The Case for a True Rogue One 4K Experience

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I recently entered the world of 4K HDR thanks to the Xbox One S and have been experiencing how amazing movies look in the format. From having my eyes melt out of their sockets due to The Revenant to seeing one of my favorite movies in stunning detail with The Martian Extended, I continue to think how awesome it’ll be if Disney starts supporting the format by the time Rogue One hits home video.

Why Rogue One instead of The Force Awakens? Because Rogue One is was shot in the ARRIRAW 6.5 digital format. Where Abrams shot The Force Awakens on film, Rogue One is being filmed in a format that’s very friendly to being put on 4K UHD Blu-Ray.

According to IMDB, Rogue One is being made with a 4K Digital Intermediate. While anyone can edit IMDB and post anything they want, if this is true it bodes well for the future home video format of Rogue One.

With the exception of Sony’s Chappie and Fox’s Deadpool (which both had their effects done in 4K), most current 4K UHD Blu-Ray discs are from movies that had the theatrical releases produced from a 2K Digital Intermediate, and then the 4K version is an up-converted version of that. The reason they are from a 2K DI is because even if the live-action footage may be shot on something that gives a resolution more than 2K, the visual effects are usually only done in 2K to save time and money.

If it’s true that Rogue One will have a 4K DI, then it’s possible that ILM is doing the effects at that resolution. That means that if Disney decides to begin supporting the 4K UHD Blu-Ray format by the time Rogue One releases, then we’d have a true 4K Star Wars experience in the home without it being an up-conversion from a 2K source.

The selling point of a true 4K Star Wars experience would be huge for Disney if they manage to do that with Rogue One.

Disney traditionally waits a while to support a new home video format. They famously drove DVD adopters insane with the wait for their classic animated films on the format, but they did jump into Blu-Ray a little bit quicker with some early releases such as the Pirates films. There are rumors that we may see some 4K Disney discs by the end of the year, so that gives me hope that we’d be able to have our faces melted by a true 4K version of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story sometime around April of 2017.