A long, long time away, in the same galaxy as us, Star Wars will finally come to what should be its final resting place – Blu-Ray.
It’s been a long time coming, but George Lucas was never someone to do anything by halves. There was a 16-year gap in between Return of the Jedi and The Phantom Menace, so a long wait is a familiar feeling for fans of Jedis, bounty hunters and the Force.
This move is capitalising on a good medium, one that’s now taken far more seriously than during Toshiba’s almost fatal HD DVD venture. Blu-Ray has truly become the format of the future, and with services like Sky+ HD taking the country by storm, it’s part of the move towards high definition films.
There are those, however, who may be getting slightly frustrated by this point. The saga has been released in three formats so far: VHS, Laserdisc, DVD. Now with Blu-Ray, fans may feel like Lucas, currently worth $3bn, is taking them for a ride.
Even those who want the film on Blu-Ray may find themselves a little shocked, and more than a little disappointed, that the saga will be in its remastered Special Edition format. Using these controversial re-imaginings of the films as the only Blu-Ray option could hurt sales figures.
“Blu-ray is the absolute best way to experience Star Wars at home – in pristine high definition,” said Lucas. “The films have never looked or sounded better.”
This is true, when refering to Blu-Ray, but is the Special Edition really the best way, with re-hashed special effects and CGI? Many fans would argue otherwise, and it seems like their opinions will go unheard as Lucas himself would appear to think that remastering the originals for Blu-Ray is far too much effort, and a lot of remastering work had already been done for the Special Edition versions.
With a deadline of autumn 2011, there’s more than enough time, and it’s not like Lucasfilm are lacking in funds, but sadly that’s the way it will go. How do you feel about this? Personally, having grown up with the second trilogy (and, controversially, never having watched the first one in its entirety), I feel torn. I’d been looking forward to watching the saga in the near future on plain old DVD, but the ever-closer arrival of a Blu-Ray player in my home seems to suggest a waiting period of over a year.
Hopefully, this will be the last version, or there’ll be Fett cos-players out to get Lucas at a convention not so far away…