Boshek, found. This is the first I’ve heard that no one knew who’d played the Mos Eisley cantina patron! Not even Pablo! But then again, how much time do most of us spend thinking about Mos Eisley cantina patrons? (Don’t answer that.) I am, however, glad he was found.
Variety reports that Disney began pitching the free TV rights – technically basic cable – on the Star Wars films last week, for all three trilogies. The asking price on is claimed to be “high” – even for the “vintage” titles. Movie rights are worth less and less to networks these days, but Star Wars seems to be an exception.
Spike TV held the Star Wars rights through 2014, paying $65-$70 million for six years and six films. The Indiana Jones films went for about $25M each in 2008.
Cable outlets who have met or are meeting with Disney include Turner, FX Networks, Viacom, NBCUniversal (which owns SyFy, which aired A New Hope when it first launched as the Sci-Fi Channel and USA Network, who had the rights to the original trilogy in the 90s,) A+E Networks and AMC Networks.
Variety cites speculation that the pitches to outside networks may be Disney’s way of seeing “what the market will bear” – aka covering their ass – before settling the rights on one of their own networks. (I’ve been expecting the films will indeed show up on Freeform.)
The Force Awakens will debut on Starz next year as the last film under the channel’s deal with Disney. TFA likely won’t show up on basic cable until 2018, while Episode VIII and IX will go to Netflix first under Disney’s current deal with the streaming service.
George Lucas was on Charlie Rose (via Indiewire) recently, where he was about as outspoken as he’s ever been on Star Wars in the wake of selling Lucasfilm to Disney:
“They wanted to do a retro movie. I don’t like that. Every movie I work very hard to make them completely different, with different planets, with different spaceships, make it new,” he said.
George is gonna George, I guess.
An important read for this week – particularly in reflection of these comments – is Devin Faraci’s defense of George Lucas, and the importance of cultural context. (Something which also applies the “white slavers” comment you’re seeing around so much. Though George has apologized.)
Did Luke Skywalker actually shout “Carrie!” when he sees Leia for the first time after blowing up the Death Star in A New Hope? Per Mark Hamill himself, nope:
TOTAL BS! Actually said "There she…" as in "There she is." Dialogue in that scene was dubbed. In-jokes disallowed! https://t.co/nWLmsLsgpw
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) October 13, 2015
Star Wars mysteries of the ages, solved. Twitter!
Per Empire magazine, producer/director John Landis said at a Q&A tonight that Disney will be (eventually) re-releasing theatrical cuts of the original trilogy. It’s an evergreen rumor that pops up regularly, but this variation has a little bit of oomph behind it – Landis apparently heard about it from George Lucas.
Now, whether it actually pans out this time will be another matter…
The first six Star Wars movies are getting yet another Blu-ray makeover. The limited edition commemorative steelbooks look neat, but it doesn’t seem like they’ll have any new content. The ‘Complete Saga’ collection is also getting a facelift for re-release.
The steelbooks will be available for preorder on August 7 for a November 10 release, and the Complete Saga collection of all six films (so far) will drop on October 13.
The U.S. can now get the Star Wars films in digital formats, and while Han doesn’t shoot first, there is one noticeable change… A new Lucasfilm fanfare replaces the 20th Century Fox one on all the movies save A New Hope. (Which, as we all know, Fox has distribution rights to in perpetuity.) Is this what we can expect on The Force Awakens? Almost certainly.
No, Han does not shoot first on the digital version of A New Hope. The word from Australia, where it’s already Friday and the digital releases are live, is that the Greedo scene is exactly the same as the one on the Blu-ray. And, to be fair, anything else would have been a big shock, given that ‘Han shot first’ would have been spun into a Lucasfilm talking point by now if it had been the case.
Devin Faraci at Badass Digest, with whom today’s report originated, admitted that he was wrong, but does maintain that there is a high definition version of the pre-Special Edition scene in play somewhere… So don’t expect the rumors of restored ‘original’ prints to die down any time soon.
Lucasfilm broke the news we were expecting with a commercial during tonight’s big college basketball game: All six of the existing films will be available “globally” in Digital HD this Friday, April 10.
Vendors being name-dropped in the media include iTunes, Google Play, VUDU, Amazon, Xbox Video, and the Playstation Store.
Yes, the original trilogy will be the most recent Blu-ray editions, because if they ever do release pre-SE versions, they will not play coy about it.