Sign In

OFFICIAL: Library of Congress had original prints replaced with 1997 SE

Replies
244
Author
Time

Welp, we can't say or do anything about it. I think I've finally come to the conclusion that he's genuinely ashamed of the original versions of Star Wars the way a 7th grader is ashamed of something he put on the internet that nobody liked. I genuinely think we won't see the OUT in any better quality than Dark_Jedi's preservation until the man is dead, and even then he might put something in his will. Keep in mind I've often chastised those who go to these extremes when criticizing Lucas. But to deny the Library of Congress?

This post has been edited.

Author
Time

Wait...what?

 

According to the article, LoC refused to take SE prints but still has the original prints deposited there. Or am I misreading somewhere?

Pants are a social construct.

Author
Time

If I read this correctly Fox took back the print that the Library had by force and LFL requested they store the 1997 edition which they refused to do. What's funny is if they had taken that, they probably wouldn't have a single film version on-file now and instead be forced to keep a digital copy of the 1080p files or even just simply the blu-ray.

This post has been edited.

Author
Time

bkev said:

If I read this correctly Fox took back the print that the Library had by force and LFL requested they store the 1997 edition which they refused to do. What's funny is if they had taken that, they probably wouldn't have a single film version on-file now and instead be forced to keep a digital copy of the 1080p files or even just simply the blu-ray.

But the LoC Librarian writes:

"When the request was made for STAR WARS, Lucasfilm offered us the Special Edition version. The offer was declined as this was obviously not the version that had been selected for the Registry."

"The Library of Congress does hold the original release versions of STAR WARS, THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK and RETURN OF THE JEDI, but these 35mm prints were acquired as copyright deposits in March 1978, October 1980, and June 1983 respectively. All three are classified as archival masters and as such cannot be accessed for viewing/research."

 

Which leads me to believe the LoC does not have the SE and does have the originals, albeit closed to the public.

Pants are a social construct.

Author
Time

That just pisses me off!

"George, we hate you for making more Star Wars movies.  Please make more Star Wars movies."

-The Internet

Author
Time

That's horrifying.

Also, perhaps one of you guys can clarify, it seemed to me that they declined to accept a 97 print, but this thread title says otherwise...So did the NFR take the 97 print or leave it?

Btw early in the article, it says "a professional film restorationists." ;-)

This post has been edited.

“We have a responsibility to safeguard history.” -Gage Blackwood

Author
Time

The sad thing is these kinds of shenanigans don't even surprise me anymore. :(

Where were you in '77?

Author
Time

Ugh, what bullshit.

So, wait, the movie was inducted into the registry in 1989. So what did they induct, nothing? A vhs tape? And Lucas stalled them from '89 to '97, and that whole time they actually had nothing? If a movie can be "inducted" with nothing that long then the registry has no credibility, and it's just an excuse to have a little ceremony every year, might as well be the golden raspberry awards. Or am I reading it wrong?

Author
Time

Good grief!  How can ANYONE read something like this and defend the man?  It's unreal!  It's not terribly surprising.  But, geez, things like this make me think the world of filmmaking would benefit greatly without George Lucas in it.  And considering what a proponent of film preservation he was/claimed to be, that's a sad thing for me to say indeed.

There is no lingerie in space...

C3PX said: Gaffer is like that hot girl in high school that you think you have a chance with even though she is way out of your league because she is sweet and not a stuck up bitch who pretends you don't exist... then one day you spot her making out with some skinny twerp, only on second glance you realize it is the goth girl who always sits in the back of class; at that moment it dawns on you why she is never seen hanging off the arm of any of the jocks... and you realize, damn, she really is unobtainable after all. Not that that is going to stop you from dreaming... Only in this case, Gaffer is actually a guy.

Author
Time

FFS!

All that's left is for Lucas to hold a media conference promoting the BD release, and then he pulls a Steve Jobs-like "one more thing" but instead of good news, he holds up reels of the OCN and prints of the theatrical releases and dumps them into a fire barrel.

The man is not an artist, he's without a doubt an insecure small, petty man.

sig

Author
Time

It was the organizers of that Technicolor film festival who were threatened with having their print confiscated and destroyed. The article says that they were threatened after trying to clear the screening through Fox, but it doesn't make clear whether it was actually Fox who made the subsequent threat, or whether it was Lucasfilm. If it was Fox, I'd assume they were acting under orders from LFL.

I am assuming that the print that the LoC had but returned came from a private collector, not from LFL. Since that print was "returned to the owner," I am pretty sure that means that it was given back to said collector.

I hope this story gets traction, because this is inexcusable. To talk out of one side of your mouth about preserving our film heritage, then to not let your own film be preserved because of your petty, childish attitude toward the original films which made you the billionaire mogul you are. As someone once said, "A wizard should know better..."

Disney won't release Song of the South, but at least they've taken the effort to keep the film properly preserved. And this isn't something like The Alamo, where MGM literally hasn't been able to afford properly restoring the original version due to their financial problems. I am pro-business, pro-copyright, pro-property rights, but this is just beyond the pale.

Even if copyright extension is kept in place, there should be a clause for films, that if you're not properly preserving a work, even if you do not intend to publicly release it in the foreseeable future, you lose it. I'm all for copyright, as long as you take the responsibilities that come with it; film is not a permanent medium like print is, it needs special care. It feels more and more like Lucas' attitude towards the OOT is "let them rot," and I'd call that reckless endangerment of film.

Epic fail, Mr. Lucas. Epic fail.

This post has been edited.

Author
Time

Sigh.  Lucas has done more in my book for showing what a terrible idea the concept of "artist's rights" is than anything else.  If anything, Lucas is a sad but extremely compelling reason to smack an artist's hands away and never let him near anything he's alredy created.  I'm not one to trust huge corporations, but I have a hard time believing anyone could treat these films worse than Lucas himself.  If Fox owned all three of them, we'd certainly have properly preserved versions of these films.

And for those who are confused, this is my take.  The Library of Congress did get copies of the films when they were first released.  But the National Film Registry, the branch of the LOC responsible for archiving and preserving culturally signficant films, has not been able to secure prints, thanks to Lucas's shortsighted idiocy.  Granted, I'm not entirely sure why they don't just put the prints they already have into the vaults, unless they're just in too poor condition, but the article doesn't seem to suggest that.  In fact, at least for Star Wars, they seem to be in surprisingly good condition.

There is no lingerie in space...

C3PX said: Gaffer is like that hot girl in high school that you think you have a chance with even though she is way out of your league because she is sweet and not a stuck up bitch who pretends you don't exist... then one day you spot her making out with some skinny twerp, only on second glance you realize it is the goth girl who always sits in the back of class; at that moment it dawns on you why she is never seen hanging off the arm of any of the jocks... and you realize, damn, she really is unobtainable after all. Not that that is going to stop you from dreaming... Only in this case, Gaffer is actually a guy.

Author
Time

My God, this is so infuriating and so depressing at the same time. I'm still a bit confused by all this. They have the special edition, but they were denied the 1977 version? This needs to be clarified.

Let us not forget this statement.

He states in 1997: "There will only be one. And it won't be what I would call the 'rought cut', it'll be the 'final cut.' The other one will be some sort of interesting artifact that people will look at and say, 'There was an earlier draft of this.'...What ends up being important in my mind is what the DVD version is going to look like, because that's what everybody is going to remember. The other versions will disappear. Even the 35 million tapes of Star Wars out there won't last more than 30 or 40 years. A hundred years from now, the only version of the movie that anyone will remember will be the DVD version [of the Special Edition

 

Author
Time

I think I know what Lucas' favorite record album is now.

Where were you in '77?

Author
Time

I tell you, this is almost a case for use of eminent domain to take the rights to the original versions away from Lucas and give them over to Fox. Judging by the Alien Anthology, they would appreciate the importance of making available the original versions of *their most profitable movies of all time*.

This post has been edited.

Author
Time

Right after I read that article. I went to my tumblr dash and, this was on it.

http://img52.imageshack.us/img52/4861/tumblrlmhq8vodiw1qaox60.jpg

So accurate... Reading that article just makes me want to spout all sorts of vile and, profane things at Lucas. Why man, WHY?! It's really that difficult for the man to let another organization preserve a print?! So at least, when he's no longer alive, there's hope for a high quality release of the real version of the film that I and, many others enjoy. Just, just, I don't understand what the fuck is wrong with the guy!!! No wonder the last 'live-action' Star Wars theatrically released video was called rots Lucas adores rotting Star Wars....


http://img687.imageshack.us/img687/7405/cooly.gif

http://twister111.tumblr.com
Previous Signature preservation link

Author
Time

Unfortunate that things have come to this.  All sides look bad in this.  The National Film Registry is going to get hit hard for not living up to their mandate.  Hopefully this will coerce Lucasfilm to make a statement.

Thanks for the research canofhumdingers.  Let us know more about your trip!

 

Some minor things: (third to last paragraph)

But, the news may be even worse: no only do they not have an original Star Wars print

Add a 't', think you meant ": not only"

they don't have any version

change 'they' to 'National Film Registry'.   People are going to be very confused by the two separate entities under one roof.  When ever you can, use the full name to alleviate confusion.

has said recently that he would like to restore the originals but can't pay for it

 

methinks

GL said this?  got a link.  Add a space for the second.

congressman

congressperson

Here's how to find who you should be writing to:

http://www.contactingthecongress.org/

https://writerep.house.gov/writerep/welcome.shtml

And you might want to explain 'cultural heritage protection law' if you want these letter to be more pointed.

 

*EDIT*

Wonder where this story has been circulating.  Hope more stats surface about the wheres and whens.

 

And would be great if someone at Fox could scan the document which points out what should happen to prints of the films which are found.

 

This post has been edited.

To the top