Phantom hope

Thirty-four years after Episode IV’s original release the entire “Star Wars” saga is seeing new life on Blu-Ray video format.

To most fans this is wonderful news, but when the die-hard fan hears about the “galaxy far, far away” changing yet again, how is this meant to bring balance to the force?

In 1977, George Lucas released “Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope” and forever changed the landscape of movie making. When this landmark film was released the public turned it into an overnight sensation.

” Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back” and “Episode VI: Return of the Jedi” released in 1980 and 1983 respectively were both equally successful with fans.

In 1997, to celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of the films, George Lucas announced that he would be re-releasing each film to theaters in order with added, or extended scene,s as well as enhanced sound and special effects.

Rabid fans waited anxiously to see their favorite films on the silver screen. Some for the very first time, others for the first time in decades.

To the person that was getting the “Star Wars” experience for the first time it was an experience that they would never soon forget, but to the fan that knew the films word for word they felt betrayed.

Many unnecessary changes had been made. They ranged from Jabba the Hutt making his initial appearance in Episode IV instead of Episode V. A change that maybe more unsettling still is the fact of Greedo shooting first!

Other less offensive modifications range from enhancing graphics and sharpening color accents to making the shots wider so you see more of what’s happening.

The Blu-Ray releases can be purchased as two separate box sets or one massive nine disc collection with bonus features galore.

The fans of the “Star Wars” universe do have a bright future to look forward to because there is a plan to re-release the entire saga once again in 3-D, with “Episode I: The Phantom Menace” being slated for release in early 2012 and “Episode IV: A New Hope” in 2015.

Ray Robinson

Guest Writer

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