‘Star Wars’ saga will hit Blu-ray in 2011

Aug. 14, 2010 | 7:59 p.m.
George Lucas, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill

Big news out of Orlando, where George Lucas told the crowd at Star Wars Celebration V that all six live-action “Star Wars” films will be released next year on Blu-ray for the first time. In a press release that followed, Lucasfilm revealed that it would be a hefty boxed set “utilizing the highest possible picture and audio presentation, along with extensive special features – including documentaries, vintage behind-the-scenes moments, interviews, retrospectives and never-before-seen footage from the Lucasfilm archives.”

The scene at the Florida convention, where Lucas was joined onstage at one point by Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill, was described at StarWars.com, here’s an excerpt:

“Star Wars” fans were treated to a glimpse of bonus material, in the form of a long-lost deleted scene from “Return of the Jedi.” The scene has long been talked about online — a sequence that depicts Luke Skywalker assembling his new, green-bladed lightsaber prior to infiltrating Jabba the Hutt’s palace. After completing the Jedi weapon, Luke stashes it in R2-D2’s dome. What makes the “Jedi” deleted clip so remarkable is that it made it all the way to postproduction before it was cut, so it is a rare example of a cut scene with completed visual effects and music.

Actor Mark Hamill came out to describe the scene, remarking that once again his original introduction in a “Star Wars” film was cut out (his Anchorhead introduction was, of course, cut from A New Hope). Luke’s intro is purposely played as ominous, with his face cowled in shadows and his intentions unclear.”I had the black cloak, the glove, and I thought, wow, this time around I get to be the antagonist. Little did I know I was predicting the path of the prequels,” said Hamill, noting the similarities to Luke in this scene and Anakin Skywalker’s appearance.

That deleted scene is posted on You Tube — the audience reaction is priceless — but I suspect it won’t be there for very long considering that Lucasfilm attorneys move at light speed.

— Geoff Boucher


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Photo: Lucasfilm

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29 Responses to ‘Star Wars’ saga will hit Blu-ray in 2011

  1. Thanks for making that clip available.

  2. Els says:

    Guess he DOES need to find a new way to bilk more money out of the fans he has such disdain for. It's been a couple of years and "Clone Wars" tanked on DVD and Blu-Ray, "Indy 4" was a big bomb, so yeah, this makes sense. And lemming-like fans will start panting for more, please.

  3. Els says:

    Oh, and let me guess. It will be his "special editions." It had better be, because as I recall Lucas reps said a few years back that it was "impossible" to put the originals on DVD. Well, if you're still one of the faithful, good for you.

  4. "Indy 4" a bomb? The movie made $787 million in worldwide box office — that's more than "Iron Man" which came out in the same year.

  5. thespis42 says:

    Was it bilking fans of The Wizard of Oz to put it out on Blu-Ray? Was it bilking the fans before that to put movies on DVD when people had already bought VHS? The TV standard has changed. It was inevitable that Star Wars would be on Blu-Ray someday, and frankly I wish it had been sooner. I would much rather have a high-definition version on my shelf.
    Regarding the statements on Clone Wars–the movie may not have been well-regarded, but the series is coming back for a third season and has quite a following. It succeeds in doing the one thing none of the prequels could–making Anakin heroic.
    My hope would be that both versions of the OT would be available on Blu-Ray (and the original, unaltered versions were eventually released on DVD, by the way, despite Lucas' original denial that it would happen), but that is probably wishful thinking.

  6. Pooper says:

    I just hope that the Blu Ray release has a version of the original trilogy without all the lame edited and bonus scenes Lucas added. That's the version I',m going to buy.

    • Lisa says:

      Creating his original vision with the technology that didn't exist in the 70's isn't exactly lame. I'm pleased he was able to make the way he meant it to be and glad he had the foresight to film the scenes anyway with the missing elements and saved them. It was very forward thinking of him.

  7. Eyechild says:

    Meh, who cares?

  8. p says:

    I won't buy the new movies, so I won't be buying any boxed set. A year or so after, they'll probably put them out individually and I might pick them up then, but only the original three, I pretend the last three never existed.

  9. Hahaha! My Blu-Ray player's finally gonna get a REAL workout!

  10. Fleiter says:

    worst movies ever made.

  11. Horace Austin says:

    Will we see Han shoot first in Blu-ray?

  12. Horace Austin says:

    According to an article in yesterday's NY Times, only the Special Editions are on the Blu-ray release. According to Lucas, releasing the original versions on Blu-ray is "kind of an oxymoron, because the quality of the original is not very good.". He added that "It's a very, very expensive process to do it. So when we did the transfer to digital, we only transferred really the upgraded version."

  13. Heisenberg says:

    I have no idea what Blu Ray is, but I do know that is the best thing that will ever happen to it.
    STAR WARS > earth

  14. Sal Magana says:

    Dear Mr. Lucas. I'll strongly consider buying it if you please remove that god awful dance scene in Jabba's palace. I mean what was that, Solid Gold in space!? And please delete that stupid plant creature coming out of that monster pit from the desert of Tatooine because it's not supposed to be a plant creature its supposed to be how you originally intended, just a plain desert pit monster with ugly teeth and gums with some nasty tentacles coming from it. Otherwise all the "new" special effects came out cool especially the city in the clouds scenes.

  15. Kenny Kraly Jr. says:

    I will buy the star wars films on blu-ray day 1 buy on blu-ray in fall of 2011 and those of you who are knocking the release don't it's star wars.

  16. Stephen Anderson says:

    "very expensive" my foot. All the film is already digitized to add the new special effects, it's not like they are taking a printed film of the special editions and scanning that for hi-def. If he was interested in making money by spending money, he would re-make the special editions by re-compositing the original model photography. Then we would have the best of both worlds. Not gosh durn cartoon x-wings blowing up the death star. Cartoons are not real. Puppets and models are real things that you can photograph and people love star wars because for the most part it seems real, not a cartoon! If people wanted cartoons they would watch Clone Wars, which I won't even let my son watch, even though he begs and begs. And the toys, god! Kurtz is right, Kurtz is right. I am going to the alternate dimension right now where there are three high-quality star wars trilogies all produced by him. Thanks for reading. Ps, I loves ya!

  17. Frank says:

    If you refuse to release the Original Star Wars Trilogy, unretouched, no added scenes, on DVD or Blu Ray, in anamorphic widescreen in, at minimum, 480p, if not 1080p, I will continue to refuse to buy the Special Editions.

    I am not alone. There is a petition. If you are a true Star Wars fan, you will sign it.

    May the Force Be With You.

  18. Hi all, great site and interesting articles. I would like to commend your website Hotels Warsaw , who has recently formed and is growing in popularity. Are you sure you still here I’ll peer.

  19. Steven Crowley says:

    Hey guys, if that you would REALLY like to "Talk" About "How Good Indy 4 Is…I think that you have to Get out of here…This Is A "Star Wars" DISSCUSSION…

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