Movies|Movie Trailers: ‘Rogue One,’ ‘Fantastic Beasts’ and the Franchise Challenge – New York Times
“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” set for release Dec. 16, occupies a challenging place in the “Star Wars” universe. Though it’s billed as a stand-alone story, the movie takes place between earlier trilogies of the “Star Wars” saga, managing to be both prequel and sequel in a franchise that already has plenty of them. And past extensions of “Star Wars” haven’t always been well received, even by die-hard fans.
“Rogue One” isn’t alone in this challenge, especially as a franchise-crazy Hollywood latches onto the concept of cinematic universes. Now many new movies have to establish where they fit in larger narrative schemes. Most recently, “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” now in theaters, looked to expand the film world of “Harry Potter” beyond the original J. K. Rowling novels.
Movies with their own tales that are also firmly grounded in worlds we’ve seen before put an extra burden on their marketers. On a basic level, the trailers must show these movies as exciting new stories on their own merits. But they also need to pull in the larger contexts — to excite in-the-know fans — without alienating anyone.
So how can a trailer thrill audiences that are loyal, entice moviegoers who aren’t and avoid making potential detractors furious? Here’s a look at the final domestic trailers for each of these films.
ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY This trailer starts, just like so many science-fiction movies do, with music and a spaceship.
An ominous, almost haunting melody pierces quiet strings as a vessel cuts across the sky. Something about it looks vaguely familiar, but there isn’t much time to place it. Still, in just five seconds, a comforting sense of déjà vu is easily established.