Last week, I discussed my desire to see each of the Star Wars films released individually as massive box sets, not unlike some of the classic movies like Casablanca, The Wizard of Oz, or Ben-Hur. This week, I’m continuing that premise with what I’d like to see out of a The Empire Strikes Back release.
- The Empire Strikes Back: The Archival Edition – The original edit of the film upgraded to the best possible HD, with some of the compositing cleaned up (essentially, remove the noticeable matte lines around things such as the TIE Fighters and asteroids, fix transparency issues during the battle on Hoth and such) to match the original intentions of the theatrical cut.
- Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back – This would be the “definitive” special edition of the film, with new special effects, restored scenes, all of the compositing cleaned up, etc. As with the Archival Edition, it would be a completely new digital master, in the highest resolution possible, and with correct color timing. Here is the list of changes I would like to see:
- All of the laser blasts for the star ships and laser guns re-rotoscoped to showcase their original, vibrant colors.
- All of the lightsaber blades, in every shot and in every scene of the movie, re-rotoscoped to remain consistent throughout the film and to match up with all of the others throughout the rest of the saga.
- Reshoot the wampas attacking rebel officers in Echo Base with a better wampa costume and reintegrate that footage into the film, along with the deleted scene of snowtroopers getting mauled by a wampa thanks to C-3PO.
- Expand the battle of Hoth with more footage of the ground troops, possibly introducing new, light ground assault vehicles for both the Rebellion and Empire.
- Further expand Cloud City with CG windows and vistas.
- Rerecord Temuera Morrison’s dialogue as Boba Fett to more closely match the original voice over artist’s tone.
- Remove the scene of Vader’s shuttle landing onboard the Executor, as it disrupts the flow of the action.
- Bring Ian McDiarmid back to record an additional scene of Darth Sidious on Coruscant conferring with some Imperial Dignitaries (or Vader via hologram) in regards to a second Death Star (possibly after Vader’s failure to capture Luke).
- The Empire Strikes Back: The Special Edition – The 1997 theatrical edition of the film, upgraded into the best possible HD.
- Multiple audio commentaries for both the Archival and Ultimate Editions, featuring the filmmakers, the actors, and the special effects crews that created the movie.
- Deleted and/or alternate scenes of the original film, including those from the Special Edition which were upgraded/replaced by the Ultimate Edition.
- Before The Empire Strikes Back – A new documentary looking at the intervening years between Star Wars and its sequel and the levels of anticipation for the next adventure of Luke, Han, and Leia.
- Lawrence Kasdan and Irvin Kershner – Biography featurettes on the screenwriter and director of The Empire Strikes Back.
- Creating Another Episode – A documentary regarding the challenges of creating a sequel to a Hollywood blockbuster in the late 70s/early 80s.
- The Making of The Empire Strikes Back – An Empire of Dreams-style, multi-part comprehensive documentary showing the preproduction, production, and post-production of the original film.
- Updating a Classic – A new documentary covering the work that went into the making of the 1997 Special Editions, as well as other updates to the film.
- Trailers and television promotions, featuring the original theatrical trailer and the Special Edition trailer.
- Stills gallery featuring behind the scenes and promotional images, as well as merchandising images, including a complete gallery of the original Kenner Star Wars line.
- Vintage documentaries, interviews, and news coverage
And that would be about it. I’ll be back next week with a look at what I’d want with a Return of the Jedi Ultimate Edition.
PHOTO SOURCE: Dan