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9000 Series - Star Wars Custom Special Edition

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Hal9000's Custom Star Wars: A New Hope Special Edition

First and foremost, I must give credit Harmy for making this endeavor plausible for me. His companion pieces of the Despecialied and Respecialized Editions are so alike visually, that it makes it a no-brainer for someone like me to cobble them together with ease. Credit is also due to dark_jedi and TeamBlu for creating the source material for the Respecialized Edition, and Kk650 for color corrected '11 footage.

Having satiated my restlessness with the Star Wars prequels, I wanted to put together a custom 'Special Edition' of the original trilogy to place on my shelf alongside the original, theatrical versions (currently represented by Harmy's Despecialized Editions). I thought about calling them the "So You've Decided To Watch The Special Edition" version, because they wouldn't be intended as one's sole version of the films. Rather, a companion piece to the original versions, as a Special Edition should be.

I do not consider this a "fan edit," as I am merely hybridizing existing official versions of the film, keeping changes I can appreciate and excluding those I feel hinder the film. Of course, this is highly subjective, and everyone's perfect blend would be slightly different. 

I utilized three primary sources for this project: Harmy's Despecialized Edition 2.5, Harmy's Respecialized Edition, and Kk650's Semi-Specialized Edition. I used Harmy's Respecialized Edition, a recreation of the 1997 SE, as my basis, including audio. Given these sources, and their sources in turn, this project is presented as a 720p BluRay-compatible mkv with 5.1 AC3 audio, which happens to be compact enough to fit onto a DL-DVD.

Here follows a list of changes made to the 1997 SE starting point for this project. 

Video

Used DEed to remove added vaporators to address continuity problem caused by the SE:

Used DEed for Leia's hologram in Luke's garage, to reinstate the "cone of light" missing from R2 in the SE.

Used DEed to remove ghostly Luke in a must-have-been-recomped establishing shot of morning at the Lars homestead.

Used Kk650 to include the '04+ recomped version of Luke's speeder being sniped by Tuskens.

Retooled the Mos Eisley entrance. The 1997 SE version is used for the speeder heading toward the town, followed by the 1997 SE speeder driving past a few troopers (removing the CGI 'helicopter' shot, and swoop bike startling a ronto), followed by the DEed version of the entire conversation with the checkpoint trooper. The 1997 SE establishing shots are used as they head toward the cantina, as well as the CGI dewback outside. Bottom line: minimum of distracting CGI during entrance, removal of foreground ronto in front of camera, removal of CGI droid flying past camera, though keeping a few establishing shots and CGI dewback in front of cantina (partially in order to keep the enhanced establishing shot of the cantina itself).

Used DEed to reinstate the Wolfman.

Used DEed to remove CGI stormtrooper and dewback as Threepio takes note of stormtroopers outside the cantina.

Needless to say, Han shoots first thanks to the DEed.

Used DEed to remove floating CGI droid following troopers around as they search the streets.

Used DEed to remove SE Jabba the Hutt scene.

Used DEed to reinstate censored blaster flashes and flames across the chests of shot Imperial officers.

Used DEed to restore a blinking light in the background of the Death Star elevator scene that was static in the 1997 SE+.

Used Kk650 to include the '04+ fixed set extension painting for the cell bay (including newly melty trash grate as Leia fires at it).

Used Kk650 to include new Aurabesh text on the Death Star tractor beam display, and later on as Tarkin is preparing to fire upon Yavin IV.

Used DEed version of the shot where Han rounds a corner to find troopers lying in wait.

The sabers are as seen in Harmy's Respecialized Edition. Most have had the original compositing restored by Harmy, save Luke's while training aboard the Falcon. (Exception: I used Kk650 for a few shots where Vader's saber turns white after dueling Ben.)

Used Kk650 to use the '11 version of a shot of the Falcon firing upon a TIE that fixed a framing error.

Used Kk650 to use the '04+ version of a shot of three Y-wings descending upon the Death Star that fixed a compositing error.

Did a little work to recreate the original version's final shot. The SE+ freezes the frame a bit later, and catches Leia mid-gesture before wiping to credits. The original freezes frame a few frames earlier. But I retained the 1997 version of the end credits themselves.

Audio

I stuck with the 1997 mix for the most part. It features a great deal of sounds that were previously only present in the mono mix, and its the sound mix that feels right to me, having grown up with it. However, here are the audio changes I remember making, aside from changes to ensure audio matches changes made to the video:

Used hairy_hen's audio to remove the 'whizzing' space debris sounds as the Falcon exits hyperspace near the Death Star.

Used hairy_hen's audio for the shootout in the cell bay to remove excessive glass shattering sounds and anachronistic ESB blaster sounds.

I'm giving this project a soft release on Myspleen only, and I'd prefer not to have it listed at FanEdit.org due to the large dependence it has on the prior work of others. It's just something for my own enjoyment that others may appreciate.

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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This is a fan-edit, regardless of whether or not you think so. And either way, it isn't a preservation.

Regardless, you have me intrigued.

“After a time, you may find that having, is not so pleasing a thing after all, as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true.” - Spock

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Fair enough. My point is that I don't claim any creativity was involved.

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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I downloaded this from Myspleen and wanting to put it on a blank dvd I tried to use TSmuxer,but kept getting an error message that would'nt allow me to convert it to the AVCHD format?  I even tried splitting the file's audio and video which I then added to TSmuxer and it accepted it, but after burning it on disc the audio played correctly but the video played with a frame skip effect? 

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Unfortunately I can't help you there. I don't know what goes into making an AVCHD disc, let alone on Mac OS 10.7. I encoded it with the same Compressor preset I used for the 1080p versiona of my prequel edits, save image size and bitrate. Can you put it on a USB drive and hook it up to whatever you're using that way?

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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Well, I was able to get it on disc and watched it last night.  I thought it was great picture quality and I liked your trimming away of alot of the special edition garbage.  Excellent work.

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...oh, just one thing and it's been so long that I've watched the New Hope special edition so maybe I'd forgotten it,but the scene with Luke and Leia about to swing across the chasm, I really hate the "shotgun" sound effect they used when Leia was shooting the blaster! 

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Glad you were able to get it figured out. In case anyone else has the same problem, can you describe how you got it into an AVCHD? 

Yeah, the .44 magnum sound is one of many examples of bits from the mono mix that were reiterated in the '97 SE mix. I'm partial to it and thought it was okay to include because this isn't meant to replace the OOT on one's shelf. 

And I'm glad you enjoyed it overall. Figured it was worth uploading since I was gonna put it together anyway.

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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Are you considering completing the trilogy, or was ANH all you planned on?

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 (Edited)

The time was ripe for ANH thanks to Harmy's Respecialized edition. I'm waiting for more sources. I'm thinking Kk650's ESB would do well as a base, with Adywan's version of the Emperor scene. (Technically this deviates from sticking with official releases. However, it does hybridize the original and '04 versions of the scene. It gets an exception.) And Harmy's ROTJ 2.0 is a must. 

ESB won't vary much from kk650's, and ROTJ will be largely the original version. I may not release them if they end up being very similar to one particular version. But that won't be a question until the sources are released. 

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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Been jumping through this. Why no Biggs scene?

Preferred Saga:
PT: Hal9000
4/5: Adywan
6: NSP
7/8: Hal9000

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For a few reasons. It would involve a sloppy transition to remove mention of Luke's father, with R2 lurching up. It also begs the question why Luke and Biggs didn't recognize each other in the briefing. It's really just about preference, but that's part of what informs mine. 

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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Definitely understandable (though i think you're confusing the deleted extended version where his father is mentioned with the special edition of the scene).

Preferred Saga:
PT: Hal9000
4/5: Adywan
6: NSP
7/8: Hal9000

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The SE version contains the sloppy transition, which Adywan improved in his version.

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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Can this version sync with GOUT audio tracks, or no?

Nobody sang The Bunny Song in years…

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Danfun128 said:

Can this version sync with GOUT audio tracks, or no?

 No; it includes many SE changes, putting it well out of sync with the GOUT.

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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I skimmed through this, and I think this is a pretty decent edit preservation!

I'm having one problem so far. For some reason a few seconds of nothingness is present in the beginning of the file. This doesn't affect audio sync, but it does seem to be problematic for chapter sync. What gives?

Nobody sang The Bunny Song in years…

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Huh, the chapters are all a bit early. Not sure why.

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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So this only has an English audio track, right?

Darth Id on ‘Why “Ben”?’:

And while we’re at it, we need to figure out why they kept calling Mark Hamill’s character “Luke Skywalker,” since it’s my subjective opinion that his name is actually Schnarzle Shnuzzle.  It just doesn’t make sense!

Damn you George Lucas for never explaining why they all keep calling Schnarzle “Luke”!

Damn You!!!

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That's right.

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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Okay, thank you for the answer.

Darth Id on ‘Why “Ben”?’:

And while we’re at it, we need to figure out why they kept calling Mark Hamill’s character “Luke Skywalker,” since it’s my subjective opinion that his name is actually Schnarzle Shnuzzle.  It just doesn’t make sense!

Damn you George Lucas for never explaining why they all keep calling Schnarzle “Luke”!

Damn You!!!

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Is there any place else to download this besides myspleen? I’d love to see it, but can’t.

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Check your PMs.

Well done. I will disengage self-destruct initiative.

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 (Edited)

Don’t suppose it’s possible to PM it to one more person? 😃 (You made my “go-to” version of the prequels btw)

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adobewan said:

Don’t suppose it’s possible to PM it to one more person? 😃 (You made my “go-to” version of the prequels btw)

Heh… Can… can you make that two more people? Pretty please…