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Star Wars DVD Box Set Released 536

Posted by timothy
from the getcher-disk-on dept.
dealsites writes "CNN reports that George Lucas is releasing the Star Wars DVD box set early on September 21, 2004 due to piracy concerns. Lucas had intended to release the box set of the original 3 movies after Episode III: Revenge of the Sith was released. However, he mentions that due to piracy concerns the profits are being eaten up and there might not be a market for the films at that time. The box set contains the changes that Lucas has made from the original releases. CNN also reports on the top 5 major changes. Lucas is quoted as saying that he never intends to re-release the original 3 movies in the first CNN link."
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Star Wars DVD Box Set Released

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  • by bje2 (533276) * on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:21AM (#10306672)
    Attack of the Clones [slashdot.org]!!!
    • yeah, exactly. If he was going to wait till after no. III, he may as well just release a big stonking 6 disc set instead.... as it stands, the DVD box set came out yesterday in the UK, and that's always been the date since way back in April, IIRC...
    • UK release yesterday (Score:5, Informative)

      by CountBrass (590228) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:45AM (#10306802)

      Got to be a first, we actually got a US release *before* the US, rather than 3 months later as is usually the case.

      Wife and I watch epIV last night (and yes Greedo and Han do shoot at the same time) and thoroughly enjoyed it: the improvements are noticable: especially compared to our worn out VHS copy ;-) some changes (all the wild life wandering in and around Mos Eisley for example) seem a little gratuitous but not over the top.

      I'd give it a thimbs up so far (but then I always did like IV, V was risible, ewoks *spit*, and VI was OK).

  • Sure. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Phexro (9814) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:23AM (#10306682)
    Yeah, the Star Wars franchise is really suffering due to piracy.

    Versus, say, producing two completely crap prequels, oversaturating the tie-in market, and then not releasing the original versions that many people want to buy.

    George Lucas doesn't need any more of your money, and this seems to be reflected by the decisions he has made as of late.
    • Re:Sure. (Score:3, Interesting)

      by BathTub (75720)
      I don't know if that is what George Lucas actually believes but I certainly don't believe it. I think that he waited another few years for the DVDs they would be going out of fashion, and the next big thing (HD DVD) is more likely, which of course he will be able to milk then too.
    • Re:Sure. (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Jugalator (259273)
      At least we got the original trilogy DVD. But I guess I'm in minority who actually appreciate this DVD and don't care much about who bloody fires first. :-)
      • Who? George Lucas?

        Oh you mean that fire. Sorry.
      • by BRock97 (17460) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:03AM (#10306906) Homepage
        "At least we got the original trilogy DVD."

        I hate to disagree, but we did not get the original trilogy. We got a trilogy that has been monkeyed with and, in parts, made worse while in other parts made better. On the whole, I like what he did to the three (even though I have seen the Hayden Christensen thing at the end of Jedi and hugely dislike it), but this is definately not the original trilogy.

        Personally, I think that is what Lucas is worried about. Here you have three movies how he wanted them, now complete we can assume. But, a great many people hate the changes. So much so that in recently (like in the last couple of years), those with the laserdisc originals have been painstakenly moving those over to DVD and those are appearing online. I believe this is the piracy that Lucas is talking about. He wants to make those originals go away (he said so [yahoo.com] recently).
        • by gfxguy (98788) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:19AM (#10307016)
          Here you have three movies how he wanted them, now complete we can assume.

          See, this excuse is really annoying. So, for some reason, he couldn't make Greedo and Han shoot at the same time in 1977? And it was so difficult to fix, he still couldn't get it right in revisions? Yes, that's right... it took 2004 technology to make both shoot at the same time.

          Maybe with 2004 technology they could've given Greedo glasses so that he wouldn't miss from two feet away.
        • by Joey7F (307495) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @09:15AM (#10307476) Homepage Journal
          "At least we got the original trilogy DVD."


          I hate to disagree, but we did not get the original trilogy. We got a trilogy that has been monkeyed with and, in parts, made worse while in other parts made better. On the whole, I like what he did to the three (even though I have seen the Hayden Christensen thing at the end of Jedi and hugely dislike it), but this is definately not the original trilogy.


          I think this may come from me seeing the original movies in 1999 when I was 16, but I always thought Anakin should have been a young guy at the end of Jedi given the argument that Darth Vader killed him 30 years ago. It is still a great ending, and if anything, I think this was an actual improvement. My top 4 grrr... changes have been improved / fixed. Greedo/Han (fire simulataneously, not as bad), Luke screaming as he fell in ESB (back to the way it was), the Emperor (is consistent through out), Jabba scene (looks more consistent) etc.

          I seriously wonder how many complaints there would be if more people liked the prequels. I like them, especially AOTC, which is my favorite of all 6 (yeah, even ESB, so suck on it). I am looking forward to Episode 3...

          --Joey
          • I seriously wonder how many complaints there would be if more people liked the prequels. I like them, especially AOTC, which is my favorite of all 6 (yeah, even ESB, so suck on it). I am looking forward to Episode 3...

            I'm sorry, did we see the same movies? There is a HUGE difference in quality of writing between the original trilogy and the prequels. Lucas cannot write dialogue to save his life. "I hate sand" has got to be the most awkward lines of dialogue EVER. He tries to portray a love between Ana
          • "I think this may come from me seeing the original movies in 1999 when I was 16, but I always thought Anakin should have been a young guy at the end of Jedi given the argument that Darth Vader killed him 30 years ago. It is still a great ending, and if anything, I think this was an actual improvement."

            Ok, I have to disagree with this. Anakin never was killed by Vader in any sense of the word. If he HAD been, then Luke couldn't have seen any good in Vader, any remnant of Anakin, and couldn't have turned h
    • Re:Sure. (Score:4, Funny)

      by gfxguy (98788) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:10AM (#10306948)
      He has to blame something when every man, woman, and child on the planet don't buy a copy.

      Reporter: "You were expecting roughly six billion sales, but only 10 million were sold. Care to comment?"

      Lucas: "Must be piracy."
    • Re:Sure. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Technician (215283) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:44AM (#10307209)
      and then not releasing the original versions that many people want to buy.


      When they released the first one to the big screen, they announced they would never release it to the home market. I saw it on the big screen. Because they would never release it to the home market, piracy couldn't hurt anything. I was overseas and picked up a nth generation VHS copy. (not good quality) Because of piracy, about 4 years later they released a VHS version. They missed the market by not filling the void. They should have sold into the market when the demand was high. It's a case of a company not listening to it's consumers.

      Now that consumers may want the original theatrical version, why is a studio going to play the it's not for sale game again.. Will they ever learn.

      Some movies I am hesitant to buy simply because it becomes a pig in a poke. Close Encounters of the Third Kind is a good example of this. There are at least 3 versions out. The original big screen version I don't think they ever released to the home market. The re-done one (with out the crazy scene of ripping up the garden, upsetting the lady with the ducks next door, and tossing everyting into the kitchen window) and the extended version with the extra footage of the ship.

      Get a clue. Release the uncut big screen version in a timely manner. If I know I can get the full version legaly in good quality, than there is less incentive to look elsewhere.

      If you want additional scenes, or an alternate ending, put it in the menu on DVD.
      • Re:Sure. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by mark-t (151149) <markt@lynx.b c . ca> on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @12:42PM (#10309650) Journal
        Except for one, small, detail....

        The "home market" didn't even exist yet when Star Wars first came out in 1977.

    • Re:Sure. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Maestro4k (707634) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:51AM (#10307279) Journal
      • and then not releasing the original versions that many people want to buy.
      If there really is a huge piracy problem for the original trilogy then this is the reason why. People have been begging, screaming, whining and complaining about the lack of a DVD release of the original trilogy at least since Episode I came out on DVD. That's been about 4 years now so of course people are going to start turning to alternatives. I'd be willing to bet a large amount of those "pirating" the original trilogy own the VHS version and have already preordered the DVD boxset.

      Personally I have the only digital version released up till now -- the laserdisc version. Still I'm not keen on the two pauses you have to deal with per movie (one double-sided disc, one single sided per movie) so I preordered the box set. There's not a huge number of people with laserdisc players (even at the height of their popularity, such as it was) much less both a player and the Star Wars LDs, everyone else wanting a digital version has been SOL up till today.

      While that doesn't really make it right that people have pirated it, I'm not going to be feeling sorry for Lucas. Quite frankly, he brought that particular piracy mess on himself by being stubborn and ignoring fan requests. He'll still make barrel loads of money off the DVD boxset anyway so it's not like he's going to suffer. Neither are those that worked on the original trilogy, he did share profits with the cast and crew on The Empire Strikes Back at least, I believe he did so on Return of the Jedi as well. (For those buying the boxset the new documentary included will tell the details, I caught it on A&E a few weeks back.) About the only "victims" I can see for piracy of the original trilogy would be the stores who didn't have the product to sell in the first place.

      And frankly it'd sell well even if he'd made us wait as long as he originally intended, although he may have lost all remaining fan goodwill towards him.

    • Re:Sure. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @09:21AM (#10307530)
      George Lucas would be a good candidate for residence in Mos Eisley. He isn't quite the scum of the universe, but he is a known liar regarding the future and fate of Star Wars. He's claimed, at various times, that he intended Star Wars to be 1, 3, 6 and 9 films - from the start! No matter what the current plan, he's always had it in mind. It took him several decades to even admit that Star Wars was not only not originally planned to be 3, 6 or 9 films, but that it didn't even have an original plot or characters, and was a reconstitution of The Hidden Fortress in a space setting. He steadfastly denied that negative fan reaction to elements of The Phantom Menace (idiot Jar Jar, whiny Hayden) caused changes in Attack of the Clones - nope, he'd planned it that way from the start. He's even on record lying to Steven Spielberg about having 3 Indiana Jones films ready - from the start. It could be a pathological condition. Perhaps Lucas is a megalomaniac and always needs to perceive himself as the sole architect. The point of all this is, don't expect that Lucasfilm/Fox won't be hawking the original versions sometime, for some extreme premium, just because Lucas currently says that isn't going to happen. For all we know, he planned for the originals to be released on DVD when he first conceived of all 15 movies of Star Wars... we just haven't been informed yet.

      In all likelihood he's probably trying to drive up fan demand. He's been constantly commenting on the release of "the originals" in the press for about 2 years now.

      And piracy doesn't affect squat - what people really want to pirate doesn't exist because Lucas hasn't authorized it yet. You can pirate HDTV rips if you just want the movies, but the originals on DVD, with brand-new new bells and whistles and the attractive packaging we all enjoy, will sell like hotcakes when released even if they're pirated non-stop from now until then.

      If Lucas actually isn't lying for once, consider that he's 60 years old and could retire, cede control to someone else, or pass away at pretty much any time now. Even if his mind's made up now, it might not be his choice to make for much longer.
    • Re:Sure. (Score:5, Funny)

      by rabel (531545) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @09:44AM (#10307730)
      Versus, say, producing two completely crap prequels, oversaturating the tie-in market, and then not releasing the original versions that many people want to buy.
      Actually, what I think really happened is that George accidentally overwrote the original movie when doing his editing.

      "Damn! I should have Saved As rather than Saved. Oh, man.. the fans are going to be pissed, that was the only copy of the original movie and I just overwrote it with these edits. What to do... what to dooooo?? *jumping up and down wringing hands*

      "I know, I'll just pretend like that's what I meant to do all along! I'm sure they'll understand since *I* am the true Lord of the Sith! " *picks up toy light saber, starts making wha-wha sounds*
  • by alnapp (321260) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:24AM (#10306691) Homepage
    Star Wars here [thedigitalbits.com] and Empire and Jedi here [thedigitalbits.com]
  • No Market? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    No Market? seriously now...there are 1,000,000,000 people foaming @ the mouth at the prospect of buying an "official" Star Wars Trilogy DVD Set....right?!?!
  • Bad Wikipedia link (Score:5, Informative)

    by Jugalator (259273) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:25AM (#10306696) Journal
    ... and here's a user-edited, unauthoritative, small, article from Wikipedia about the changes [wikipedia.org] in case anyone missed them. Please use multiple sources to confirm the validity of this information.
  • HA HA HA HA HA! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    However, he mentions that due to piracy concerns the profits are being eaten up and there might not be a market for the films at that time

    Yeah, and I'm sure that it has NOTHING to do with

    1. The fact that everyone in the world who might want to buy copies of the Star Wars trilogy already owns it
    2. The people who love the Star Wars trilogy enough they might buy new copies even though they already own it don't want anything with Lucas's stupid "digital enhancements" on them

    It's becoming increasingly the ca
  • by koh (124962) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:25AM (#10306698) Journal

    George Lucas is releasing the Star Wars DVD box set early on September 21, 2004 due to piracy concerns.
    s/piracy/marketing/g
  • by Zog The Undeniable (632031) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:27AM (#10306705)
    Looks really good in terms of picture quality, but Han/Greedo obsessives will not be placated; they now shoot at almost exactly the same time. And Sebastian "Anakin Skywalker" Shaw (at least in his non-disfigured state) has been CGI'd out of history and replaced with a mulleted Hayden Christensen.
  • Too Late (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mirko (198274) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:27AM (#10306710) Journal
    Lucas used Microsoft's strategy which consists of pre-announcing a product long before it'd be released.

    The problem is that I made my mind and I am not sure I want to acquire this set because I am unsure I might watch it again and again...
    This observation came after somebody lent me the 3-DVD set of the Indiana Jones Trilogy (which happened to have gotten really... obsolete) : I then thought it could be the same with SW.

    But otherwise, had he released it today without pre-announcing it, I might have considered buying it... Simply because of the surprise effect which he voluntarily spoiled.
  • Ehm, logic anyone? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Colonel Sponsz (768423) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:30AM (#10306720)
    Hm, let's see here:
    * Fans are screaming after the original, non-Special Edition version.
    * Lucas admits he's never going to release the original version.

    So, the only way to get the original trilogy, on a decent medium (VHS doesn't count, Laserdisc isn't an option for 99% of the people out there) is through... piracy?

    Now, here comes the big irony:
    * Lucas releases the Star Wars SE DVDs early, over fear for piracy concerns.

    Way to go Lucas!
    • by zoeblade (600058) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:16AM (#10306992) Homepage

      Now, here comes the big irony: Lucas releases the Star Wars SE DVDs early, over fear for piracy concerns.

      No, the big irony is making a film [imdb.com] in which people have to buy products for the sake of it, presumably pointing out that this would be a bad idea, then going on to make another film [imdb.com] which you proceed to market toys for, do deals with fast food eateries over, and so on.

    • Seriously... I spent the weekend downloading the *fantastic* Non-SE DVDs off BitTorrent. The reason I did this? Because of the confirmation that there wouldn't be a non-SE release from Lucas himself. These version don't exist in his eyes? The new ones don't exist in mine.

      Gimme a call when you change your mind, Lucas, as I'm sure you will.
  • Greedo! (Score:2, Funny)

    by ImaLamer (260199)
    From the article:

    (sadly, Greedo still shoots first on the DVD of "A New Hope")

    Damn you Slashdot!

    My hopes were up for nothing, why should I buy this now?
    • Re:Greedo! (Score:5, Funny)

      by yorugua (697900) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:22AM (#10307045)
      CNN : If the SE series is the Star Wars you " really wanted to make", can you please describe the technical difficulties when filming Greedo shooting first with the 70's technology so that you had to came up with Han shooting first instead? George : eeehhhh, aahhhhh....
  • Already in europe (Score:3, Interesting)

    by blackmonday (607916) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:31AM (#10306727) Homepage
    I've been in Europe for 2 weeks, and it's been available at least since last week. It's selling for 79 euros, about 100 dollars. They're having TV promotions and everything. I thought most stuff showed up in Europe last?
  • "due to piracy concerns the profits are being eaten up"

    So, if they just stopped being concerned about pirates, theyød keep their profits. Laywars^H^H^H^H^Hwyers are quite expensive these days, aren't they?

    -Lars
  • misquote (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Lucas was misquoted! He actually said "I will never ever release the unaltered originals unless it would be profitable, which it would, so I will."

    Lucas went on to say that "I will only release these altered versions if I think people might buy them, which they wouldn't if I'd already announced the unaltered versions, which I never ever will."

    The Lucas-bot then began spinning uncontrollably, shouting "Abort! Abort! until his handlers declared the press conference to be over.
    • "I will never ever release the unaltered originals unless it would be profitable, which it would, so I will."

      Expect the release of "Star Wars Classic" sometime in 2006. You know there are some fanboys that will start forming the line tonight.
  • I don't get it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by chrisgeleven (514645) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:36AM (#10306755) Homepage
    The majority of Slashdot readers seem to be pissed about the greatest trilogy of all-time being released on the most popular video format right now.

    Yes I know it isn't the original trilogy. But the SE is damn close to being it. Some of Lucas' "improvements" are *gasp* actually improvements! Yes, I know it isn't what was originally released, but this is Lucas' story and he owns the rights, so he is allowed to tinker with it until he is satisfied.

    When I watch the SE, I don't vomit, I don't cry, I don't think about some part of my childhood slipping away. The great parts of the movie are still there. Luke meeting Obi-wan, the sunset, meeting Han, saving Leia, Obi-wan vs. Vader, "I am your father", the final duel, etc. It is all there still, just like it was back in the day.

    The movies still give me that chill during certain scenes, where they just touch some part inside that you never knew you had.

    Yes it might not be the originals, but I'll take 99% of the original on DVD over nothing. Maybe if you don't agree you should go watch again with an open mind. Instead of saying "why the fuck did Lucas change this! It isn't the same!" ask yourself "there must be a good reason for this."

    Now I am going to go watch my copy of the trilogy...on DVD!
    • Re:I don't get it (Score:3, Interesting)

      by 0123456 (636235)
      "Some of Lucas' "improvements" are *gasp* actually improvements!"

      Which ones? I can't think of any offhand, and most of the "improvements" are awful.
      • Re:I don't get it (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Achoi77 (669484)
        I'm gonna guess that most of the improvements are going to be over the picture [slashdot.org] and sound quality(the whole 5.1 sound thing, which VHS didn't carry too well - yeah yeah, laserdisk has the same).

        Whoops [theforce.net], nevermind the sound quality :-)

        Slightly offtopic, after we got a 5.1 stereo set for the living room TV, watching dvds haven't been the same since. Those two little speakers from the TV just don't cut it (watch Master and Commander on both and you'll hear the difference). I'm pretty sure this dvd set will h

    • Re:I don't get it (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Illserve (56215) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:42AM (#10307192)

      Yes he has the right to do this. I've also got the rights to do alot of things I shouldn't.

      You should be outraged because it's a very disturbing outcome of the digital age, that classics of the past will change gradually and people will eventually forget the way things were.

      It dilutes our cultural history and we should be outraged, *especially* if he's not going to release the originals.

    • This is just a guess, but I think every movie garners a certain "integrity" in the technologies which were used to make it. Certain techniques were used to create it, and the movie audiences know based on viewing LOTS of TV and films over the years what fits and what doesn't (perhaps without quite appreciating it). CGI doesn't fit in the original Star Wars, at least not for major visible additions (clean up and touch up is fine).

      Of course, a lot of it is nostalgia, too. But what's wrong with that? I st
    • Re:I don't get it (Score:5, Interesting)

      by BigJimSlade (139096) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @09:19AM (#10307511) Homepage
      Now I am going to go watch my copy of the trilogy...on DVD!

      Me too! I'm going to watch the original movie I watched as a child on DVD, without any changes! No rose-colored glasses, with things changed to how they "should've been".

      Real artists don't go into a museum, take their painting off the wall and change it whenever they have a whim. It's one thing to touch up the special effects... it's another to insert/replace characters in the movie, changing the meaning of entire scenes by changing character's actions.

      I think if Lucas had any respect for the work he had done in the past, he would want to preserve it. In the meantime, I'll be doing my best to make sure that the movie how I saw it still exists for me to enjoy with my children someday.
  • I read the CNN article about the changes, and it strikes me that Lucas wasn't satisfied with dumbing it down, so he did more. The part about Greedo shooting first is simply inexcusable (yes, I know it is old).

    Then he said the origionals won't be re-released. Come on now, I know Lucas has decided to turn in his testicles and make things all happy and pretty and safe, but why do you have to taint things that are already done?

    I saw the midnight showing of PM, and the noon showing, and waked away wondering wh
  • by CliffH (64518) <cliff.hairston@gm a i l.com> on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:36AM (#10306759) Homepage Journal

    ... to buy a laserdisc player, buy the trilogy on LaserDisc (my dad still has the original trilogy), record to DVD, and voila. Star Wars Episodes IV, V, and VI the way they were ORIGINALLY viewed. As an added bonus, the LaserDiscs do sound better than any VHS your going to find and the picture (barring laser rot or a warped LD) is pretty nice too. :)

    CliffH

  • Wohoo (Score:2, Interesting)

    by mowler2 (301294)
    So now it might be on all the torrent trackers, nice.

    A thought: if I have bought the original VHS movies, is it morally wrong if I download this higher quality version of the same movie that I have already bought?
    • Why not? The movie industry already claims you ownly have a license, and that if you own a Macrovisioned, CSSd, or other copy inhibited medium, that they won't provide a backup.
    • Re:Wohoo (Score:3, Interesting)

      by alwayslurking (555708)

      This handy ethics flowchart [lnreview.co.uk] is designed for music, but it works for films too.

      In this particular case I think it says yes, on the basis that the company isn't making the originals available.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:40AM (#10306772)
    There wouldn't be so many of us dedicating bittorrent bandwidth to sharing these if he'd just release the damn movies in their original theatrical release.

    I personally had already waited years for the DVD release, and would have happily waited another year and just bought the damn thing. But I've bought the original series THREE TIMES already; on CED videodisc, then twice on VHS (the first one wore out), then I bought the "special edition" on VHS, which was good because it told me I didn't want to ever see THAT again.

    All I want is an archival quality copy of the ORIGINAL movies. I would have paid for it even though I've already bought the damn movies 3+ times. But it's not for sale. I hate to call it pirating, it's just that I'm just not buying what Lucas is selling.
  • by AndrewStephens (815287) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:42AM (#10306783) Homepage
    • Jedi Don't Scream
      This is a good, it sounded stupid. Kudos to Lucas for correcting a mistake
    • Boba Fett has a new voice
      Again, not a bad for consistency.
    • A new and improved Jabba
      Thank god, the SE scene looked incredible dumb. Hopefully they have also removed the Han walking over Jabba's tail bit with some creative editing. Actually, I wish that the whole scene was removed, or greatly shortened since Greedo basically repeats all the information to Han later on.
    • The emperor's new clothes
      Fair enough, since we all know by now that Palpatine is the emperor (or do we...)
    • The big finale
      Everyone seems to be complaining about this, but I think it makes sense. The picture circulating on the net looks a bit stupid though, seeing Christensen smiling untouched at the end looks somehow wrong. He could at least look a bit guilty for wiping out the Jedi. Still the original wasn't much better.
    Final Verdict: mainly positive
    • Actually, I wish that the whole scene was removed, or greatly shortened since Greedo basically repeats all the information to Han later on.

      Earlier on, but you're right. There's a reason for that:

      Link [ign.com]

      IGNFF: I've heard different stories. One was that it was never intended to be in the film, that it was just a let's see if we can do this, and replace it later. The other school of thought was, it was always supposed to be there.

      KURTZ: Well, the original idea was that it was supposed to be there. It is

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:43AM (#10306790)
    "These aren't the DVDs you're looking for."
  • by Illserve (56215) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:43AM (#10306792)
    "But the most noticeable change -- and perhaps one some "Star Wars" diehards will have a tough time stomaching -- is Hayden Christensen (who plays young Anakin in the prequel trilogy) now appearing in the scene where the "force ghosts" of Anakin, Obi Wan, and Yoda smile at Luke."

    he stoles it from us, my precious
    Filthy filthy changeses!!
  • by Blue23 (197186) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:43AM (#10306793) Homepage
    Look, it's well established that the first three movies are a classic. But some of the changes seem to bring the classic in line with the latest shovel-fed garbage. Redubbing Boba Fett's voice? Replacing the Anakin Skywalker ghost?

    It's like taking Dracula (the original) and "updating" it so it's got smoother continuity with all of the cheesy vampire moves made over the years.

    Guess what - there already is a break between the original trilogy and the 2/3 releases prequel trilogy. If you need to adjust to bring them in line, adjust the new junk to be in line with the classic, not the other way around!

    Hopping mad,
    =Blue(23)
  • Piracy (Score:5, Insightful)

    by here4fun (813136) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:45AM (#10306801) Homepage Journal
    In some ways, the studio's are just as unethical as a pirate. They will re-release a movie over and over again. First comes the vanilla version, with maybe a trailer and nothing else. Then comes the Collectors Edition, with a commentary track and production notes. Then comes the Directors Cut with added footage, remastered nontheless. Why can't they release the best version first? Instead, if you want the movie and the extra's, you have to buy it twice. BTW, this all comes after the $10 movie ticket price where popcorn is $5 and a coke is $5 and you have to sit through half an hour of commercials if you want a good seat. Now tell me again, how are the pirates unethical? What money are they taking away from the studios? Clearly piracy ain't cutting in on the movie ticket sales, or any of the special edition sets.

    This is not to say that piracy is good, but considering how the movie studios treat the customers, I don't feel bad for them one but. Maybe if the movie studio's treated me better I would have more sympathy for them (for example, quit with the half hour advertising before a movie). Oh, and my biggest DVD gripe, STOP WITH THE ADVERTISING THAT CAN'T BE SKIPPED.

    BTW, in unreleated news, I was reading that movie studios will now accept advertising in movies. Like in "I, Robot" the studio recieved money for a shoe commercial (converse shoes, I think). What is next? I can just see some of the classic movies, improved with product placement. I can just imagine Citizen Cane where everyone where's nike shoes and drinks Pepsi.

    • Re:Piracy (Score:3, Insightful)

      by jratcliffe (208809)
      "They will re-release a movie over and over again. First comes the vanilla version, with maybe a trailer and nothing else. Then comes the Collectors Edition, with a commentary track and production notes. Then comes the Directors Cut with added footage, remastered nontheless...This is not to say that piracy is good, but considering how the movie studios treat the customers, I don't feel bad for them one but."

      Yeah, I fully agree. I was pretty outraged when Peter Jackson came to my house with a shotgun, dra
  • This is from a recent AP interview [qctimes.com] with George Lucas.

    Q: Why not release both the originals and special editions on DVD?

    A: The special edition, that's the one I wanted out there. The other movie, it's on VHS, if anybody wants it. ... I'm not going to spend the, we're talking millions of dollars here, the money and the time to refurbish that, because to me, it doesn't really exist anymore. It's like this is the movie I wanted it to be, and I'm sorry you saw half a completed film and fell in love with it.

  • I got my DVD box set yesterday so spent last night watching Star Wars.

    Picture quality was good overall but they have really upped the colour saturation. The other changes I didn't like was the new blaster bolts and the lightsaber "flares". Now whenever two lightsabers touch I large flash appear on screen that even shows in of objects that should be blocking it (Like Darth Vader's back in the Obi Wan showdown). I'm half expecting a recall announcement due to how crap they look.
  • I knew it (Score:3, Funny)

    by SQLz (564901) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:48AM (#10306823) Homepage Journal
    From interview:

    Q: Why did you rework the original trilogy into the special-edition versions in the late 1990s?

    LUCAS: To me, the special edition ones are the films I wanted to make.....

    I knew it all along. Given enough time and money, he would have fucked up the first 3 episodes anyway. Obviously they were all just luck.
  • It was out yesterday over here in the UK.

    I have so far resisted its siren call...
  • The process of creating these DVDs takes some amount of time I would imagine. I wonder if Lucas planned to do it this way all along?

    Or is it possible to crank out a box set last minute?
  • Lets all keep in mind two things.

    1. Its all fodder for the massive publicity machine. We're talking about, that will sell the box set. Lucasfilms is very aware that the /. community types will buy this no matter what (with of course some die hard exceptions out of protest). In the mean time, all this talk means everyone else will be more and more aware of the release and its 'improvements' -- and many will buy it.

    Say anything you want about me, just spell my name right -- classic marketing.

    2) ITS JU
  • Has anyone spared a thought for this poor guy? For years, he was Boba Fett.. that was his claim to fame.. Now even his voice in has been replaced by Temura Morrison or as we down here in NZ like to call him "dear old movie whore" for his ability to pop up in the most unlikely movies (the worst being Vertical Limit with that horrible fake shifting accent as the helicopter pilot). I mean sure he can say "thats me" and point... but people will just say "you don't look Maori to me man.." :)

  • He's basically saying that all Star Wars fans are pirates suffering from obsessive/compulsive disorder!

    He's saying we will all pirate his movies as soon as they are posted somewhere, but if he releases them... we will all go out and buy them rather than waiting for someone to post them.

    WTF?!?

    Way to win a loyal customer base, bonehead!

  • by mrshowtime (562809) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @07:59AM (#10306884)
    For once video piracy has a positive effect. I bought the HK bootleg dvd several years ago, but I already owned several versions of the SW trilogy on Laserdisc, let alone the countless vhs tapes I still have. In effect, Lucas has given free reign to pirates to pirate the original trilogy (unenhanced) for good. Lucas himself has said that the original trilogy does not exist anymore, thus giving free reign to copy it. If he really did push up the release of the original trilogy because of piracy, then he did it for the wrong reasons.

    People will buy the Star Wars Trilogy FOREVER, no matter what formats come after DVD. In 2020, people will buy the "Holovision" version of the Trilogy, just as many bought the dvds today.

    I can agree with Lucas' decision to "enhance" the trilogy to his original vision, but to deny the release of the original versions, just because he is stubborn is just him being a prick.
  • Mothers... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by chrysrobyn (106763) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:04AM (#10306909)

    My mom knows that I enjoyed Star Wars and even bought a great number of the Lego sets a few years ago. I think my wife and I may have singlehandedly kept Vermont Toy and Hobby open for a while...

    My mom heard on the TV a long time ago that the Star Wars DVDs were coming out. Last time I talked with her, she excitedly told me that the release date was coming up, and of course I knew about it, but was it marked on my calendar? I tried to fend off this Christmas gift in the making becase I recognized that excited tone in her voice.

    Most of us have a decent ability to explain pet peeves and flaws in our obsessions to others with similar backgrounds or obsessions. My mother has nothing in her universe that can compare with enjoying Star Wars. She sees bad acting and a story line reminiscant of the Lone Ranger and his predescessors, so she thinks that even better special effects and additional scenes can only make it better, can't they?! I tried explaining the cantina scene to her. She remembers vaguely that there was some violence, but she remembers Han Solo (Harrison Ford) being involved. I explained that Lucas changed his mind on who shot first and the repercussions involved to me.

    I'm not sure I actually got through. The difference between Han Solo defending himself and shooting first (under the table no less) is a world of character development to me, and my mother seemed to understand what that meant in terms of defining who the characters were. I told her that we had just inherited the laser disc version of the original triology so that one of these years we'd just have to transfer that to a better version. Of course, we could save ourselves the work and just find a torrent since we have all the source material bought, paid for and licensed just not yet ripped to DVD / MPEG.

    Of course, maybe she was just listening to the sound of my voice. I probably should expect the DVDs under the Christmas tree this year. I have to ready a look of absolute childish joy on my face because she cares enough to remember my insterests.

  • by kc_cyrus (759211) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:07AM (#10306933)
    The Web site for the DVD Entertainment Group [dvdinformation.com] (their BOD [dvdinformation.com] is stocked with bigwigs from the large entertainment and electronics companies) states that "DVD [is] the fastest adopted consumer electronics product ever". There have been literally thousands of news articles written about the explosive growth of DVD sales; here are some quotes from an article on the CBS News Web site [cbsnews.com](from 10/2003):

    Home video sales now account for nearly 60 percent of Hollywood's revenue. DVD sales are not only the fastest growing part of the movie business, they're changing the way Hollywood does business.
    He says DVD sales can save a film like "Dark Blue," which pulled in a modest $9 million in theaters. "It actually did more revenues in DVD than it did at the box office," says McGurk, because the DVD market is a man's world.
    Blockbuster films now often sell more than 10 million DVDs in the U.S. alone. And that's at $20 a pop. And with DVD players still in only half of American homes, Hollywood believes those soaring sales will just get hotter still.

    Finding Nemo grossed $320 million [leesmovieinfo.net] from DVD sales in 2003. "Consumers spend more money on the DVD version of almost every movie than they do on that same movie in theaters, including blockbusters such as The Lord of the Rings, Finding Nemo and Pirates of the Caribbean" (USA Today [usatoday.com]). CNN/Money reports [cnn.com] that the movie studios "pocket roughly 80 cents of every dollar on each DVD sold, a take well above the 50 cents for each dollar at the box office" and The Hollywood Reporter [hollywoodreporter.com] says that "studios are earning about 60% more upon initial release from video sales of theatrical feature films than they did during the VHS-only era". So, not only are video sales up overall, DVDs are more profitable for the media companies than VHS or the box office.

    And the future looks rosy as well. PriceWaterhouseCoopers has a sample chapter of their Global Entertainment and Media Outlook 2004-2008 report [pwc.com] online which says:

    We project filmed entertainment spending in the United States, EMEA (Europe, Middle East, and Africa), Asia/Pacific, Latin America, and Canada will rise at a 7.5 percent compound annual rate, reaching $108 billion in 2008 from $75.3 billion in 2003. EMEA will be the fastest-growing region, rising by 10.3 percent compounded annually to $36.9 billion in 2008 compared with $22.6 billion in 2003. The U.S. market will expand at a 6.3 percent rate, from $34.3 billion in 2003 to $46.6 billion in 2008. Spending in Asia/Pacific will increase from $13.3 billion to $17.3 billion in the five-year period, growing at a 5.4 percent compound annual rate. Filmed entertainment in Latin America will total $1.6 billion in 2008, up from $1.3 billion in 2003, representing a 4.6 percent gain compounded annually. Spending in Canada will rise from $3.9 billion in 2003 to $5.6 billion in 2008, 7.7 percent compounded annually.

    This is anything BUT piracy eating into sales. Mr. Lucas, would you like to change your answer?

  • by dealsites (746817) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @08:28AM (#10307091) Homepage
    Hi, I missed this link when submitting the article, but here is an interview with Mark Hammill [cnn.com] via CNN.
    --
    Live deals [dealsites.net]
  • by {tele}machus_*1 (117577) * on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @09:21AM (#10307522) Journal
    I might not like all of the changes (especially Greedo shooting first), but I see GL's point. It's not just that GL is an "artist." He's a professional. He wanted to put his vision on screen, and he couldn't do it exactly the way he envisioned. I can completely understand the desire to go back years later, when he has his independent resources, and re-work the old movies to more perfectly match his original vision. It's his legacy, and he has control over how the movies will be viewed long after he is gone.

    Keep this in mind: J.R.R. Tolkien made minor revisions to the Lord of the Rings several times after the books were first published (and then published in successive editions). And Tolkien didn't have to deal with a movie studio taking a huge chance on something that essentially no one had done before. Professionals (and I speak from experience) have an irrepressible desire to revisit our past work, because we always have a feeling that the demands of time and the client (or the editor or the studio) force us to push out work product that could be tweaked to perfection if only we had a little more time.
  • by antdude (79039) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @10:59AM (#10308430) Homepage Journal

    According to this [thedigitalbits.com] (9/20/04 - 12:30 PM PDT), this [thedigitalbits.com] (9/20/04 - 10:30 PM PDT), and TheForce.Net [theforce.net], there are audio issues in Star Wars [starwars.com] Trilogy DVD set.


    Lucasfilm [lucasfilm.com] denied with this statement, "We are always impressed with how closely fans listen to the many different sound mixes we have made for the Star Wars movies over the years. It is flattering to know that, indeed, the audience is listening. Consequently, each mix comes out differently and any changes that you hear on the all-new Dolby [dolby.com] Digital 5.1 Surround EX tracks on the Star Wars Trilogy DVD set are deliberate creative decisions. We can confirm that there are no technical glitches as reported."

  • by RenHoek (101570) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @11:24AM (#10308693) Homepage
    Another great victory due to piracy!

    * It makes legit DVD's cheaper, otherwise there would be no incentive for movie studio's to offer competative prices.

    * It enabled the public to enjoy Lord of the Rings as soon as it was out, worldwide. Instead of having to wait 6 to 9 months for a European release.

    * And now it saves us legit customers from artificial waiting times..

    All I can say is, huzzah for piracy!
  • What the FUCK. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by CAIMLAS (41445) on Tuesday September 21, 2004 @04:11PM (#10312279) Homepage
    4. Boba Fett has a new voice

    Since Boba Fett is a clone of Jango Fett, and Jango Fett is played by Temura Morrison, doesn't it make sense that he should sound like him, too? That's exactly what George Lucas thought, so Morrison was brought in to revoice the four lines of dialogue (yes, believe it or not there are only four!) Boba spoke in the original trilogy.

    Does anyone else think this is shit? Bobba Fett in the original trilogy, the way I understood it, was the son of Jango Fett - you know, that kid that was with Jango in Episode 2? Seems like saying Bobba Fett was a clone simply discards the purpose of even having the kid in Epside II at all.

    I also seem to recall something in one of the novels, or something like that, about Bobba Fett being Jango's progeny. This would make sense, as progeny is more likely to follow in their father's footsteps than a clone is to follow in the footsteps of the person they were cloned from, no? I'd think a clone would be more interested in seeking their own identity.

    And what's with changing Bobba Fett's voice? Even if he were a clone (I'm not believing it), half of what made Fett such a badass was his -voice-. It was fucking hardcore and made you fear the guy. Now, Jango? Not so much. Not only that, but a clone is going to have different cultural influences than Jango, and thus his accent is going to be different anyway. But I digress.

    In conclusion, Lucas sucks. What a hack.

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