Movie News

Dear Rick McCallum

Published at: Jan. 25, 2000, 4:31 a.m. CST by staff

My dear Mr McCallum, I have read your recent paragraph on why there are no current plans for a DVD release for STAR WARS: THE PHANTOM MENACE, A NEW HOPE, EMPIRE STRIKES BACK and RETURN OF THE JEDI.

"Well there’s no conspiracy at work here,
I assure you. It's really about exploiting
an exciting medium in the best possible
way. George hopes to do something special
with the DVD release but he isn’t available
to work on it right now since we’re in pre-
production on Episode II, with principal
photography scheduled to begin this summer
in Australia. Until George has some time
to concentrate on it, we don't anticipate
releasing any of the Star Wars movies on
DVD in the foreseeable future."

StarWars.Com

Now having read this statement, I completely understand both you and George's desire to wait and release these deluxe super DVDs when George has the time to really put the love and craftsmanship that he puts into everything he has ever done.

However, I am sure that there are many millions of Star Wars fans out there in the world, that would like... Just in the interim... In the time period between now and when Mr Lucas could make these super presentations... If they could own just plain vanilla DVDs of the four existing Star Wars features. You know... Like the Disney DVDs that came out of PINNOCHIO and PETER PAN and such.

Believe me, it would be no skin off the back of the fans to be able to have at home, wonderful DVD editions of the films themselves, and when Lucasfilm finds the time... in say 2004 or 2005 or even 2006.... to make this master 6 film DVD collection, with exhaustive dvd extras with behind the scenes, character concepts, missing scenes, trailers (both foreign and domestic), alternative angles, etc...

You see, fans like us just like to be able to collect in a single format. And over the past two years, many of us have begun to switch to this new DVD format. Getting rid of our VCRs. Coming to hate the slight lack of sharpness that comes with mere video encoding.

While I am sure there is no conspiracy. And I know that you and Mr Lucas have only our best interests in your hearts, we would be sated for the time being with mere widescreen, Digital 5.1, dvd transfers that we may wear out by the time these discs, that I'm sure all fans are salivating for, that Lucas wishes to create come out.

I hope this letter finds you well.

Harry Knowles (DVD and STAR WARS lover)

Readers Talkback

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  • Jan. 25, 2000, 4:40 a.m. CST

    different

    by jamie

    I think it's an admirable chang from Lucasfilm's usual practice. In the last ten years here in the UK there were FOUR different releases of the first trilogy: standard, digitally remastered, 'THX', and finally the 'special' edition. I'd say that saving our sheckles was the last thing on Mr Lucas' mind. He seems to want us all to have at least 12 copies of each film. So, yes, it is a very stange thing.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 4:43 a.m. CST

    Very Well put Harry!

    by Intruder

    5 or even 6 years is a long time to wait for something. I'm sure the fans won't be 2 upset in half a decade when the real DVDs are released by lucas and have to dish out some more mula to buy the new editions with all the extras. I'd pay quite a bit to be able to see StarWars on DvD for 5 years. Then when lucas found the time... he could bring us the MOTHER of all DVDs... ... VHS SUCKS!

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 4:55 a.m. CST

    ok

    by OverboardCharlie

    I don't really care about all the extras etc etc. If i want goodies i have other ways to getem. Give me the movies! period.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 4:59 a.m. CST

    Extras for TPM Might make me Cry

    by The Shrike

    I love extras on DVD. I didn't love the Phantom Menace. BUT I would be FORCED by my film-crazed brain to rent a TPM:SE disc. I would be worried that the extras would include hours and hours of footage of how Lucas slowly raped my childhood. I'd feel like Nicholas Cage in that 8MM preview. What could be so horrible? What could drive a man to such an edge? An hour long documentary on the development of one Jar Jar Binks. Screen tests of Jake Lloyd next to screen tests of that kid from the Sixth Sense. Shivers are going up my spine boys.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:02 a.m. CST

    I agree with both...

    by ricky

    George is right.....Harry's right....George wins! It's his movies, man! And, no, he does not need the money, pepsi gave him the equivalent of Venezuela's yearly oil profits. George is a huge DVD fan and he'll make such masterpieces that will revolutionize the DVD market like ANH did movies in 1977. They'll be so perfect and beautiful, fans will toss their other dvds to the garbage and beg it had taken 10 more years so it could have been so much morrre awesome. Plus, stop whining, watch the damn movies on vhs, they look good enough. Or, you could just go see "The Matrix" or buy some crappy japanese pirate star wars dvd, which I urge you NOT to. Just buy TPM and the trilogy's special edition (yeah, i like it, it kicks ass!) and shut up about it already. Georgie does what he wants with his little movies, I would.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:02 a.m. CST

    Dear IRON GIANT

    by Todd

    Well there was no conspiracy at work to kill you Giant, I assure you. The General told me it was really about exploiting a new exciting military medium in the best possible way. Dean hopes to do something special with your likeness, but he isn

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:13 a.m. CST

    Harry, you read my mind, man!

    by Killeen

    Swear to God, I just asked the same question over at Star Wars.com, in the Ask the Council section, right before I came hear--even used the word interim :) Now if these obtuse bastards would just answer it.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:24 a.m. CST

    You naysayers are perverse pricks.

    by Killeen

    Do you want the movies now, or not? Who cares if Lucas makes more money. More to him. And, yeah, they are his movies, but Lucas isn't necessarily against this idea--the man's so busy he's probably not aware of the demand for no-frills, regular-editions on DVD. Remember how the success of the special editions caught him off-guard? And remember how he released the TPM a little early, as a treat to the fans? He cares about us. Well, I'm assuming he does. And remember his comments about all the marketing, how a "little" independent producer like him needs all the money he can get...?Anyway, you don't try, don't let your voice be heard, you don't fight for your right to party with Star Wars on DVD...before two thousand and fucking-six, then you are definitely in for that long-ass wait.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:25 a.m. CST

    error in Harry's logic

    by Lazarus Long

    Harry you bit off more than you could chew here (no pun intended). Why couldn't you simply have urged for an Episode One DVD. You had to go and beg for the other 3. You stated that we wanted to not have to go back and buy a format we don't use anymore. That logic would apply to the phantom menace. But whether or not Episodes 4,5, and 6 come out on DVD not, you've ALREADY bought the VHS versions. So if those don't come out for a while, you're really not having to regress. Asking for wayyyy too much is going to make anyone important who reads your open letter just disregard the whole thing. In the case of Episode One, your point is right on the money. Obviously they had time to put together this Widescreen Collector's Edition. That didn't take away from George's pressing responsibilities. How long would it have taken to authorize a basic DVD with no extras? No time at all. I don't think there's a conspiracy, just a lot of stupidity. They are thinking so far past the issue at hand they are missing the main point. I hope because of Harry's overlong wish list the main point of this article isn't missed as well...

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:29 a.m. CST

    Lazarus

    by Killeen

    You're forgetting one thing: McCallum isn't an intellectual twit like yourself.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:34 a.m. CST

    Actually 2,5,6 and 1are out on dvd

    by sinople

    There are several bootleg DVD versions of the trilogy and the ep1 floating around. Check hole in the wall DVD shops, comic cons, foreign sites, etc... chances are you'll find copies if you want them bad enough.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:53 a.m. CST

    Bootdregs

    by Killeen

    The bootlegs won't compare to the transfers on the legit vers., but they're useful in adding to the need for getting licensed DVDs to market.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:58 a.m. CST

    I don't own Star Wars anymore

    by nicksc

    2 years ago when I switched to DVD from Laserdisc, I set about replacing my entire collection of LD's with DVD. Sure, at that time, many of my favourite films were not available on the DVD format, but over the last two years with the exception of a few Spielberg films I have replaced all my laser rotted LD's with pristine DVD's. I am glad I sold my LD's. I no longer own a LD player (why should I?), so like many other fans I can no longer watch any of the Star Wars films at home unless they are on VHS and as any DVD owner will tell you, why watch VHS when you have DVD? I am sure thousands of other Star Wars fans are in the same position and whilst I cannot watch Star Wars as and when Iwant it my interest in the films has all but diminished. I was once a big collector of all things Star Wars but without the source material on DVD to inspire me I am no longer making any Star Wars related purchases. Roll on Lord of the Rings and Peter Jacksons commitment to DVD, I hope it knocks Star Wars out of the water. Signed, Previously One Of The Biggest Star Wars Fans Ever.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 6:04 a.m. CST

    I agree with Lucas

    by Anakin Rocks

    Truthfully, Mr. Lucas' reasons for putting off a DVD release make sense to me and I not only agree with them I respect them. I, for one, am frustrated when a DVD looks rushed & is additional "extras." I think the decesion to wait until he can put out a truly wonderful DVD is a good one & I look forward to the DVD even more knowing that it will truly be special. Just my opinion, but I wanted to express it. -John

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 6:15 a.m. CST

    Extras

    by Killeen

    I've read that Lucas is taking into consideration the awesome storage potential of the up-coming blue laser DVD and plans to put a veritable motherload of supplemental shit on there--literally hours of behind the scenes stuff, making-of documentaries and interviews (and hopefully casting sessions). Also, I'm guessing, we're going to see a lot of unused scenes. Probably the whole Anchorhead and ROTJ sandstorm scenes, and hopefully the Wampa stuff from ESB, even though some of it's suppose to look pretty bad. In the case of TPM, I'll bet most scenes are cut back into the movie proper, considering all the weird little arbitrary edits that were made of scenes that would integrate nicely. I wouldn't look for alternate angles, but it's possible.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 6:16 a.m. CST

    Beta edition

    by LOS GORDOS

    DVD can kiss my Ludite ass. I hope they release a Beta edition cause as we all know Beta was always far superior to VHS, with sharper image, better tracking and frame by frame and sleeker, more compact cassettes.... just as Lucas has championed digital projection he has THE POWER to bring back Beta.... and 8track while he's at it. Release the HOWARD THE DUCK soundtrack on 8 track.... I have the Beta tape of the movie and with that soundtrack my pristine collection would finally be complete. But seriously folks.... like Yoda said, "patience is a virtue young Shitkicker.... I sense much fear in you". Lucas and Spielberg don't seem so much like director's anymore as they do administrator's of notions. The 70's have been over for a long long time.... and we're not in Kansas anymore. WHatever happened to the egomaniacal coke snorting, sports car driving, whore mongers who made nothing but straight-up timeless masterpieces that rocked the studio system and redefined film as we know it ?!? Crytsal image clarity or not, these guys are not operating at peak form if you know what I mean. Put that in your spellchecker and scan it. Peace.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 7:45 a.m. CST

    harry hits the nail on the head

    by Germster

    Harry has the right idea here. Its not uncommon practice to release a film with bare bones features and then, at a later date, release it with a million. Armageddon and Rushmore come to mind immedietly. And since George has NO problems releasing the original trilogy on VHS with new, exciting xtras, why not just do it on DVD????

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 9:22 a.m. CST

    DEJA-VU

    by blacksun

    We keep having the same talkback over and over again...I'm surprised we're not talking anymore about wether or not TPM is good enough to want to own on DVD or video. There are a lot of good DVDs out there to last you a lifetime (..well at least till 2006) and even more films on VHS. And if you've seen all american movies, there's 'like' a whole world out there...and not just Hong Kong either.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 9:34 a.m. CST

    What a waste of money!

    by John Maddening

    There's such a need in this country for getting things NOW NOW NOW! The woman at Suncoast looked at me with disgust when she said they would be taking "Phantom Menace" VHS pre-orders on Friday and I said "Ah, I'll just wait for 2006 when they release the DVDs." Keep in mind this is a mediocre "Star Wars" movie, not "A New Hope" and "The Empire Strikes Back". I can wait. I might have a hankering to see the Podrace or the final lightsaber battle, but I'll borrow a VHS copy from someone with less willpower. Lucas is finally doing something smart that makes me think he's not a moneygrubber - rather than having everyone buy a DVD now and again six years later...

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 10:05 a.m. CST

    what crap, release movies on anything

    by RipReaver

    Its a bunch of crap that one cant walk into a store and buy the star wars trilogy, what the hell is the deal with limited release? bad enough you cant buy the movies on dvd, but not even being able to have the videos? lets take the greatest movie trilogy of all time, a trilogy meant to be watched over and over and rewound and enjoyed in your home with its special effects, and lets make it unavailable year after year. bullshit. oh but i can watch the matrix dvd, the most overrated laughable joke in the past few years. reeves doing kung fu poses hahaha. the whole lucasfilm thing to make the fans happy, make the fans happy, yeah, well how about letting us watch the damn movies!! wait six years for behind the scenes crap? who cares, people want the movies. i love star wars, but i dont need to wait six years to see an extra scene that was left out of a movie because it wasnt even good enough for the movie at the time. make the movies available, videos wear out. its ridiculous. but i can watch the matrix dvd. screw the cheesrix.

  • The excuse I accept is the blue laser / high density disc being proposed. Those DVDs will be MUCH better without the current standard compression. Perhaps with all that space on those discs we can have the Special Editions AND THE ORIGINALS. Nice if we had the option as I don't like the SEs. If Lucas edited in several of the legendary outtakes, the movies would still be as cool and possibly cooler for the many fans who have only dreamt of these scenes being incorporated...and having there Star Wars universe expanded. I think we would MUCH rather see original inserts than CG out of place crap. What's essential is a GREAT transfer. After that, you won't need to buy this film again...or at least for the next 15 or more years. The other thing I agree with is, can't Lucas hire people to produce this disc to his specs? How much of his time does it really require of HIM? UNLESS he intends to clean up and fix up things like the new utterly crappy Jabba. His disasterous choice of having Greedo shoot first. ETC. I believe I'm speaking for A LOT of folks. For those of you who disagree with me, could you not reply? I don't want you to waste space.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 12:55 p.m. CST

    Digital Piracy - It's SO DAMN OBVIOUS!!!

    by MythMaker

    The reason Lucas is not releasing SW in DVD has nothing to do with all the reasons speculated on here - or even what he is saying publicly himself. Digital Piracy is the answer. Lucas is obsessed with digital piracy, and how to prevent it. If you read his interviews, even his stuff about distributing films digitally, via satellite, his only concern is piracy. DVD technology was supposed to be copy-proof, because of its complicated encryption. But only a few months ago someone in Europe broke the code, and any person who has the code can copy DVDs at will. Lucas isn't waiting until he gets the time to put the DVDs together, he's waiting for the next change in technology, because as it is now, if he were to put the SW movies out there, it would be the same thing as giving them away - once the floodgates open, there would be no way to stop people from copying the movies endlessly (and in PERFECT FORM). And THAT, my friends, is the reason you won't see SW DVDs anytime soon.

  • ...and save the world a lot of speculation. With Hi-Def DVD, you will own a prestine copy of his $150 million film, so I don't blame him for his concern. They really should figure out a solution so the industry can get the ball rolling on the finer things in life...and huge business.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 3:31 p.m. CST

    Yeah, and DIVX was gonna take over...

    by Sorcerer

    The fact is, we're enough of a consumer culture to want to OWN a DVD, not pay for it over and over. DIVX failed for that reason, and SpectraDisc may do the same thing too. I'm not worried... yet. Oh, and as for the trilogy on DVD- yeah, I'll wait. But put the VHS versions back on the shelves! I know people who don't own 'em yet.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:31 p.m. CST

    The decision is just odd

    by gitzlaff

    Rick McCallum's explanation is just silly. Obviously he didn't spend a lot of time thinking about how to make his story sound believeable. First, Lucas releases the movies to theaters. Then they are re-released to theaters (on multiple occasions between 1977-83). Then they are released on VHS. Then re-released in special letterbox editions. Then re-re-released in Special Edition sets (both as 4:3 and widescreen versions). Then fundamentally the same movies are re-re-re-released to theaters in the 1990s. Then the whole set is re-re-re-re-released on VHS (again, two editions). And I am sure I am forgetting an edition or three somewhere in there... If Lucas was so intent to craft the tiniest detail of his movies, that anything less than a *perfect* release was blasphemy to him, then why the hell did he gleefully release and re-release these movies over and over during the past 23 years? So whatever the *real* reason is for non-release, it obviously has nothing to do with Mr. McCallum's argument. As usual, the *real* reason probably has something to do with $$, not art....

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 5:59 p.m. CST

    SE on VHS

    by Harris

    I'll sell you my widescreen SE Trilogy... If the price is right!!!

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 6:16 p.m. CST

    LUCAS HAS NO EXCUSE. VHS JUST SUCKS ASS.

    by Darth Siskel

    Lucas has no excuse. The excuse that they want to release TPM with alot of extras is pitiful! If that's the case, why are releasing it on VHS? No matter how you look at it, it makes no sense. If piracy is keeping them from releasing it on DVD, than why is every other hit movie released on DVD, including Titanic?! I am holding a major grudge against Lucas if he doesn't release TPM on DVD this year..

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 6:30 p.m. CST

    George, don't listen to them! Trust your feelings...

    by Kubrick

    Remember the Disney DVDs ? They were terrible with no extras, and no good stuff. It was just the same stuff we had on VHS. I say, Lucas wait till 2006 to release the Star Wars films on DVD. Not everybody has a DVD, because they're too expensive to get and the VHS market is still running good. Plus, you can't record programs on DVD, as you can on VHS. Contrary to what Harry Knowles would have you believe, not all of us, have endless pockets full of money to buy every which way version of Star Wars that is released. I still live at home with my parents and don't make very much money at my job at Hollywood Video. I work at the video store, 5 hours every Friday and Saturday and get paid a dollar an hour. That's hardly enough money for me to buy a DVD player. That's why I'm all for the Star Wars DVD to be released in 2006. By that time, I'll have enough money to buy a DVD player and VHS will probably be going the way of the record player. Plus, with the Star Wars DVD, there will be only one version to buy and not countless other versions to buy. Just one to spend my hard-earned money on. And what a great thing it will be for my first DVD to watch on my new DVD player to be the long-awaited Star Wars DVD. It will allow me and other fans of Star Wars to have the opportunity to have the ultimate Star Wars experience with all the extras I could ever want, commentary, deleted scenes, new scenes and all 6 Star Wars movies (both the original & special editions) in anamorphic widescreen presentation.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 6:43 p.m. CST

    An open letter from an enlightened geek

    by Babba-Booey

    Dear Jed-Heads: One breath, you bitch about yet another version of the "middle trilogy" to be released on VHS, and then you bitch about the absense of a single version on DVD. Having been suckered by Lucas with the Laserdisc box set of SW:SE, I'm a bit gunshy about rushing out to buy the first thing this guy will flood out to us. If he's gonna wait to crank out II and III before doing DVDs-so be it. Patience.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 7:04 p.m. CST

    It must suck to be George Lucas...

    by wash

    ...knowing that's he's disappointed a HUGE portion of his fanbase...

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 7:17 p.m. CST

    Why don't you try simply reading a book?

    by Kentucky Colonel

    You get no You get no you get no commercials!!! Oompa-Loompa doobity-doo. Ever bother to read the novelizations? They've got it at, like, Wal-Mart & shit for $7. You get ALL the angles, plenty of extra scenes, and NONE of the shitty "SE" makeovers. Kill your TV!!! Elvis used to shoot his, y'know.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 7:29 p.m. CST

    Why

    by buddy

    The reason many of us DVD enthusiasts want the Star Wars movies on DVD now, is that in many ways, we are afraid that DVD might not be around in 5 or 6 years when they finally do decide to release them on a digital format. We are afraid that it may become obsolete before it's time and end up just like the Beta video players. The way it sounds, Luca$ and McCallum are waiting for better more sophisticated technology, blue laser DVDs, HD-DVD. It would force us to fork out more hard earned money for something that will become obsolete anyway. Damn straight Luca$ wants the best for his royal holy movies. So much, that he's completely overlooking the greatest technological advance in home video (DVD) in favor of something that won't be around for another decade (HD-DVD). So much for the fans.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 8:20 p.m. CST

    Bullshit

    by Andrews

    Lucas is waiting for a bigger installed base before he puts out anything. At the rate DVD is selling, there will probably 50 million DVD players in homes by 2003. Thats 10x profit if he waits three years. Sounds like good business sense to me.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 9:29 p.m. CST

    Hey Shrike...

    by m2298

    Lucas "slowly raped" your childhood? TPM may have been a disappointment, but please get a grip!

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 9:53 p.m. CST

    Grunter, thanks for the melodrama

    by Niiiice

    Did you spend New Year's in a bomb shelter filled with supplies for the Y2K doomsday that never came?

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 11 p.m. CST

    dear iron giant HAHA

    by Fox Box

    That was a funny post. You are a twisted Iron Giant loving freak, but I love it.

  • Jan. 25, 2000, 11:57 p.m. CST

    Well huh.

    by LSHB

    I have to say this is a surprising little piece of work. I wonder if the letter will get any farther than this talkback, but still I have to give Harry credit for coming down on the non-studio side here. He might have done better by making more specific critiques rather than tentatively postulating hypotheticials that would still fit into Lucas/McCallum's pillage-the-fans mentality. Man, how great would that be, to just have the 4 _original_ variants of the films on DVD so that no matter what occurs at any time you can pop one into the play and skip to your favorite GONK scene. Ahh, the memories.

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 12:25 a.m. CST

    And all the whos down in Whoville went boo hoo hoo. . .

    by desslok

    What a bunch of big babies! "Lucas rips us off by releaseing the movies again and again and again and again!" "Lucas screws us by not releasing the movie NOW instead of one boxed set!" Which is it, you whining muthafuckers? One or the other, baby - not both. You are all a bunch of lame asses who will complain and bitch and whine at the drop of a hat! Heaven help you if you were in the early 80's, where you had to WAIT FIVE FUCKING YEARS FOR A CRAPPY PAN AND SCAN VHS TAPE - AND THEN PAY 100 BUCKS FOR THE PRIVLAGE! All you whiners would have killed yourselves in protest. (Hey - wait, that's not a bad idea. Go ahead and kill yourselves - that'll send the message to Lucas loud and clear!)

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 12:29 a.m. CST

    One more thing: DVD sucks!

    by desslok

    Oh - and guess what! All you big babys whining about how lucas is about to 'disappoint a HUGE portion of his fanbase...' BULLSHIT! DVD is an amazingly small portion of the video consumer market- insigifiant next to the 800 pound gorilla that is VHS. Go ahead a boycott - your market share is a drop in the bucket compared to the rest of the grown up world. What's that I hear? The sound of Lucas losing sleep? Nope - just the sound of a minority bitching and whining again. . .

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 12:38 a.m. CST

    It would be all for naught...

    by P3orion

    These editions will be a waste of wait if: 1) No directors commentaries, DON'T WAIT UNTIL IVIN KERSHNER IS GONE, PLEASE!!!!! and a distant second; 2) Jabba needs to look like JABBA in SW, not a bean bag chair. HE LOOKED GREAT in EP1 I'm sure there are other things that could be done, but at least do these. Although adding some spice to the ANH lightsaber fight could be cool!

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 2:21 a.m. CST

    A "plain" DVD wouldn't be any different than the VHS coming out.

    by Frank Rizzo

    I assume Lucas is waiting on the DVD thing because he doesn't have time for the massive extras he has planned and because he doesn't want to do a half-assed release. That is understandable. But why release the VHS version? It would be the same as a plain-jane DVD with no extras, only with worse picture quality. If he is going to release the VHS version, he should also release the DVD....

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 3:50 a.m. CST

    You are all jaded spoiled fuck sticks

    by gary2012

    Since when is VHS bad? Before you start in I must let you know that I own a DVD player, so don't give me that "DVD is so much better" bullshit. Sure it is, but that doesn't turn VHS into instant dog shit. Besides DVD isn't "better". It only looks better. A high resolution picture of Rosie O'donnel isn't any less hideous than a low res one. I'll take a small grainy black and white photo of Natalie Portman over a huge color crisp high res photo of Bea Arthur any day. I don't feel sorry for anybody who can't watch Star Wars because they got rid of their VHS tapes. Kiss my ass. Lucas didn't come over to your house and remove them by force. You CHOSE to not be able to watch Star Wars by having to act like you were too great to use anything but the coolest, most advanced format. Well tough shit. The day I get rid of my VCR is the day that I buy my new blue laser HDVD Recorder and transfer every "low-res" frame of my precious VHS tape collection onto recordable discs. Until then I will never be without a VCR, and it will definitely not be replaced by my DVD player. The only thing that I use my DVD player for is watching purchased (or rented) prerecorded videos. How can anyone say that VHS sucks unless they are willing to miss any of their favorite shows when they are out, because they don't want to "lower" themselves to use a VCR to tape them? Imagine what you are saying! You can RECORD TELEVISION! Thirty years ago people would have been amazed at the prospect of recording their favorite shows or watching their favorite films AT HOME WHEN EVER THEY WANTED! Now you are all so jaded that you belittle something that you adored up until three fucking years ago, and just because "oh the resolution isn't as good", or "The colors are brighter". Four years ago when you watched Star Wars on tape did you watch it in discust because of the "low picture quality"? NO! You just watched it! Some people have to learn the difference between liking DVD, and hating VHS. They don't have to go hand in hand. And to anyone who has ever said anything like "after seeing DVD I could never go back to VHS" fuck off you spoiled thankless jerkwad. After the bomb is dropped you will probably die of thirst, because you'll be too good to drink your own piss to survive. "After drinking water I just couldn't go back to my urin."

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 4:21 a.m. CST

    The ONLY way to fly...

    by Down10

    ...is with FILM. Sure, buy all the DVDs and VHSes and VCDs you want... Nothing can beat just sitting in a darkened theater and watching the film unravel from a film projector. It's always been that way, and Mr. Lucas would be the first one to tell you that. This is why I saw EP1 in the theatres as much as possible-- there is just no good way to get the same cinematic experience at home (unless you're George L.). Heck, now that Toy Story 2 was filmed and projected in Digital Cinema, it's a sure bet that EP2 and 3 will be as well... So transfer to DVD (or the next frickin' format) should be rather quick and painless. Just be patient with what you have (VHS) and look forward. And don't bite the hand that feeds you, either.

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 9:32 a.m. CST

    Star Wars Classic

    by c9751451

    I agree with gsolo - let us have DVD's with the original and the Special Edition versions of the Trilogy - I doubt if this will ever happen but I feel that A new Hope and ROTJ came out significantly worse as Special Editions - I mean check out the unrealistic looking stormtroopers in A New Hope and the ridiculous looking Jabba - ROTJ - what was that "Little Shop of Horrors" creature coming out of the Sarlac Pit? Empire was successful as SE as the effects complimented and improved on the original - in the other 2 they clashed! The end of ROTJ - check out the new ending - the extras dancing with the ewoks are almost devoid of emotion !!! Baaaah!!!! Give us back the cheesy ewok tune ya swines!

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 9:39 a.m. CST

    Peoples' Poet

    by Harris

    You had me until you misspelled urine.

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 3:13 p.m. CST

    just go to Chinatown & find bootlegs for $18!!

    by devil goat

    I have no trouble getting vanilla DVD's of all four Star Wars movies. Lucas is just encouraging people to do bootlegs, so I have no issues with buying them.

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 4:45 p.m. CST

    I feel cheated!

    by Kentucky Colonel

    I just found out that the Star Trek (TOS) DVD's are not in widescreen 5:1 aspect. I feel cheated! Maybe Lucas can give 'em the old "Star Wars" treatment. No, wait, that would totally SUCK! Nevermind!!!

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 5:22 p.m. CST

    Another vain attempt...

    by Dextarin

    But, what you don't realize Harry, is that the release plan you are suggesting will lead to even more people complaining about Lucas releasing multiple versions of the movies in the same format, just to make more money. Besides, no matter how much everybody keeps complaining, it is NOT going magically CREATE some EXTRA time for Lucas to put together an adequate DVD product. Time is not made, it is spent, and Lucas doesn't have the TIME to do it. Whining doesn't make time! It only wastes it! Why hasn't anyone figured it out yet?

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 5:38 p.m. CST

    DVDs , HD-DVDs and Blue Lasers

    by Ktak

    I personally think Lucas should release the Star Wars films on DVD now. It's not so much because I don't want to wait, It's just that I don't think his goal of releasing a single "ultimate" version in 2006 will be possible. Here's why. Several folks have raised the subject of blue laser or HD-DVDs. This technology is real, but it raises some scary compatibility issues. If Lucas is sincere about wanting to release DVDs in 2006 so he can offer the absolute best possible quality, everyone with players using current technology (non-blue laser pickups) may be shit out of luck. Shorter wavelength blue laser pickups can be used in two ways. You can either have a few hours of material at true high definition resolutions (720p or 1080i), or many hours of standard resolution (480p)programming to fit all the extras. If Lucas decides to go with this new technology, he'll have to choose between offering tons of extras, or the ultimate in image quality. Unless some unforseen technological breakthrough occurs, he won't be able to do both in a way that would be practical for the average consumer. The really bad news is that, while blue laser DVD players will almost certainly be backward compatible with current format discs, it's very likely that players using current technology will not be able to read the high-density discs because of the smaller pit size and track pitch necessary to pack all that data onto a 5" disc. I also disagree with the person above who wrote that HD-DVDs aren't worth worrying about because they won't be around for another 10 years. A working prototype HD-DVD player was already demonstrated at the CES in Vegas earlier this month. My gut feeling is that by 2006 HD-DVD players will have been on the market for a couple of years. It will be considered a high-end item at first, but so was DVD up until about a year ago. As with progressive scan players, it will probably boil down to studios' copywrite concerns rather than technology. The bottom line is that if Lucas waits till 2006, he may be able to offer all the extra content he promises, but in absolute terms it still won't be best possible version. So why wait?

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 5:43 p.m. CST

    why the frack?

    by RipReaver

    Ah, speakling of the empire strikes back special edition, why were little lines of dialogue inserted and changed throughout the movie? "Bring my shuttle!" why was that changed? along with a bunch of other lines here in there. the first transport is away they changed the voice, other little things, just curious, wow, this is a real geek posting, oh frack. anyway, i can live if theres no dvd, but to all the people saying to stop whining and watch the vhs, well, ok, but when one goes to the store right now...theres no vhs available. im not whining so much for the dvd's as much as, well, have the fracking movies available at least on some format, i mean cmon, its not right that people, especially new fans, cant get the movies at all. see you all in twenty centons

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 5:44 p.m. CST

    by RipReaver

    "speakling"

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 5:46 p.m. CST

    Amen, Harry.

    by Ally_Kat

    I agree with you on this one. I hate my VCR. I want to punt that piece of crap out the window. But I don't dare. I would still want to buy the uber special DVD released in what... 2005? But come on, George, release a plain o' DVD version now. -Allie

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 5:56 p.m. CST

    WHO REALLY CARES

    by THE BIG LEBOWSKI

    WHAT DOES IT MATTER, THE MOVIES WILL BE JUST THE SAME. EPISODE 4 WILL BE GREAT, EPISODE 5 A LIFE ALTERING EXPERIENCE, EPISODE 6 A LETDOWN, EPISODE 1; WELL I PREFER NOT TO REMEMBER THAT ONE, AND WE'LL JUST HAVE TO WAIT FOR 2 AND 3, BUT WHILE WE'RE AT IT LETS PRAY.

  • Jan. 26, 2000, 6 p.m. CST

    GREED!

    by R.A.Iders

    Isn't it obvious to everyone what is going on here? Am I the only person to have noticed that there is always a 'better quality' version of Star Wars released soon after the last one? Well expect it again. Mr Lucas intends for everyone to buy the video cassette because they cannot wait for the DVD - then when everyone has bought it he will release the DVD! Well, it must be hard for him to manage on a couple of billion dollars I suppose.

  • Jan. 27, 2000, 9:39 a.m. CST

    THE TRUTH

    by gsolo

    All we have to do is wait for Lucas to die and then FOX can restore the film, including all the outtakes we ever dreamed of, and sell it to us in 30 years via download onto our video hard drives for $80. The fact that so many people are bothered by Episode 1 and the SE's is pretty interesting to me. Lucas really fucked up big time and ruined what could have been. TPM is in fact a terrible movie. Some of us like it because it rides on the coattails of the originals. When you see it on video it will all be more apparent to you that it's incredibly weak and strictly for the kiddies...where the originals were fun for the whole family. I really hate admitting this as I swore on my life it was going to be great. But the worst senario came true and our hopes were bashed by a now incompetant, egotistical, and out of touch director. Please...no one remind me how much this made. Titanic made the most $$$ and it's pathetic.

  • Jan. 27, 2000, 9:59 a.m. CST

    only 1.5 million widescreens

    by RipReaver

    well apparently their only releasing 1.5 million widescreen editions of the phantom menace. so now its a frigging battle just to get the fracking movie in a suitable version. so if you did actually like the phantom menace, you have a tiny window of opportunity to buy it and if you dont your once again out of luck on owning a star wars movie. but you can can go into any kmart and buy the most overrated sci-fi movie of the decade this side of the phantom menace, the cheeserix, oh, i mean the matrix. oh and when people say tpm was better then return of the jedi, i guess every scene with the emperor, the greatest space battle in history, and fleets of imperial ships and battle and jabba and all just dont stack up to jar jar binks. at least the cheese ewoks fought and died and got blasted in a battle sequence that made the end of the phantom menace look like a romper room episode.

  • Jan. 27, 2000, 10:40 a.m. CST

    Go here to get Starwars, Empire, & Jedi bootleg DVDs.

    by Darth Siskel

    Here George, I know you want Starwars DVDs as much as us fans, so here's an address you can order them from. Now you don't have to wait either. http://www8.bcity.com/superdvds/

  • Jan. 27, 2000, 2:05 p.m. CST

    Yo Harry I'm with you

    by Bond 007

    Lucas needs to release the star wars trilogy on dvd asap. Star wars fans want to enjoy the films on the best medium possible and that is dvd people. I know lucas is planning to release all 6 films in a super phat deluxe dvd package, however this will not be out until 2006!!! I agree with lucas on the point of full exploiting dvd technology and providing fans with something great. There is also the issue that people don't to pay twice for the same movie. I already have 2 copies of the trilogy, The updated thx and the special addition. fans can deal with it. People are already making pirate dvds. Fans can't wait 6 years luke

  • Jan. 29, 2000, 9:26 p.m. CST

    I can wait.

    by Lobanhaki

    I can sympathize. Lucas wants to control the quality of his work. He's the kind of guy who's embarrassed by low end quality I imagine. I've seen what little glitches in the compression on a DVD can do to the images. Anyways, by the time he gets done with the movies many of us will be watching HDTVs, and watching Star Wars off of HD-DVD blue laser machines.

  • Jan. 31, 2000, 4:05 p.m. CST

    Harry, That was Perfect!!

    by BROH2

    Thanx Harry, That is what I have been trying to say for weeks now. Let us hope Rick does read this. A basic E1 DVD is not too much to ask for.

  • Feb. 27, 2000, 11:21 p.m. CST

    Who told you DYVX was pay-per-view...?

    by Tom Veil

    It was DVD rental, from home, and when you paid as much as the DVD costs to buy, the DYVX encryption would be removed the DVD disc would be yours to own... I'm pretty sure it worked that way. Personally, I liked the idea because I have paid my unfair share of late charges at Blockbuster. Oh well, it's gone now, so whatever...

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