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Are the JSC LD's the TRUE Releases of the Theatrical Version(s)?

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There are clues in the different versions that we can trace back. The first one to land on is the production of the foreign language versions back in 1977. Aside from the changes in audio and the different opening crawl, the Definitive Collection/Faces/2006 bonus discs are identical. So from late 1977 to 1985 when that interpositive was made, no changes were made to the film, except for the opening crawl. And that was restored for the 2006 bonus disc. And the changes to the audio made for the audio for that version were all taken from the mono mix. So the 2006 bonus disc is the closest we have to the general release of the movie.

The JSC has 3 shots that were changed. When the Star Destroyer is shooting at the Falcon as it leaves Tatooine, the exterior composite shot of Luke, Han, Leia et al. arriving on Yavin IV, and the shot of the rebel fighters taking off for the Death Star. So far, only one of those shots in one single 35 mm print has been found. Otherwise those three shots on 35 mm match the 1985 interpositive. That includes the Technicolor prints which we know were made in 1977.

We also have something intriguing in two other sources. We have the bootleg widescreen that Moth3r shared with us and the English 16 mm print that Puggo captured and shared as Puggo Grand. These two prints are unlike any others. They have the original crawl, a completely different end credits, and those same 3 shots found in the JSC. Also, both Moth3r’s bootleg and Puggo Grand are mono, but it isn’t the mono mix, it is a mixdown of the stereo track.

When you put the pieces together, those 3 FX shots must have been changed sometime between the May 25 premier and when the Technicolor prints, foreign language prints, and the general release prints we have had access to were made. Same for the end credits. All the English language prints before the Definitive collection used older interpositives and they all have the same 3 flawed FX shots (if you watch them you can see the flaws and see how the replacements are the same but improved), the 81 crawl, and the revised end credits. Movie studios and distributors think nothing of mixing and matching prints. My guess is that the error in the end credits was caught early and at least one print was made before the FX shot was changed in the same reel. That would explain the print that the English and Japanese home videos were made from, all from prints in Fox’s possession. It has several other notable flaws as well. Then the 3 FX shots were replaced, probably when they did the mono mix. And everything after that is identical until the 97 SE edits (when 2 of those FX shots were replaced again.

So if you want to see the original May 1977 version, check out Moth3r’s bootleg and Puggo Grand. If you want to see the movie as most people did, check out 4K77. JSC is a hybrid of those versions with the added tractor beam line from the mono mix (why only the one change, I do not know). The 2006 bonus disc is the closest to the July 77 print with mono that we have had in an official release.

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I think the Japan Special Collection for Star Wars has the 1985 digital remix not the 77 35mm mix. Jedi is missing the Huttese subtitles for Jabba, i’m sure there are other things people will notice i did not.

You also have the picture shifted up to fit the Japanese subtitles below the letterboxing.

The picture is not as good as the THX remaster but it doesn’t have the problems caused by the early dnr method they used in the 90s to reduce grain.

The colors i would say are not to be relied upon. Telecines were almost never accurate.

fans prized this release for the ability to stop on a frame in full featured CAV mode, it also was the first widescreen transfer. Letterboxed tranfers paired with digital audio. In America we got Pan and Scan releases of Star Wars and Empire with no digital option until much later. Widescreen versions only started to be released in North America in 1989.

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So if I’m understanding it correctly, this is how the 1986 JSC of SW:ANH differs from the May 1977 35MM Theatrical version with the exception of the 1981 title crawl

  • When the MF is being chased after leaving Tatooine, the SFX shot of the Star Destroyer shooting at the MF was changed. The early version had different explosions with different flashes and looks less finished.

  • When the MF arrives on Yavin IV, the composite shot with the matte painting of the temple is recomposited and is not in sync. There’s also an artifact in the image.

  • In the shot of the X wings and Y wings taking off from outside the temple, there’s an extra cloud and the shot is not in sync. There’s also an artifact in the image.

  • The ending credits were completely redone with the spacing both vertically and horizontally altered with a glitch in the composition at the beginning being removed.

  • The 1985 audio mix.

So the pre-1985 home media releases and the GOUT DVD contain the 35MM Stereo mix.

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yotsuya said:

We also have something intriguing in two other sources. We have the bootleg widescreen that Moth3r shared with us and the English 16 mm print that Puggo captured and shared as Puggo Grand. These two prints are unlike any others. They have the original crawl, a completely different end credits, and those same 3 shots found in the JSC. Also, both Moth3r’s bootleg and Puggo Grand are mono, but it isn’t the mono mix, it is a mixdown of the stereo track.

To be precise, Puggo Grande does have the mono mix, but the audio was taken from Jaxxon’s Swedish subtitled 16mm print. Puggo released a capture of the Swedish print as Stjärnornas Krig
http://www.hardbat.com/puggo/Krig.html

originaltrilogy.com Moderator

Where were you in '77?

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 (Edited)

Tantive3+1 said:

crissrudd4554 said:

The JSC still has the 1981 crawl to the first film so no.

Your right. I’ve been meaning to say fault-free releases.

What about the 1995 Faces releases? Were there any issues with those?

Those are the same as the GOUT.

Additionally there were minor audio revisions made to the Definitive Collection mix (and thus carried over to the 1995 releases and the GOUT). Some of these come from the mono mix, some are new changes all together. The additional glass breaking noises during the detention block shootout I’m pretty sure were not present in any previous mix. The only video release I know for sure off hand that has the original unaltered stereo mix was the 1982 VHS release (granted it’s not digital audio).

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Yup that is correct the 93 is itself a new mix and not theatrical either. It is the best mix sonically for home video too bad about that smashing glass sound in the detention block shootout.

I’m surprised there isn’t a fanfix that replaces that with sound effects from the 35mm mix to patch out the awful glass sound for the fan preservations.

The 35mm is on the first issue 1982 and 1983 Laserdiscs, the 1985 laserdisc in the US all analog. Its time compressed on the CLV discs and not on the CAV 1985. I think every VHS in the US after 1985 is the digital 85 mix for Star Wars, before DC and Faces. The reissue of the Star Wars CLV disc on laserdisc in pan in scan in the 1990s Us release was the same master as the original but for some reason the mix was the 85 mix.

The first Japanese release in 1983 is the 35mm mix on Laserdisc in analog and not time compressed. the 1986 and 1991 releases have the 35mm mix in digital. These are pan and scan CLV discs.

One oddity is that the 1982 and 83 pan and scan US release for Star Wars is an entirely different transfer from the 1985 CAV release, even if they all have the same theatrical stereo 35mm mix. And then like i said they reused the 82 version again in 1992. but with the 85 mix.

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To be clear, the only audio difference in home video releases prior to the Definitive Collection/Faces/GOUT was the tractor beam line. That was the sole audio edit. The summary above of the visual differences is accurate except the end credits. The odd end credits are only found on Puggo Grand and Moth3r’s bootleg. The JSC has the standard end end credit as do all the home official home video releases.

Visually, the Definitive Collection and Faces are the general release prints. ANH matches the 81 re-release. TESB and ROTJ GOUT are from the master tape and are identical. ANH is almost identical except that it has the original crawl. Any audio differences in TESB and ROTJ are minor and hard to detect. ANH was a new audio mix incorporating several changes, most from the mono-mix. Not sure where that exploding sound effect came from, but like all the 93 mix changes, it carried over into the SE soundmix.

The JSC does feature the tractor beam line, like every English language home video release in the mid to late 80’s.

And my interest in what soundtrack Puggo Grand had was in what came on the print. It was a mixdown of the stereo track. That the Sweedish print (released as Puggo Kreig I believe) had the mono mix shows that the foreign language releases were done AFTER the mono mix and other summer release changes were made.

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Tantive3+1 said:

Interesting that the Theatrical audio for ANH has never had an official digital format release but the video portion of it has.

True, no official release, but we have some excellent captures of the optical stereo soundtrack off of prints. And pretty much around here, we have access to the 1977 general release in the form of the Silver Screen Edition and 4K77.

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Tantive3+1 said:

Interesting that the Theatrical audio for ANH has never had an official digital format release but the video portion of it has.

It has in fact been released digitally, in Japan, on Laserdisc, as stated above.

If I had some gum, I’d chew a hole into the sun…

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Were the 1995 Faces VHS versions released in Pan & Scan or Squeezed?

schorman13 said:

Tantive3+1 said:

Interesting that the Theatrical audio for ANH has never had an official digital format release but the video portion of it has.

It has in fact been released digitally, in Japan, on Laserdisc, as stated above.

What do you mean?

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