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John Landis Says Original ‘Star Wars’ Theatrical Cuts Will Be Re-Released

John Landis Says Original 'Star Wars' Theatrical Cuts Will Be Re-Released

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, George Lucas released a trilogy of classic sci-fi fantasy films that captured the imagination of a generation. But then, the dark side took over, and he couldn’t stop tinkering with them. For anyone with even half a passion for the “Star Wars” franchise, Lucas’ CGI drenched additions to the original trio of films have been controversial if not outright blasphemy. It has been a further thorn in the side of fans that Lucas has long refused to re-issue the original theatrical cuts, only half-heartedly including them in non-anamorphic form in a 2008 box set of the trilogy, sourced from the 1993 LaserDisc release (the quality was far from ideal). While this bit of news comes second-hand, it’s a brief flame of hope that the original movies will once again be seen as they were for the first time on the big screen.

Watch: Compare The Changes Made To The Original ‘Star Wars’ Trilogy In This 1 Hour Video Series

Participating in a Halloween Horror Nights Q&A in Orlando, Florida this weekend, John Landis revealed that Lucas told him that Disney will be re-releasing the theatrical cut of the original “Star Wars” trilogy. That’s about it as far as details go, but it’s likely not going to happen for a while yet as there are still rights issues to sort out.

20th Century Fox still retains the rights to “Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope” in all media, forever, and the theatrical, nontheatrical, and home video rights worldwide for the other five films until 2020. Some kind of deal between Disney and Fox will need to be struck for any kind of home video or box set release to occur including those movies.

So, keep the faith, but don’t get overly excited just yet. Lucas has waited this long to maybe get those original cuts out there, and I don’t expect he’s in any further rush at the moment. But potentially agreeing to dust off those original versions is certainly a step in the right direction. [AV Club]

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