I don't know how he does it, but George Lucas finds a way to consistently piss off Star Wars fans everywhere. For those of you haven't been keeping up with the latest intergalactic controversy, I felt it would be best for me to summarize it for you in three episodes. Afterward, feel free to chime in with your own thoughts on the subject. Okay, here goes:
- The Star Wars Original Trilogy Limited Edition DVDs: Episode IV -- A New Hope: A long, long time ago on a planet that looks just like this one, George Lucas and friends announced plans to reunite fans with original theatrical versions of the first three Star Wars films. After holding out for years, releasing re-tooled pieces of filth and dumping out unsatisfying prequels, this news gave Star Wars geeks everywhere a brand, spanking new hope.
- The Star Wars Original Trilogy Limited Edition DVDs: Episode V -- The Empire Strikes Back: With only three months before the DVDs would the shelves, fans were feeling pretty damn good about the whole thing. While they disagreed with Lucas' choice to hold out on releasing the original theatrical versions for so long, they pushed their hatred aside and welcomed the anticipation. However, a dark cloud was brewing up ahead. See, word got out that these new versions would not come in anamorphic widescreen. Dun. Dun. Dun. In fact, not only were they not being re-mastered, but all three films would come from laserdiscs released in the 90s. That's right, back when the DVD was going through puberty, we had something called the laserdisc. George Lucas was putting out cheap bootleg versions of his own films. The fans were defeated. Their hearts frozen in time.
- The Star Wars Original Trilogy Limited Edition DVDs: Episode VI -- The Dark Side Always Wins: News of the anamorphic abandonment spread wide, and soon fans everywhere were taking a stand. "How dare Lucas screw us again!", they cried. In response to the massive revolt, Lucasfilm defended the move by saying, in so many words, that they worked damn hard restoring the negatives for the DVD releases in 2004, and that they alone represented Lucas' original vision for the trilogy. Screw those old versions -- we're giving them to you in bonus discs, so quit your bitching. In the end, while the fans outnumbered Lucasfilm by billions, the company would not budge. Take it or leave it, the new limited edition DVDs hit the shelves on September 14.