Before it was even confirmed that Star Wars was to be released on Blu-ray, I knew beyond all doubt that the diabolical George Lucas would make even more changes to his classic films. But the extent and the pointlessness of these changes is becoming just too much to bear.
With the 1997 Special Editions, we knew what we were getting, it was fair play with a series of significant changes but by the time of the unnecessarily long-awaited DVD release in 2004, the Special Edition suffix had been dropped, but we still expected the 1997 versions of the films. We were in for a nasty surprise. More changes had been made, a few to bring them in line with the prequels, with the third and final episode just a year away.
But others were correcting faults with the supposedly fault repairing 1997 versions, the most noticeable being another CGI version of Jabba The Hut as he meets with Han Solo. But even these changes were too much for many fans and demands became more vocal for the original versions to released.
The insult came in 2006 when Lucas released the coveted original versions as a second-rate bonus feature. Offering us non-amamorphic low definition 2.0 stereo versions transfered from the Definitive Laserdisc set from the late 1990’s, with Lucas then wondering what the backlash was all about? Saying something along the lines of “He gets criticised for upgrading the films and now he’s being criticised for not restoring them!”
The sheer arrogance of a man who believes that can dictate to his audience as to what they should SEE and what they should what to SEE is just abhorrent to me. The classic Star Wars Trilogy has become a LOST franchise now, completely disrespected by its own producer and continually assaulted in either vain attempts to milk the cash cow, or the misguided belief that it can be made somehow better. The 1977 version was the best, the purest and the version that changed cinema forever.
It wasn’t perfect but no other tampered version has been either! No other film has been subjected to this and in fact, most are RESTORED to there original versions, as this must be.
Today, I’ve learned that Lucas has now begun altering the Prequel Trilogy, replacing the Yoda puppet with a CGI version for the 3D release of Episode I. This would seem to be the thin end of the wedge and there is simply no excuse for this. He had every resource available to him in 1999 to produce a great looking film. But he squandered it. Will Titanic 3D be receiving the same treatment when it comes out this April? Hopefully not.
Also, recently I learned that Lucas was retiring from blockbuster filmmaking and good riddance too! The man is and absolute disgrace to film and his fans.
In the end, there is only ONE simple question. How many films, and certainly historically significant and mainstream movies are not available to the public in the best format possible?
The answer? The Original Star Wars Trilogy.