Star Wars Getting Theatrical Re-Release


Recently there have been a number of Star Wars related news items; as not only is J.W. Rinzler’s impressive book, The Making of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, being released in a couple of weeks, but there have been more discussions about the proposed Star Wars Blu-ray releases, and the extras they will contain; but now, possibly one of the most exciting developments that fans have heard for quite some time has broken; bringing the news that the entire franchise is due to receive a wide-scale re-release.

The idea for the re-release came largely from the success of James Cameron’s blockbuster movie Avatar; which has prompted Star Wars creator George Lucas to convert the series into 3D, allowing him to once again play around with his masterpiece on a digital level, and shake just a few more truck loads of cash out of the seemingly endless piggy bank that is Star Wars.

Lucas has hinted at the prospect of converting the films several times before, but apparently wanted to wait until there were enough 3D movie theaters to support a widespread re-release (something that doesn’t even really need questioning nowadays, as just about every other major picture is gaining a 3D conversion), and is hoping that by the time the films hit cinemas, the 3D home market will have picked up enough for him to issue another iconic BoxSet.

And whilst some people may be getting fed up of having to fork out for endless re-issues and updated collections, there’s no doubt that cinemas will be packed to see the films remastered and up on the big screen once again; as not only is George Lucas himself supervising the conversion process, but the re-release will give thousands of fans (who were too young to catch the original theatrical run) a chance to experience Star Wars as it was meant to be seen, for the first time ever; just as the U.K. re-release of Back to the Future (which begins its limited run this week) will do.

But however interested, or cheated, you feel by the prospect of paying to see the Star Wars movies in 3D, they’re still some ways off, and aren’t scheduled for release until sometime in 2012 (beginning with The Phantom Menace); by which time the majority of fans will have already shelled out for the series again, as the Blu-rays are due to be released in the fall of 2011.

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Matt Wheeldon is the Founder, and Editor in Chief of Good Film Guide. He still refers to the cinema as "the pictures", and has what some would describe as a misguided appreciation for Waterworld.