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Fans Buzz About Changes to Original ‘Star Wars'

31 May, 2004 By: Jessica Wolf

Fans of Star Wars, who are already chagrined at the idea that only the newer versions of the original trilogy will be available on DVD, may be looking at even more changes with 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment's Sept. 21 release of the Star Wars Trilogy.

Rumors of even more changes to the films have begun circulating on the Internet. Sites like Aintitcoolnews.com and Thedigitalbits.com are reporting possible changes to the films that include everything from enhanced animation for inserted scenes like the Jabba the Hut/Han Solo interchange, to superimposing faces of the actors who portrayed Emperor Palpetine and Anakin Skywalker in the more recent trilogy into their scenes from the original series, to Han shooting first again. (Many Star Wars fans were upset when the newer version of A New Hope was changed from Han shooting bounty hunter Greedo preemptively to Han shooting in defense after Greedo fired first.)

The rumored changes are becoming more credible, said Bill Hunt of Thedigitalbits.com.

A LucasFilm spokesperson declined to comment on any of the rumors, the strategy or philosophy behind the releases, but said more details of what the DVDs will contain should become available closer to the set's street date.

Steve Sansweet, head of fan relations for LucasFilm, commented on the DVDs during a Q&A session of at the WonderCon convention in San Francisco early in May. The films arriving on DVD would be versions of the films “as George Lucas sees them today,” Sansweet said, according to a Starwars.com report.

The Internet community is certainly buzzing about the possible changes, said Ron Epstein of the Home Theater Forum. “At first, we weren't exactly sure if they were legit or not, but now a lot of pictures have surfaced,” he said.

“We just have to face it that Lucas wants to bring these films up to date to coincide with the current films,” he said. “I'm confident that we're never going to see the original films, at least not on the DVD format.”

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