'Rogue One' Spin-Off Series: Tony Gilroy Out as Director, Replaced By 'Black Mirror' Helmer Toby Haynes

Tony Gilroy will no longer direct the Rogue One: A Star Wars Story spin-off streaming series for Disney+. Instead, Black Mirror and Doctor Who director Toby Haynes is stepping in to take the reins behind the camera on the upcoming show, which features Diego Luna reprising his role as Rebel spy Cassian Andor. Get the details below.

Deadline reports that Gilroy is out as director – but whereas many behind the scenes Star Wars shakeups over the past few years have been contentious, this one at least sounds like a scenario that had less to do with clashing visions and much more to do with the coronavirus. According to Deadline, “Gilroy was forced to drop off as director due to COVID-19 related travel reasons. Gilroy lives in New York and had to make a decision quickly on whether he would head over to the U.K. for the shoot and in the end thought it would be best that he stay in New York and have Haynes take over his directing duties.”

Haynes will now direct the first three episodes of the series, while Gilroy is staying “very much involved” as the showrunner and executive producer. Haynes directed the beloved “U.S.S. Callister” episode of Black Mirror, a Brexit TV movie starring Benedict Cumberbatch, as well as multiple episodes of both Doctor Who and Amazon’s upcoming remake of Utopia. He also directed one of my favorite episodes of the BBC’s Sherlock series: season 2’s “The Reichenbach Fall,” which featured a particularly memorable face-off between Sherlock and Moriarty.

The still-untitled Cassian Andor show has been described as a spy thriller, and we know that it’s set in the early days of the Rebellion, long before Jyn Erso and her ragtag band of misfits led the charge to steal the Death Star plans in 2016’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story movie. (It had to be a prequel because, as you know, Cassian does not survive the events of the film.) Adria Arjona, whose credits include 6 Underground and Pacific Rim: Uprising, has been cast opposite Diego Luna as the female lead. (She might be playing Cassian’s sister, although there’s still no confirmation on that.) They’ll be joined by Denise GoughGenevieve O’ReillyStellan Skarsgard, and Kyle Soller, while Alan Tudyk will return to reprise his role as Cassian’s droid pal K-2SO.

Pre-production on the show is currently underway and filming is set to begin next month.

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