One of the big things that people took away from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was just how brutal the film was on its main cast - and the fact that pretty much none of them made it out alive.
However, it wasn't always so and in an interview with EW, screenwriter Gary Whitta explained that there was a much different ending in mind for Jyn Erso, Cassian Andor and the rest of the crew of Rogue One. "Kaytoo always died... Jyn did survive. Cassian (who had a different name in Whitta's draft of the script) also survived. There were a lot of casualties on both sides, in both versions of the scripts."
Yet, for both Gary Whitta and fellow screenwriter Chris Weitz, it was clear no matter how they looked at it that the team had to pay the ultimate price for their victory - but that the fact it was a Disney film meant it wouldn't happen. "If you’re going to give your life for anything, give your life for this, to destroy a weapon that going to kill you all anyway. That’s what we always wanted to do. But we never explored it because we were afraid that Disney might not let us do it, that Disney might think it’s too dark for a Star Wars movie or for their brand.”
As Whitta explained, subsequent drafts had it that the team survived - but only because they thought they couldn't get an ending where they died. "We were still scratching the itch that they all needed to die. Chris Weitz (who wrote another draft) thought we were right... they finally went off and fought for it. We told them, we feel they all need to die, and (Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy) and everyone else said to go for it."
"We got the ending we wanted."
Earlier treatments of the script also had a much different team to the one that made it into the final film. According to Whitta, Bodhi Rook, Bodhi Rook and Chirrut Imwe weren't mentioned and Felicity Jones' character, Jyn Erso, was just an enlisted soldier in the Rebellion rather than an extremist-turned-criminal.
What did you make of the ending of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story? Was it fitting that they all died or should they have made it out in the end? Let us know in the comments!