Poll: Riz Ahmed Talks Rogue One and Its “Edgy” Style

Bodhi Rook Rogue One

The Globe and Mail recently did an interview with actor Riz Ahmed wherein they discussed the slowly changing cultural diversity in the film business while touching on some high points in Ahmed’s growing career. In the interview Ahmed comments on the type of characters we can expect in the upcoming Rogue One: A Star Wars Story as well as the edgy camera-over-the-shoulder filming style of director Gareth Edwards.



From TheGlobeAndMail:

In Rogue One, Ahmed is Bodhi Rook, an Imperial cargo pilot from an occupied planet who’s forced to question his loyalties. “The movie has a series of complex characters with murky pasts or torn loyalties,” he says. “That, combined with its vérité feel – a rough-and-readiness in the camera work – makes it quite edgy.”


Riz Ahmed


In past interviews Kathleen Kennedy also mentioned Gareth Edwards’ filming style. Back in June she said:

“Gareth has shown a stylistic preference that’s much more handheld, visceral, inside-the-action kind of feel.

He does a lot of handheld, intimate, close-up work. That’s not something you’ve necessarily seen in a Star Wars movie before. And we brought in [cinematographer] Greig Fraser, to shoot it, who had done Zero Dark Thirty. So a combination of Greig and Gareth has been, I think, fantastic, and it just gives it a really unique style.”




Handheld camera cinematography is not unique to Edwards and has actually been used in the film industry since the 1920’s to various degrees of intensity. More recent films to have used this technique include Saving Private RyanThe Blair Witch Project, the Bourne films with Matt Damon – and perhaps most recently – Captain America: Civil War.


While movies like Cloverfield and Friday Night Lights were heavily criticized for the dizzying effect that the constant “shaky cam” style had on their audiences, other films like the Bourne movies and Saving Private Ryan were more successful in the employment of the handheld camera, using the technique to add a great deal of excitement to some of their more intense sequences.


However, while there is something to be said for wanting to make the audience feel as if they are experiencing the action first hand, too much of it may detract from the experience instead of enhance it.  What do you think about the handheld camera style?  Vote in the poll below and share your thoughts in the comment section.



[socialpoll id=”2386353″]



+ posts

Jordan Pate is Co-Lead Editor and Senior Writer for Star Wars News Net, of which he is also a member of the book and comic review team. He loves all things Star Wars, but when he's not spending time in the galaxy far far away, he might be found in our own galaxy hanging out in Gotham City or at 1407 Graymalkin Lane, Salem Center, NY.

Jordan Pate (Hard Case)

Jordan Pate is Co-Lead Editor and Senior Writer for Star Wars News Net, of which he is also a member of the book and comic review team. He loves all things Star Wars, but when he's not spending time in the galaxy far far away, he might be found in our own galaxy hanging out in Gotham City or at 1407 Graymalkin Lane, Salem Center, NY.

26 thoughts on “Poll: Riz Ahmed Talks Rogue One and Its “Edgy” Style

  • September 8, 2016 at 9:17 pm

    I don’t mind handheld when used properly. It can be disorienting in a film like Cloverfield but that’s because its found footage which to me is a total shit gimmick.

  • September 8, 2016 at 9:25 pm

    Lucas used it to good effect in the trash compactor scene in ANH.

    • September 9, 2016 at 1:05 am

      Given his student films and his affection for the documentary style and verite, I have the feeling that Lucas, if he cares to watch any of these new films, would approve.

  • September 8, 2016 at 11:35 pm

    People liked the cinematography of the Bourne movies? I think those were one of the most annyoing shaky cam flicks I’ve seen so far…

    • September 9, 2016 at 12:09 am

      Bourne ruined action movies for a while.

    • September 9, 2016 at 12:37 am

      I stopped watching them after the second one, and it was because of the shaky cam thing.

    • September 9, 2016 at 12:40 am

      Didn’t bother me at all. Enjoyed the 1st couple entries & the action scenes had quite a *visceral* feel to them.

    • September 9, 2016 at 1:54 pm

      Bourne III is the only movie I almost walked out of in the middle. I am still not sure why I stayed to the end of that Parkinson’s piece of crap.

  • September 9, 2016 at 12:07 am

    Just keep the shaky cam to a minimum please.

  • September 9, 2016 at 12:43 am

    When your film is centered on the “found footage” appeal. You are kind of forced to use the shaky cam. Luckily, Rogue One is using it just for stylistic effect in certain scenes. Too much of it, and you get disoriented, while using just the traditional tripod shots aren’t as visceral.

  • September 9, 2016 at 1:08 am

    Yay! Sanity is prevailing on the votes! If they aren’t going to try some stuff that wouldn’t fit within the saga films, then, from a creative perspective, why bother with these anthology movies at all? I generally loathe the lazy use of shaky-cam, but given what we know from the trailers and BTS footage so far, we know the whole thing isn’t being shot this way, so let’s just see what Edward’s comes up with.

    • September 9, 2016 at 1:18 am

      dear god, what is happening to you?

    • September 9, 2016 at 1:49 am

      you’re gonna need to change your profile pic to matt smith if you are going to be this optimistic. 😉

  • September 9, 2016 at 2:23 am

    I think much of dislike of handheld or “shaky cam” cinematography is do to poor staging and editing. There are directors that don’t bother to fully plan an action sequence so they just do “intense” camerawork and make lots of fast and hard cuts to get it across. Taken 3 is one the worst offenders in this respect. Meanwhile you can have a film like the Revenant that uses long takes and a dynamic camera to feel more immersive, in turn showing off the benefits of more pre-planning. I’d prefer this film reflects the latter, more realistic approach.

  • September 9, 2016 at 2:43 am

    Go watch the beach invasion opening from Saving Private Ryan. That’s what we are talking about here, not Cloverfield or Blair Witch.

  • September 9, 2016 at 2:52 am

    I’m so ready for this film.

  • September 9, 2016 at 3:05 am

    I’m uber ready to see a new kind of star wars. Sure we’ve had games, comics, and animations that have shown us bits of different takes on it, but this will be the first heavy movie that’s going for a different tone, so it will be really cool to see where it goes.

  • September 9, 2016 at 7:44 am

    Personally I dislike shaky cam. If they’re just going to jostle viewer’s brains I’d rather see Rogue One in a series of screenshots, because at least then I can see the incredible detail put into the costumes and sets.

  • September 9, 2016 at 11:14 am

    As long as it’s not as annoyingly shaky as a Paul Greengrass film.

  • September 9, 2016 at 1:48 pm

    I love the scene in Bourne: Ultimatum where they are all looking at a white board in a conference room and the cameraman was trying to add more excitement to it by having one of his many epileptic seizures….. oh wait. no I didn’t like that. never mind. (can you say Gimmick)

    Saving Private Ryan, on the other hand, was awesome.

    So please Gareth, do it right.

  • September 9, 2016 at 1:56 pm

    Never had a problem with shaky cam – be it in “found footage” movies or used stylistically (“Saving Private Ryan”, the Bourne series and so on). Actually – with maybe the exception of the Transformers series – I like it quite a bit.

    I’d love to see what a “found footage” movie – and/or, why not, a mockumentary – set in the Star Wars universe would look like.

  • September 9, 2016 at 2:30 pm

    Not totally new to Star Wars….George Lucas used a couple of shaky cam shots in AOTC in the final battle scenes

  • September 9, 2016 at 3:10 pm

    Depends on how shaky the cam is. I’m okay with it in some instances. I think Saving Private Ryan used it appropriately and just enough. When it’s used too much it feels overwhelming to me and just gives me a headache. The last Jason Borne movie, which I didn’t think was great, used too much shaky cam in my opinion. I got lost in what to follow as far as the action was concerned, thus, losing interest in something I am usually immersed in.

Comments are closed.