I am a huge “Star Wars” fan. My parents took me to see the first film when I was 10 years old. The queue stretched around the block, and I’ve never forgotten the frisson of excitement I felt when the star destroyer slowly filled the screen. I spent my teenage years wanting to be Han Solo. (Actually, I still do. My husband is more of a Chewbacca, and my kids cosplay Rey and Kylo Ren; the fights are impressive.)
One of the performances that stayed with me from that first viewing was Peter Cushing as Grand Moff Tarkin, Governor of the Empire’s fearsome battle station, the Death Star. Cushing was already a wonderfully sinister legend, even to a 10-year-old British girl. Watching “Rogue One,” I was delighted to see the character of Governor Tarkin appear on screen almost forty years on, apparently unchanged. However, rather than blanket praise for the work of the Industrial Light and Magic team (the special effects wizards behind the whole Star Wars franchise), the character’s physical appearance, so famously linked to that of the deceased actor, caused a babble of concern across the press and social media.