O’Halloran’s Like Crazy score.

Director Drake Doremus on ‘Like Crazy’ and His Bigger, Darker New Film

Last January, Drake Doremus entered his small, personal film into competition at the Sundance Film Festival, with hopes that the right people would see it, love it, and hopefully buy it. To say that things went according to plan is an understatement. Not only did Like Crazy—a naturalistic drama about a young couple caught in the throes of a long distance relationship—win the Special Grand Jury Prize, but it was bought by Paramount, the most major of major studios. Now in its second week of release, Like Crazy will be in theaters nationwide by Thanksgiving, and has claimed its mantle as one of the most talked about films of the fall.

The movie, which stars Felicity Jones and Anton Yelchin as the star-crossed pair, gave Doremus the clout to go big—or relatively big—on his next picture, which he filmed last summer in New York, and stars Jones, Guy Pearce, Amy Ryan, and newcomer Mackenzie Davis. Doremus recently visited our offices to offer his interpretation of the sometimes ambiguous Like Crazy, and to share exclusive details about his next project. 

How many times have you seen Like Crazy? 
I don’t watch it anymore. I stopped watching it in Toronto, that’s the last time I saw it. It’s really difficult because I don’t really see the movie the same way anymore.

How do you see it now?
I’m just older, so when I watch the movie, I see like a younger version of myself making that film as opposed to the filmmaker I am today, which would have made a very different movie. But where I was at that time in my life and what I had to say about love and life and relationships, that’s certainly in the film.

Your new film is shot, but doesn’t have a title. Do you have anything in mind?
To be honest, nothing yet. It’s crazy. Hopefully something will present itself soon. It’s frustrating, because everyone always asks what it’s called, and we just don’t have a title.

Have you started to feel a Like Crazy awards push from the powers that be?
I do feel that. It’s funny, because it’s certainly not something I’m focusing on or thinking about. I’m focusing on sharing the message of the film with as many people as possible.

This whole process has been your first exposure to the Hollywood Industrial Complex. What’s that been like? 
It’s very strange, the business side of things. Making the film was such a creative endeavor, and there were never any creative compromises, but the amount of money being spent on the marketing campaign is like forty times the size of the budget we made the movie for. That’s hilarious to me, but I will say this: everyone at Paramount is genuinely in this for the right reasons. They didn’t buy the movie and they’re not backing the movie and they’re not pushing the movie because of money or because they have to. Their hearts are 100% in it.

Have people been coming up to you and telling you how authentic this film feels to them?
Well people come up to me and say, “That’s my story,” and that’s awesome.

Is Jacob and Anna’s relationship true love, or is it an addiction that neither can quite shake?
For them, the relationship becomes like trying to come back to a moment that existed, that’s in the past, and that doesn’t exist anymore. It’s that first three or four months that you cling to, or want to relive over and over again, like a drug. That’s the saddest thing of all, because while you’re in it, you can’t tell yourself that it’s not real, or that it doesn’t exist anymore. I feel like it’s two things, to be concise: One, it’s Jacob and Anna trying to get back to that moment, and two, it’s Jacob and Anna trying to move on from each other and not being able to. It’s somewhere in between those two, and it’s the grey area that’s devastating. That’s something that I really wanted to convey.

Like Crazy has an ambiguous ending, but is it ambiguous for you?
No, it’s so funny I feel like it’s ambiguous in some ways, and it’s not in other ways. For me, I really wanted the audience to feel exhausted. The relationship has taken such a toll on them emotionally that they have so little left to give. Whether they have nothing left to give and it’s over at that moment, or they will stagger into a sort of half-state of a relationship over the next couple months or a year is really up to the audience.

Were you trying to give the audience the power to create their own story after the film finished?
Yeah, I think it’s such a personal story for the audience and for me, that to jam something so conclusive in there would be untrue or manipulative, because I think this movie is what you bring to it from your life. I’ve read some reviews where people just don’t get the film, and it’s just so clear that they’ve never been through anything like this at all. If you have, then you have your own ending, and it wouldn’t be right of me to try and force mine on the audience.

We’ve covered the story of how you find Felicity Jones, but tell me how you cam across Anton Yelchin?
I think as far as kids in their early ‘20s in Hollywood, he’s one of the best actors. He’s a chameleon and a great character actor, and I didn’t want to go for just some good looking model kid, I wanted to go for an actor, someone who just has really good chops. He was on my list right from the start, and then I met with him and we spent three hours together talking about the character and talking about how I make movies and how he likes to work, and we were just on the same page pretty much right from the start.

What can you tell me about the film you just shot? Did the bigger budget change anything?
Well, the food is a little bit better. What it changes is just the atmosphere. The scope of the new movie is so much bigger.

How so?
There were scenes with 500 extras in the background. It’s just a bigger scope to the story. The backdrop of the story is in a much bigger world, it’s not so intensely in two people’s heads as they go through a relationship. This is about a guy who’s married and takes in a foreign exchange student, and he has a daughter and this very strange sort of emotional connection happens over the course of the semester. while this student, Felicity Jones, stays in this house. Hopefully it’ll be a beautiful throwback to some more classic love stories, like A Place in the Sun.

Where did the story come from?
It started from my obsession over the last year with classical music and the piano. It started with my composer Dustin O’Halloran, who did the score for Marie Antoinette and then Like Crazy, and just non-stop listening to his piano work. I wanted to write a story set against the backdrop of the fabric of that music.

So the piano is a big part of the story?
Yeah, Felicity’s character is a pianist. She’s great in this movie, and it’s a much different character than Anna, much darker and complex. The way we’ve been describing the film is like a darker cousin to Like Crazy; It still retains a lot of the same core integral values of how we make films, just on a bigger, darker, more romantic thriller-y stage. It’s a little bit more of a more romantic thriller. You never know, someone might kill somebody.

Do you ever worry that you don’t have another film in you?
Of course. Right now, I’m not even thinking about what’s next, because I have both of these films. But if I’m not hungry or passionate or don’t have an idea, then I shouldn’t be making a movie. So yeah, I get nervous about it, but I also feel like I’m in a really creative time in my life where I’m not too nervous about it at the moment.

Hearts on Fire: Felicity Jones Breaks Out in the Wrenching Romance ‘Like Crazy’

Felicity Jones is in need of a pep talk. Tomorrow, the petite brunette—who in person looks like a graduate-student version of Audrey Hepburn—will head to Los Angeles to begin the final leg of the promotional tour for her new film, Like Crazy. Reporters, bloggers, and curious fans will grill the 27-year-old about her role in the vérité romance, and she will oblige them. “I’m getting to talk about something I really believe in,” she says. “If it were anything less than that, it would be much harder.” When the questions inevitably turn personal, Jones will instinctively tighten up. Like Crazy emerged from obscurity to win the Grand Jury Prize at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, igniting a bidding war won by Paramount. Jones was awarded the special Jury Prize for her own work in the bruising love story about the stop-start masochism of a long distance relationship, and she is keenly aware that journalists—this one included—will look to identify links between the actor and her character, Anna.

“What are some tips to give a good interview?” she asks in a British accent that recalls stately country manses. “Because it’s a fine art.” Don’t give stock answers, I tell her, and be as honest as possible. “Right, right, I know, I know, I know” she shoots back as though the answer had been lodged in the back of her brain all along. I suggest she tell more anecdotes, like she would were she sitting on David Letterman’s couch, and she mentions that she admires the one-on-one skills of Ryan Gosling, and his “weird” and “offbeat” remarks. Promoting films aside, Jones finds interviews to be nerve-wracking. “The whole reason you become an actor is, in some way, that you’re interested in escaping yourself,” she says. “The irony is, you have to then spend so much time talking about yourself.” She admits to having felt uneasy on the way to this interview at the Knave Café, a palatial corridor at the Parker Meridien hotel in Manhattan. “And then I realized, don’t try and be anything. Just be you.”

Jones came of age in suburbia, in Bournville, England, the only village in the world with a chocolate bar named in its honor. (It was founded in the 19th century by the Cadbury family to house the company factory workers.) Her parents—her father is a journalist and mother is in advertising—split up when she was three, and by age 11, she was attending an after-school drama club, with dreams of “making a movie about a love affair between two people,” she says, with a hint of sarcasm. After appearing on British television as a regular on shows like The Worst Witch and Cape Wrath, she took three years off to earn a degree in English Literature at Oxford, where she met “weird and wonderful people” who she still counts among her closest friends.

After university, Jones transitioned to features, with a role in Cemetery Junction, a grim take on stalled youth by Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant. From there, she appeared as Miranda in Julie Taymor’s risky Shakespeare adaptation, The Tempest, and, most recently, as a lovelorn snowboarder in the treacly Chalet Girl, a British Cinderella story set in the Austrian Alps and costarring Gossip Girl’s Ed Westwick. That mountain romance relied heavily on the very genre clichés that Like Crazy so forcefully rejects, and Jones is well aware of that. “As soon as I finished a snowboarding romantic comedy, I knew I was ready for something different.”

Like Crazy was conceived by indie auteur Drake Doremus (who first made waves at Sundance with 2010’s Douchebag), and tracks the story of Jacob (played by Anton Yelchin) and Anna, two intelligent, vulnerable college students in Los Angeles who fall hopelessly in love during a night of heavy-hearted glances and Paul Simon’s Graceland. After graduation, Anna, a British national who’s overstayed her visa, is denied reentry into the United States following what was supposed to be a brief visit home. From there, the film charts the euphoria of their reunions—and the despair of their separation—in a tone that’s natural and true. Gone are the traditional obstacles of Hollywood romances; misunderstandings come not from contrived plot devices, but from unarticulated feelings. “We’re not being didactic or trying to manipulate the audience in any way,” says Jones. “It’s just about these two people trying to be good in a difficult situation.”  

The film’s honesty is a testament to Doremus’ idiosyncratic directing style. His scripts function as detailed, scene-by-scene outlines. Instead of dialogue, there are stage directions. Actors improvise their way through a scene, reaching its conclusion organically. The result is the kind of movie where silence expresses more than words. “Drake is as obsessed with subtext as I am,” says Jones. “His note is always to play against the feeling—never show exactly what you want. So if you’re falling in love with someone, show that you’re trying not to fall in love with them, because that’s more interesting.”

The director’s commitment to realism is so unwavering that for a scene where Anna reads Jacob her poetry, Doremus asked his lead to write the verses herself. With some post-collegiate jitters, Jones spent a late night composing a poem that encapsulates the film’s romantic spirit. Several lines wound up being used as a voiceover in the trailers. (Sample: “I thought I understood it, but I didn’t… Not really. I knew the smudgeness of it. The eagerness of it. The idea of it. Of a you and me.”)

During a pivotal shower scene in the film’s final moments, the camera lingers on Jones’ porcelain face, her dark eyes locked in a stormy gaze. What she’s staring at is not onscreen, but instead, one supposes, off in some faraway past or uncertain future. Ambiguity is the point. A homemade version of the scene, which Jones shot in her apartment after speaking to Doremus over the phone, convinced him to cast her without ever meeting her face-to-face, a huge gamble for a director whose film’s fate rested on the chemistry between his two leads. “It was a gut feeling, really,” explains Doremus. “How she shot herself in her flat, the nuance, not having the urge to perform but to just be. She has an incredible ability to feel a moment and own it without overwhelming it.”

Doremus and Jones worked so well together that he cast her in his next project, a Westchester, New York-set story about a married teacher (Guy Pearce) who falls in love with a student, played by Jones. If Like Crazy examines the addictiveness of romantic love, then Doremus’ follow-up, which wrapped last summer and is still untitled, looks at the fallout from loving two people at the same time. Does Jones, who counts fellow Brits Carey Mulligan and Keira Knightley as close friends, get to test her American accent onscreen for the first time? “No, I’m English,” she says, half-giggling. “I think Drake is fascinated by people in alien environments. The character is called Sophie and she’s a lot more internalized than Anna. It’s a much darker, more complicated story. But for my next project I’m hoping to play an American.”

Midway through the interview, Jones, who’s holding a topped-off latte precariously over her lap, trembles slightly. It’s enough to send a tsunami cascading onto her pants. “Oh my God, I’ve spilt coffee all over myself!” she cries. “This is so embarrassing!” But you get the sense that it really isn’t—Jones, for one, is smiling. When she returns with paper towels, we both point out how lucky she is to be wearing black pants; once patted down, the coffee vanishes into the fabric. “I’m a really polished, sophisticated actress, okay?”

I warn Jones before I bring up her long-term relationship with the sculptor and conceptual artist Ed Fornieles, with whom she shares an apartment in London. It’s part of my job, I explain by way of apology, and she nods in silent, if grim, determination. Has he seen Like Crazy, and what does he think of the film’s raw intimacy? “He has seen it, and he’s been very supportive of it,” she says. “He said that the film was great, and he’s an artist, so he understands it entirely. I mean, the things he does are far more insane than the things I do.” (Fornieles once appeared on the cover of Vogue Hommes with a tarantula swallowing his face.)

I ask her if she looks forward to working from a traditional script again. (Because of a commitment to a London production of Luise Miller, she turned down the chance to star as the title character in Tarsem Singh’s Snow White, a role that went to Lily Collins). “Yes,” she says, before offering: “But I think people express more through their faces than through their words. As soon as you put something into words, you suddenly become self-conscious and a level of falseness creeps in. I’m always trying to reduce the dialogue as much as possible, because that’s what’s fascinating about human beings—we never say what we think.”

Photography by Emily Shur. Styling by Jenny Ricker.