George Lucas Doesn’t Want the Theatrical ‘Star Wars’ Films Re-Released

Shannen Ace

Mark Hamill, George Lucas, and Harrison Ford filming Star Wars

George Lucas Doesn’t Want the Theatrical ‘Star Wars’ Films Re-Released

George Lucas hopes that the theatrical versions of the “Star Wars” original trilogy will never be restored or re-released.

George Lucas Speaks Out on Possibility of ‘Star Wars’ Theatrical Re-Releases

A still from "Star Wars: A New Hope," in which Greedo points a blaster at Han Solo inside Mos Eisley cantina.

If you’ve watched “Star Wars: A New Hope” since 1997, you’ve probably seen Greedo shoot first at Han Solo in the Mos Eisley cantina. But anyone who saw “Star Wars” in theaters in 1977 will tell you Han shot first.

It’s the most famous change George Lucas made to the original three “Star Wars” films in the decades after their theatrical release. Starting with the 1997 “Special Edition,” Lucas added scenes and changed special effects, tweaking elements of the films pretty much until Disney acquired them in 2012. However, even Disney adjusted Greedo and Han’s duel slightly, adding a line of dialogue (“Maclunkey”) to the 2019 Disney+ version of “A New Hope.”

Fans have debated the “Han shot first” scene in particular, but also raised issues with some of Lucas’ other changes and have petitioned for the original theatrical versions to be re-released in some way.

But Lucas reiterated at the 2024 Cannes Film Festival that he hopes that never happens.

Mark Hamill, George Lucas, and Harrison Ford filming Star Wars.

“I’m a firm believer that the director, or the writer, or the filmmaker should have a right to have his movie be the way he wants it,” he said, comparing it to Michaelangelo’s process of painting and repainting the Sistine Chapel ceiling.

“We did release the original one on laserdisc and everybody got really mad,” Lucas added. “They said, ‘It looks terrible.’ And I said, ‘Yeah, I know it did.’ That is what it looked like.”

The initial LaserDisc re-release was in 1993. The theatrical versions were later included alongside the altered versions on special limited-edition DVD box sets released in 2006 and 2008. For those releases, the 1993 LaserDisc masters were not re-transferred, making them non-amorphic — i.e. in the wrong aspect ratio.

At Cannes, George Lucas was awarded with an honorary Palme d’Or. He also commented on artificial intelligence (AI) use in film, calling it “inevitable.”

“It’s like saying, ‘I don’t think these cars are going to work… let’s just stick with horses,'” he said. “You can say that, but that isn’t the way the world works.”

Source: Inverse

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