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» Film-Tech Forum   » Community   » The Afterlife   » When did Star Wars become "Episode IV"? (Page 1)

 
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Author Topic: When did Star Wars become "Episode IV"?
David Stambaugh
Film God

Posts: 4014
From: Eugene, Oregon
Registered: Jan 2002


 - posted 07-05-2002 06:49 PM      Profile for David Stambaugh   Author's Homepage   Email David Stambaugh   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Does anyone know for sure if the original 1977 release of "Star Wars" said "Episode IV: A New Hope" in the opening story crawl? There seems to be conflicting information on this, and Lucas has been known to tweak his movies after their initial release. One source says the episode number was added in 1981. Another source says 1980, and yet another source says 1978. My own memory says the 1977 70mm print(s) shown at the Edwards Big Newport in Newport Beach CA contained the words "Episode IV: A New Hope". But that theater ran SW for a year, and it's very possible they went through more than 1 print. Maybe I'm thinking of a print they acquired near the latter half of its 1-year engagement there (i.e. the 1978 date might be correct if new, slightly different prints were struck to replace worn ones). I did also see "Star Wars" in one of its original 1977 70mm prints (Plitt City Center in Orange CA) but unfortunately I can't recall whether that print said "Ep IV" or not...

Anyone know anything about this?



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Brad Miller
Administrator

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From: Plano, TX (36.2 miles NW of Rockwall)
Registered: May 99


 - posted 07-05-2002 07:31 PM      Profile for Brad Miller   Author's Homepage   Email Brad Miller       Edit/Delete Post 
I know for a fact the original release, which was supposedly around 100 prints, did NOT have that in the opening crawl. I do not know the exact date it was added, but about 5 years ago I personally ran a print that did NOT have that in the opening crawl, so the very first set of prints did not have it. My guess is that later in 1977 or early 1978 it was added.


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Ron Lacheur
Jedi Master Film Handler

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From: British Columbia, Canada
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 - posted 07-05-2002 08:10 PM      Profile for Ron Lacheur   Email Ron Lacheur   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Could be 1978, I thought it could be 1980 as well. When George Lucas saw the $$$ it was making and realized he could complete the trilogy, he changed the title to " A New Hope ".

There are also different cuts of the film. The original release aka " Opening Day Version " has few minors changes then the re-release ( The New Hope Version )

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John Scott
Master Film Handler

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From: Oakdale, MN, USA
Registered: Jul 2000


 - posted 07-05-2002 08:39 PM      Profile for John Scott   Email John Scott   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Ron,

I'm curious what minor changes you are aware of? I was aware that the ANH title went up prior to the release of ESB, but I wasn't aware that Lucas changed anything else with the film.

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Mike Schindler
Phenomenal Film Handler

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From: Oak Park, IL, USA
Registered: Jun 2002


 - posted 07-05-2002 09:47 PM      Profile for Mike Schindler   Email Mike Schindler   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I remember reading about this a long time ago (no pun intended) in some magazine. From what I recall, the Episode IV was added for the first re-release. I don't exactly know what was considered the first re-release, but I'm sure it was no later than 1978. As for the changes that were made, this article listed every single one. I don't remember most of them, but they were fairly insignificant. Some shots were in a slightly different order, some lines had slightly different wording (the latter was also an issue during the 1997 re-release). The only example that I do remember is near the end of the film when everyone is returning to the Falcon. There's a shot of the droids in which 3PO says, "Come along, R2," and there's a shot of the humans in which Han says, "Now's our chance. Go." I don't know which came first when, but these two shots are now in the reverse order of what they were when the film was first released. I doubt this info helped at all. Sorry.

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Adam Martin
I'm not even gonna point out the irony.

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From: Dallas, TX
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 - posted 07-05-2002 10:16 PM      Profile for Adam Martin   Author's Homepage   Email Adam Martin       Edit/Delete Post 
I have also run a print without the ANH crawl. I do not know when the change was made, though.

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Darryl Spicer
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From: Lexington, KY, USA
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 - posted 07-05-2002 11:00 PM      Profile for Darryl Spicer     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Are you saying that the first 100 prints did not have a crawl at all. I remember the first time I saw it was in the summer of 1977. It had a crawl. But not sure about if it said a new hope or not. I would say that the added episode title was done on the re-release. I may be wrong about this but I think the re-release was the first release over seas. We had at one time obtained a poster from a collector during a THX promotion years ago when we did all three star wars films. The poster was a european release poster that had star wars a new hope on it. Here is a piece of history. The Star Wars was the original title of the film before The was dropped. The film also was originaly given a G rating. So Lucas filmed the scene of the cut off arm laying on the floor in the cantina scene and resubmited the film and got the PG rating.


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Paul Linfesty
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From: Bakersfield, CA, USA
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 - posted 07-05-2002 11:40 PM      Profile for Paul Linfesty   Email Paul Linfesty   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
In the United States the EPISODE IV tag first appeared on a 1981 Spring re-release. None of the 70mm prints (3) I saw in 1977 contained had the tag added. It would have made sense to have included it for the summer 1979 re-release while debuting the first trailer for Empire Strikes Back, but that's just MY logic, of course.


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Michael Hunt
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From: Gloucester, Gloucestershire, UK
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 - posted 07-06-2002 08:51 AM      Profile for Michael Hunt   Author's Homepage   Email Michael Hunt   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
First saw it in 1977 in the U.K. and it definately had the Episode IV A New Hope bit at the front...

I can still rememer the comments of 'you what? what happened to the first three bits then?' and the like from the audience...

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Adam Martin
I'm not even gonna point out the irony.

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From: Dallas, TX
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 - posted 07-06-2002 10:15 AM      Profile for Adam Martin   Author's Homepage   Email Adam Martin       Edit/Delete Post 
Oops ... I'm saying that ANH wasn't in the crawl, but there was a crawl.

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Ken Lackner
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From: Atlanta, GA, USA
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 - posted 07-06-2002 11:10 AM      Profile for Ken Lackner   Email Ken Lackner   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
The film also was originaly given a G rating. So Lucas filmed the scene of the cut off arm laying on the floor in the cantina scene and resubmited the film and got the PG rating.

Why would he submit a scene wich would give the film a higher rating?

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Ron Lacheur
Jedi Master Film Handler

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From: British Columbia, Canada
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 - posted 07-06-2002 11:55 AM      Profile for Ron Lacheur   Email Ron Lacheur   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
John,

The IMDB lists a few differences between the 2.

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John Hawkinson
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From: Cambridge, MA, USA
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 - posted 07-06-2002 11:59 AM      Profile for John Hawkinson   Author's Homepage   Email John Hawkinson   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
G can be viewed as (and sometimes is) somewhat of an audience-killer. If you're marketting an action movie, few people are going to believe there's real action if it is rated G. It's probably also hard to attract huge throngs of teenagers.

--jhawk


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Paul Linfesty
Phenomenal Film Handler

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From: Bakersfield, CA, USA
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 - posted 07-06-2002 08:20 PM      Profile for Paul Linfesty   Email Paul Linfesty   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Of course, in the EARLY days of the MPAA rating system, viloence was FAR more lenient. TRUE GRIT originally was released as an 'M'(PG) but lost a "Damn", so it was re-rated G. The film STILL had the scene where someone's fingers were shot off, complete with blood and all.

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Darryl Spicer
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From: Lexington, KY, USA
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 - posted 07-07-2002 01:42 AM      Profile for Darryl Spicer     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
True grit also had the scene where john wayne says fill your hands you son of a bitch. The G rating became the kiss of death because the only movies that did well that were rated g in the mid 70's were Disney films and they were of the adventure type live action films. Anything else just died at the box office.

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