On September 16, at long last, 'Star Wars,' 'The Empire Strikes Back' and 'Return of the Jedi' will finally be released on Blu-ray. (Oh, also, 'The Phantom Menace,' 'Attack of the Clones' and 'Revenge of the Sith' will be available, too, we suppose.) The films will be presented in a high-definition transfer using ... You know what? We all kind of care about the technical aspects, but let's be honest here: We, as lifelong Star Wars fans, want to see the deleted scenes from the Original Trilogy. And, trust us, Lucasfilm knows this too -- releasing a trailer that includes sneak peeks from those very desired deleted scenes.
It's not 100 percent known what scenes will be included yet (and me begging a Lucasfilm rep to see them at a Blu-ray release party a few months ago, even off the record, did not get me very far). But rumors that have been floating around for years, coupled with the official Blu-ray trailer, have given us a fairly good idea of what's in store. So, here's our wish list -- including some incomplete and grainy footage we found on YouTube -- for the deleted scenes we hope to see (and kind of expect to) come September 16.
Luke Had a Life on Tatooine Before C-3P0 and R2-D2 Showed Up
This footage has already been around, actually. In 1998, Lucasfilm released a CD-ROM that took a look back at the Special Editions of the Original Trilogy and previewed the upcoming prequels. Among the nuggets were screen-tests and, yes, many scenes of Luke just kind of being a moisture farmer -- who then happens to notice a little kerfuffle going on above him. Later, we get to know Luke's friend, Biggs. It makes sense why these scenes were cut -- Lucas wanted the action to follow C-3P0 and R2-D2 and not cut between two storylines before finally intersecting. But, it would provide some much needed explanation why Luke is so sad when the nice man with the moustache is shot down during the assault on the Death Star.
The Search for Artoo
This looks like absolute hell, so, thankfully, it was cut from the final film. But it would still be nice to see the full, unedited version.
Han Solo Makes Out With a Woman at the Cantina
How do you think Han Solo reacts to Obi-Wan Kenobi slicing the arm off of a cantina patron? By making out with a woman that I'm sure he just met (at the 2:30 mark). Why this was ever cut, I will never know.
Han Solo and Jabba the Hutt
Yes, this scene was inserted back into the Special Edition of 'Star Wars' featuring a CGI Jabba. But there's something interesting about Han trying to smooth over relations with an extra from 'Braveheart' instead of the fearsome Jabba we all know and love today.
The Empire Strikes Back
An entire subplot about wampas attacking the rebel base was completely cut out of 'The Empire Strikes Back,' mostly because any close-up of the wampa was just a guy in a suit -- and looked very much like a guy in a suit. In the original trailer for 'Empire,' we see Threepio tear off a warning sign (which you can see below) outside of a room where captured wampas have been imprisoned, hoping the Imperial forces will mistakenly enter -- and they do.
Han Solo Makes a Move on Leia in Cloud City
If it weren't for C-3P0, this would have already been a done deal back on the Falcon. In this scene, Han makes a legitimate attempt to seduce Leia -- going as far to flirt with her about wearing "girls clothes" -- and all she wants to do is talk about Luke. But Han Solo is a charming fellow, so, eventually, they do kiss -- which, yes, would have taken quite a bit away from the carbon freeze, "I love you," "I know," dialogue.
Return of the Jedi
Luke's New Lightsaber
When the Blu-rays were announced last year, Lucasfilm released this one as an early treat for fans. In 'The Empire Strikes Back,' Luke loses his lightsaber (and hand) during his duel with Darth Vader. In 'Jedi," Luke has a new green lightsaber, but how did he get it? Well, in this scene that was to be one of the first scenes of 'Jedi,' we see Luke completing the process of constructing his new lightsaber.
From the Blu-ray trailer, we know this one is coming, too. And for 'Star Wars' nerds, this is most exciting. In the lore of 'Star Wars' deleted scenes, The Sandstorm holds our attention as the most mysterious. Taking place immediately after Han Solo is recued from Jabba's palace, this would have been the only use of the full-size Millennium Falcon model in the entire film (a full-size Falcon backdrop is used later during a conversation between Han and Lando). Apparently, the footage was so grainy from the blowing sand, this scene of Han thanking Luke for the rescue attempt had to be scrapped and a voiceover -- as the Falcon and Luke's X-Wing depart Tatooine -- was used instead.
Honestly, little is known about this scene and it came as a surprise when the Blu-ray trailer was released. All that's really known is that it involves Han Solo shooting stormtroopers during the bunker raid on Endor so... yeah, we're sold. (At 0:36 below.)
And just in case you haven't seen the trailer for the Blu-ray box set, here it is.
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