In one of the stranger stories to surface over the weekend, The Daily Mail reports the late Peter Cushing, star of countless horror flicks and two Doctor Who feature films, will rise from the grave to once again portray Grand Moff Tarkin in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Utilizing what their source calls "one of the most complex and costly CGI re-creations ever," special effects technicians are allegedly combing through hours of Cushing performances in other films to recreate the actor who so memorably played the imposing imperial governor with a leash on Darth Vader.
Their source also claims Tarkin is "a pivotal plot line as he was the one to create Darth Vader and there's a whole back story that will come out." Which … isn't how I remember things going down in Revenge of the Sith. He wasn't present at the "creation" of Darth Vader — and several scenes in Sith fit that description. I remember a weird, CGI-assisted Tarkin showing up on a Star Destroyer at the film's end as Vader and the Emperor look at the Death Star being constructed in the distance.
Come to think of it, Sith had its own Tarkin rumor centering on Christopher Eccelston appearing as the character.
Rogue One will take viewers on the dangerous mission that first gave the Rebellion the plans to the Death Star and stars Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, and Donnie Yen as part of the group charged with that crucial task. How and why Tarkin would appear for more than a few seconds is beyond me, but I guess I'm an old-timer with this Star Wars stuff and can't imagine why you'd force a new performance out of a long-dead actor.
Whether or not Cushing appears, the film will be released December 16th, 2016.