EXCLUSIVE: As Disney+ prepares to start production on its new Rogue One spinoff series, it will be doing so with a new director as sources tell Deadline Toby Haynes will helm the first three episodes, replacing Tony Gilroy.
Sources say Gilroy dropped off as director for 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 UK for the shoot; in the end, he thought it would be best that he stay in New York and have Haynes take over his directing duties.
Haynes already was high on the list of directors who would helm future episodes and since he also already was in the UK, all parties thought this would make the most sense. Gilroy will stay very much involved with the series as exec producer and showrunner.
Disney+'s 'Star Wars' Spinoff Series 'Rogue One' Sets Adria Arjona To Co-Star With Diego Luna
The series centers on the Cassian Andor character (Diego Luna, reprising his role from the film) and is in pre-production with plans to start shooting next month. Adria Arjona, Denise Gough, Genevieve O’Reilly, Stellan Skarsgard and Kyle Soller also are in the cast.
A Disney spokesperson declined to comment.
The untitled show focuses on Rebel agent Andor prior to the events of Rogue One in the early days of the bebellion against the Empire. The show had been described as a “spy thriller” when plans for it first were revealed last year. It also was previously announced that Luna would return as Andor, while Alan Tudyk is set to reprise his role as K-2SO, Andor’s droid sidekick.
Following the huge success of The Mandalorian, Disney+ has ramped its development on other Star Wars series, which include this one, a second season of The Mandalorian and a series focused on young Obi Wan-Kenobi with Ewan McGregor reprising the role.
Haynes has been on a roll as of late, which started with directing the Emmy-winning Black Mirror episode “U.S.S. Callister,” starring Jesse Plemons. The special had a Star Trek-meets-Twilight Zone feel and is a fan favorite. He followed that up by directing the HBO movie Brexit starring Benedict Cumberbatch and also has the highly anticipated Amazon series Utopia, which premieres this Friday.
He is repped by WME and by Joe Phillips at Curtis Brown in the UK.
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