There won’t be an iconic yellow-lettered Star Wars opening crawl for Rogue One, but there will be a prologue that takes place 15 years before the start of the movie. This means part of the story of Jyn Erso and her family will happen just four years after Anakin Skywalker turned to the Dark side of the Force.
According to Movie Web, director Gareth Edwards confirmed that having an opening text crawl for Rogue One wasn’t going to happen because the text “would have been endless.” Instead, Edwards explained that a 15-year flashback will “take place before the action of the film and that is how the action is exposed.” In all likelihood, this refers to events already witnessed in the trailers for Rogue One. In those scenes Jyn Erso is a young girl, her father Galen is involved in some kind of shady deals with the Empire, and her mother gives her a crystal necklace so she can remember the Force.
References to larger galactic events like the Clone Wars and the rise of the Empire probably won’t be in this prologue, but you never know. Because the Death Star was being planned right before the Clone Wars, it’s possible the flashback sequences will build a lot of connections between Rogue One and the last of the Star Wars prequels, Revenge of the Sith. Galen and Jyn probably didn’t know Anakin Skywalker, but his actions shaped the galaxy in which they live.
Rogue One opens on December 16.