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.
It never takes much to set off rumors about a new release of the pre-Special Edition versions of the original trilogy, but today it’s apparently Comicbook.com‘s turn. They have “two independent reliable sources” who say that Blu-ray versions of the unaltered original trilogy are in the works, and though the timeline of such a release is unsure due to the amount of work required, the plan is to have them out before Episode VII.
Late last month, a picture of Skywalker Sound folks apparently working on Return of the Jedi also fueled the ever-present hopes, while Bleeding Cool tweaked the rumor mill in May.
Although plenty of folks get up in arms over this (on both sides!) I find it hard to deny that there actually is a demand for the unaltered versions of the film, if no other reason than the otherwise unremarkable news of the last Blu-ray release being our #1 most popular and searched-for post of 2013.
And while Disney would need to give up some cash to 20th Century Fox for this to happen (which, again, they did just last year) I’m sure the publicity benefits (and merchandise sales) would more than make up for it.
Sorry, May 4, but May 25th is the real Star Wars day. Another anniversary is upon us, with A New Hope (then just Star Wars, of course) coming out on this date 37 years ago. And 31 years ago, we saw the release of Return of the Jedi. Of course the two bookends of the original trilogy would have birthdays regardless, but it’s especially meaningful this year as we know that production on Episode VII is underway..