Darth Vader Is Officially In Rogue One

Guess who’s back, back again. Vader’s back, tell a friend. OK, that’s enough from you, Eminem. After hearing a familiar breath at the tail end of the first trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, we were all but convinced Darth Vader would be making some kind of appearance in Gareth Edwards’ forthcoming Star Wars spin-off. And now we can confirm he most definitely will be back.

We’re not entirely sure who exactly will be playing the OG Sith lord, but there might be some clues (or perhaps maybe even the answer to that question) in the Friday issue of Entertainment Weekly, which will include a cover story boasting exclusive first look images and deets. The good news is we actually have a few details about their details, which confirms Mads Mikkelsen will play Jyn Erso’s (Felicity Jones) estranged father, Forest Whitaker will play a familiar character to hardcore Star Wars fans, Alan Tudyk will play a droid, and Ben Mendelsohn will play the main baddie who’s “eager to earn the favour of the Emperor—and avoid the wrath of his black-masked enforcer.” I wonder who that could be.

Her are five major takeaways from the big ol’ reveal-y issue, straight from the horse’s mouth:

1. The background of our cover showcases new Imperial weaponry being used against the nascent Rebellion: taller, slimmer walkers known as AT-ACTs hauling cargo, and flatter, fang-like interceptors known as TIE Strikers.

2. New information about Jyn Erso (The Theory of Everything’s Felicity Jones), the outlaw who has clashed with both the Rebellion and the Empire, and now has a chance to clear her ledger of past wrongs by leading a mission for the good guys. It’s also personal—her father, played by Mads Mikkelsen, is a scientist whose knowledge is sought by both sides.

3. Full details of the squad of characters uniting to take on the Empire, played by the most multicultural cast to appear in a Star Wars film yet: Diego Luna, Jiang Wen, Donnie Yen, Riz Ahmed, Forest Whitaker, and Alan Tudyk—as a performance-capture droid. (One of these has been seen before by Star Wars fans.)

4. A look at the skullduggery inside the Imperial ranks, as seen through the eyes of a new villain: Ben Mendelsohn’s ambitious officer, who’s eager to earn the favour of the Emperor—and avoid the wrath of his black-masked enforcer. Candid revelations from the filmmakers about what the current reshoots are adding to the story as the film nears its December release.

5. Finally, confirmation of what fans have hoped ever since the project was announced: Vader is back. We have a run-down of the Sith lord’s first day on set, and what his return means for the larger Star Wars storytelling universe.

Check out EW’s cover below.