New stuff made here or existing stuff highlighted here
- Snooker’s load of incredible VFX mockups and alternate scenes
- Dazman’s many visual improvements
- AlaskanSandman’s VFX mockups
- Mrebo’s scene introducing Anakin with at the fight with Sebulba
- EddieDean’s Jar Jar voice editing tool, including all of his lines, with video, and a reference spreadsheet for sources. (Examples here, here, and here)
- FakeYou’s AI voice line creator
- Episode 1 Racer’s extra Watto voice lines
- Jrs81’s removed blood splatter from Maul’s bisection
- Alternate endings! Snooker’s reordered version
Change requests or ideas to investigate mentioned here
- Additional invasion shots and damage to Theed, to allow the invasion of Naboo to be enhanced and better felt, perhaps to serve as a more dramatic opening than negotiation
- Removing the blockade from the opening shots, so it’s just the one ship (since the blockade disappears later when they return)
- The Jedi go straight to Theed (maybe placing the TF waiting room scene on their own shuttle)
- Padmé IS the Death Star Plans could make a good editing focus like this
- Cleaner lines for Jar Jar, carrying the same content without as much of the messy way he speaks. Less “mesa”, more “I’m”
- Or, giving Jar Jar actual AGENCY, using Clone War voices to make him less passive
- Having JarJar be a deliberate guide, by having him start in his AOTC role as a junior representative
- Redubbing Jar Jar entirely, like these examples
- Having the Gungan battle play out before the other three endings
- Cutting the Gungan battle down so it doesn’t need shields, or recontextualising it so they planned to draw the droids into the swamps
- Change the pitch of Padmé’s voice to have it match Natalie Portman’s normal pitch (seen in her other appearances) like this
- Putting Qui-Gon’s instruction for Anakin to hide in the hangar scene not the street so it’s not disconnected.
- Having the bet free both Anakin and Shmi, EddieDean’s no dice version, or PeterPan’s no dice extended version, or a dice version (in progress).
- Changing the lightsaber Obi-Wan grabs to Maul’s red one
- Putting Dooku in TPM, perhaps during the funeral, like Snooker did here
What’s going on here?
This is the first thread in a series of ‘Community Focus Months’, intended to give the originaltrilogy.com community a central resource to collaboratively focus on a single Star Wars movie at roughly the same time, much like how the community rallied around Hal’s Rise of Skywalker Ascendent. This thread does not have a specific output in mind, but it is designed to encourage:
- Collective focus on The Phantom Menace - both the original release and your preferred edits
- Discussion of existing approaches and fixes that you particularly like, or that are particularly useful
- The generation of new ideas, new approaches, and feedback
- Revisiting and highlighting older ideas, perhaps those we can now achieve with modern tools
- The potential matching of ideas to people with technical skills, and the generation of new usable content.
This is my first attempt at such a thread, so some of this content may not be useful, and there may be more that I could add. If you think the approach to the idea of monthly focus threads could be improved, please give feedback over at the Index and Overview thread.
Please try to keep this thread focused specifically on The Phantom Menace. For more information on the wider project and why I’m doing this, and to share your thoughts on editing the franchise as a whole, please also see the Index and Overview thread.
Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace
Released in cinemas 19th May 1999
Written by George Lucas
Directed by George Lucas
I’m trying to present this section from an ‘editor’s perspective’, highlighting the key plot points, structure, character development and interactions, topics of dialogue, scene linkages, references, etc. It’s in as close to original order as possible, with cut scenes placed in roughly the right place. Let me know if there’s anything relevant that I’ve missed.
Part 1: Escaping Naboo
- The opening crawl highlights galactic turmoil and taxation of trade routes, the Trade Federation’s blockade of Naboo, bureaucratic Republic hesitancy to act, and the Supreme Chancellor (Valorum, not mentioned by name) secretly dispatching two Jedi (not mentioned by name), “the guardians of peace and justice in the galaxy”.
- Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon board the Trade Federation capital ship orbiting Naboo as ambassadors, who discuss a disturbance in the force and a little of the current situation. The host droid reports that they’re Jedi to Nute Gunray, who fearfully calls Sidious. Sidious tells them he’ll make their invasion legal, and instructs them to land their forces, destroy the Jedi’s ship, and kill the Jedi. The Jedi survive gas and battle droids, and when stopped from breaking into the bridge by destroyer droids, the Jedi flee using force speed and board separate landing craft to the surface.
- Queen Amidala tensely calls Nute Gunray, who denies knowledge of ambassadors, before nervously calling Palpatine about it. Gunray cuts out communications to the planet, leading Amidala’s council to assume invasion.
- On the surface, as the landing craft deploy troops and tanks, Qui-Gon knocks over a panicking Jar Jar to save him from a tank and earns his loyalty. He saves him from a flying droid and they are joined by Obi-Wan. Jar Jar mentions his home city, which he’s banished from, and the Jedi coerce him into leading them there and they dive underwater.
- They swim to Otoh Gunga, where Jar Jar is poorly received by the Gungans and their Boss Nass, who refuses to get involved in the surface war. Qui-Gon uses a mind trick to secure a “bongo” submarine which will take them through the dangerous ‘planet core’, and they have Jar Jar join them for navigation. On the journey, Jar Jar explains his banishment for clumsiness, and they nearly get eaten by a couple of large fish.
- On the Trade Federation ship, Sidious discusses Republic bureaucracy with Nute Gunray and assures him that Queen Amidala won’t be much trouble.
- The Jedi’s bongo is damaged and loses power, but is repaired and they escape another couple of large fish.
The invasion army travels into Theed city as Queen Amidala watches, then a droid tells Nute Gunray that they have captured the Queen.
- The bongo surfaces in Theed.
- CUT SCENE: The bongo has surfaced at the top of a waterfall, and they narrowly escape falling down it.
- Queen Amidala is sent by Nute Gunray under droid guard toward prison, but is saved by the Jedi. Captain Panaka informs them that communications are down, so they head to the hangar, free some pilots, and Padmé (as handmaiden) influences the decoy Queen to have them travel with the Jedi on Padmé’s ship to Coruscant.
- Their escaping ship is damaged by the blockade, and its shield generator is repaired by R2-D2, but the hyperdrive is damaged. They argue about landing on dangerous Tattooine in Hutt Space.
- Nute Gunray reports the loss of Queen Amidala to Sidious, who offers his apprentice Darth Maul to hunt her down.
- On the ship, R2-D2 is commended, and the decoy Queen asks Padmé (as handmaiden) to clean it. Qui-Gon convinces the Queen that Tattooine is their best option. Jar Jar and Padmé discuss Jar Jar’s weird day.
Part 2: Tattooine
- They land on the outskirts of Tattooine, and don’t send any transmissions, to avoid detection. Padmé, via her decoy, instructs the Jedi to take her with them. They discuss the planet’s moisture farming, remoteness, and indigenous tribes. Qui-Gon takes them to a “smaller dealer”, Watto. There they meet his slave, Anakin, who asks Padmé if she’s an angel before they discuss Anakin’s desire to leave and be a pilot, the planet’s pod racing, and his slavery. Watto rejects Qui-Gon’s attempt to mind trick him into accepting Republic credits, and tells them he has the only replacement hyperdrive, which they don’t question. Anakin and Watto talk (subtitled).
- After radioing back to Obi-Wan and deciding they have no alternative cash, they go wandering and Jar Jar accidentally gets into a confrontation with Sebulba. Anakin reappears and he and Sebulba threaten each other (subtitled). As a storm approaches, (seen from Obi-Wan’s perspective where he’s also told he has an incoming call,) Anakin tells them they should stay at his rather than head back to the ship, where they meet his mother Shmi. Anakin shows Padmé the droid he’s building, (naked) C-3PO, which Padmé is impressed with, before explaining that he’s building a pod racer. C-3PO meets R2-D2.
- On the ship, (following from the earlier scene,) the Naboo governor entreats the decoy Queen to contact him (“the death toll is catastrophic”, but this is not verified on-screen), but Obi-Wan cautions them to send no reply.
- On Coruscant, Sidious sends Maul to Tattooine. (“At last we will reveal ourselves to the Jedi. At last we will have revenge.”)
- At Anakin’s home, the group discuss slavery, surviving beyond the Republic, pod racing and its gambling, Jedi reflexes, Qui-Gon being a Jedi, Anakin wanting to be a Jedi who frees the slaves, Anakin’s mechanical skills, and their mission. Anakin offers the racing/gambling solution, which they all accept in spite of Shmi’s initial objections. As they leave, Padmé (as handmaiden) objects but is overruled, and they head to Watto’s where they make the fairly complex deal. Anakin and Watto talk (subtitled).
- By radio between the ship and near Anakin’s home, Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan discuss the plan. Qui-Gon and Shmi discuss Anakin’s goodness and force sensitivity, and that there was no father. Anakin’s kid friends come and talk about his pod racer, before Anakin tests it to confirm it’s working.
- At night, Qui-Gon and Anakin discuss the stars (he wants to see them all), as Qui-Gon “checks his blood for infections”, but really has Obi-Wan conduct a midichlorian count, which is off the chart.
- Maul arrives at the planet and sends out probe droids.
- CUT SCENE: During a Tattooine sunrise, Anakin’s friend Kittster says hello, Padmé tells Anakin that he needs to leave soon, and the droids are polishing the pod racer.
- As Tattooine prepares for the race, in the pits Qui-Gon and Watto discuss Anakin and Sebulba’s competence, and make an addition to their complex deal which would free Anakin, which Qui-Gon uses the force to influence. As Anakin arrives, Watto is mean to him (subtitled), and Padmé has further doubts upon hearing that Anakin’s never won a race.
- Probe droids continue to search.
- As the racers line up, the two-headed announcer introduces the racers - a diverse group - and the crowd cheer. The flags parade as Shmi tells Anakin to be safe, and Sebulba sabotages his racer before they share insults (subtitled). Qui-Gon gives Anakin some light force-guidance, before Jabba opens the races (subtitled), and the racers power up.
- CUT SCENE: An extended version of the racer introductions, and an extended “start your engines” sequence.
- As a disapproving Padmé and the other main characters observe, the announcers cover the race and the racers start their engines. Jabba spits a frog into a gong to start the race, and Anakin and another racer have false starts, before Anakin recovers. Sebulba takes the immediate lead but it’s clear that Anakin and his racer are very fast and he starts to overtake others. Various racers crash, Tuskens snipe some of them, and Sebulba sabotages some. Anakin takes some damage and repairs it on the fly, overtaking many others until it’s just him and Sebulba. They clash a few times, and Sebulba’s sabotage causes a fire on Anakin’s pod which he repairs on the fly. The two racers get linked together until the separation causes Sebulba to crash, and Anakin to win, to great cheers from the crowd and relief from his friends.
- CUT SCENE: Sebulba wipes a racer out using flamethrowers (like in the videogame!) Repair droids recover some broken pods, and Anakin dodges them. Additional racing shots.
- In the pits, Anakin is congratulated by Padmé and Shmi, and in the stands, Qui-Gon forces Watto to honour his deal via the threat of the Hutts. Qui-Gon delivers the parts to Obi-Wan at the ship and returns to the city.
- CUT SCENE: Somewhere around this time, on the streets, Anakin gets in a fight with (child) Greedo, but Qui-Gon separates them.
- At Anakin’s home, Shmi is pleased with his winnings and that Anakin is freed and will become a Jedi. They’re all sad that Shmi can’t come with him, and C-3PO is left behind and they discuss the droid’s incompleteness. Shmi and Anakin share a sad goodbye, and Anakin hopes he’ll see her again and promises to return to free her.
- A probe droid reports back to Maul and he mounts his speeder.
- CUT SCENE: Anakin says goodbye to Jira (the woman who earlier said “there’s a storm coming”), gives her some of his winnings and is told he’s the “kindest boy in the Galaxy”, then Qui-Gon cuts down a probe droid, which is why in the next scene they’re…
- Running back to the ship, Maul attacks Qui-Gon (via nearly running over Anakin), who boards the ship, and Obi-Wan flies the ship over them to allow his escape. Recovering, Anakin and Obi-Wan meet and shake hands, and the ship leaves orbit.
- On Naboo, Nute Gunray threatens Naboo’s governor. A battle droid tells him they’re searching the swamps for “underwater villages”.
- Padmé (as handmaiden) watches the governor’s plea again, and they discuss the coldness of space and “the Queen’s” concern for her people, and Shmi. Anakin gives Padmé a wooden necklace, and they say they care for each other.
Part 3: Coruscant
- Their ship arrives at Coruscant (“the entire planet is one big city”) and their delegation are received by Palpatine, who has been concerned for Padmé, and Valorum, who has called for a Senate session. Palpatine is certain the Senate will help.
- In the Queen’s rooms, Palpatine bemoans bureaucracy, the slow courts and Valorum’s corruption, suggesting the vote of no confidence.
- In the Jedi temple, the Council doubt the return of the Sith. Qui-Gon tells them about Anakin, “a vergence in the force”, his high midichlorian count, him being possibly conceived by midichlorians, the prophecy of the “one who will bring balance to the force”, and requests his Jedi training (“finding him was the will of the force”). They reluctantly agree to test him.
- Anakin visits Padmé (thinking she’s still a handmaiden) but Padmé (as Queen) says she’ll pass on his sentiments.
- In the Senate, Palpatine summarises the political plot so far. Queen Amidala entreats the Senate to help, but the Trade Federation convince Valorum to defer. Frustrated, she is convinced by Palpatine to call for a vote of no confidence, which passes.
- CUT SCENE: In the Senate, Bail Organa (played by Adrian Dunbar, NOT Jimmy Smits, though he isn’t referred to by name) backs Padmé’s vote on behalf of Alderaan.
- In the Jedi temple near sunset, Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon discuss Qui-Gon’s defiance of the Jedi code, as Anakin passes tests in the council chambers. He’s cold, and Yoda sees that he’s afraid.
- Jar Jar comforts a disillusioned Padmé in her chambers, and they discuss the Gungan army, before Palpatine arrives as a candidate for Supreme Chancellor, optimistic he can help. Padmé will return to Naboo, in spite of Palpatine’s objections.
- In the Jedi temple at night, the council reject training Anakin (“clouded his future is”), so Qui-Gon wants to promote Obi-Wan and take on Anakin as his own apprentice, both of which are rejected. They all discuss the political situation, and send the two Jedi with Padmé to Naboo to unravel the mystery of the Sith, because they believe Maul is targeting her.
- Approaching their ship, Obi-Wan expresses doubts to Qui-Gon about Anakin, who promises he won’t be a problem, but who Qui-Gon asks to observe him mindfully. They discuss the mechanics of midichlorians. They reconnect with Padmé and fly to Naboo.
Part 4: Return to Naboo
- On Naboo, Nute Gunray tells Palpatine that they believe their droid army has secured control of the planet. Palpatine tells them he’ll keep the Senate from acting, and tells them he’s sending Maul, which they privately show concern about.
- On the ship arriving near Naboo, on the bridge Anakin picks up some piloting knowledge quickly. Padmé wants to take back the planet but has no army and the Jedi can only protect her. She tells Jar Jar she’ll need his help. Back on the bridge Obi-Wan (without Anakin) notes that the Trade Federation ship is a droid control ship (which they didn’t mention earlier when they boarded it).
- Landing in a clearing, Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon discuss the fact that Jar Jar has left for the Gungan city, and Obi-Wan apologises for doubting Qui-Gon. They reconcile. Emerging from the water he dove into earlier, Jar Jar tells the decoy Queen that the Gungan city is deserted, suspecting a fight, but then assumes they’ve gone to a sacred place. The decoy Queen’s party arrive at the Gungan clearing, and after some tension, Padmé reveals herself as the true Queen, and respectfully convinces Boss Nass to support their fight, to cheers.
- In Theed, Nute Gunray tells Sidious they’ve found Padmé’s ship near the swamps. He’s surprised, but tells Maul to wait.
- In Naboo’s forests, after a Gungan scout spots incoming Naboo guards, Boss Nass promotes Jar Jar to general, to his concern. Padmé is told that their citizens are in camps, and that police and guards have formed an underground resistance, but that the opposing force is large. Padmé proposes an infiltration, using the Gungans as a diversion to draw the droid army from the cities. To protect them, she plans to have pilots knock out the droid control ship (which is now a single ship, rather than the blockade of many such ships we saw earlier), but Qui-Gon says their fighters’ weapons might not penetrate its shields. Obi-Wan thinks enemy reinforcements are a risk, so Padmé highlights the importance of capturing Nute Gunray.
- In the palace, Nute Gunray tells Sidious that an army is massing near the swamps. Sidious tells him to wipe them out.
- Emerging from the fog into Naboo’s plains, the Gungan army marches and deploys energy shields. Over the hill, the droid army approaches, its tanks opening fire on the shields.
- On the streets of Theed, Qui-Gon tells Anakin to find a safe place to hide when they get inside. A small droid force is destroyed, letting Padmé’s party slip into the palace. Observing the attack, Nute Gunray is suprised that it happened so close rather than in the plains.
- In the hangar, the Jedi overwhelm the droids and pilots get into their ships. R2-D2 and Anakin get into one. The ships go to orbit and start attacking the Trade Federation capital ship.
- On Naboo’s plains, the droids deploy, and from a command sent from their control ship, they activate. The droids pass through the Gungans’ shield, and combat begins, including Gungan energy shields, energy grenades, and energy catapaults.
- In the hangar, Qui-Gon tells Anakin to “stay in that cockpit”. Heading to the throne room to capture Nute Gunray, Padmé is blocked by Maul, and the Jedi step forward. Destroyer droids appear and fire on the party, so Anakin turns on his ship to destroy them, but accidentally engages autopilot and it takes him to join the battle above. The Jedi fight Maul as Padmé and her party take the long route. The lightsaber duel moves into the nearby power core. Padmé’s team fight through the palace, but are worried they don’t have much time.
- On the plains, more combat. In space, Naboo pilots are shot down as the deflector shield’s too strong. Anakin disables autopilot and takes control, rejecting a (HUD) message (intended to be from R2-D2) to return to the planet. Padmé’s team use ascension guns to climb floors.
- The duel continues acrobatically in the power core, but Obi-Wan gets delayed and some closing force shields separate him from Qui-Gon and Maul. They all pause.
- The Gungans’ shields fail, and they begin to flee, pursued by droids and tanks, and are surrounded by droids. Padmé’s party are surrounded by droids and yield. In space, a droid fighter shot sends Anakin spinning into the control ship’s hangar, disabling it. Droids approach.
- As the force shields drop, Qui-Gon and Maul move into a smaller chamber with a pit, and Obi-Wan runs (without using force speed) up to the final closed shield. He helplessly watches the duel, and Maul mortally wounds Qui-Gon. “Nooooo!”
- On the plains, the Gungans have been rounded up by the droids. In the palace, Padmé is taken to Nute Gunray who threatens her. A decoy Queen arrives and shoots at the droids, making Nute think Padmé is herself a decoy. Padmé uses the distraction to get secret guns to her team, and they turn the tables, capturing Nute Gunray.
- The final force shield drops, and Obi-Wan fights Maul but falls partway down the pit, his lightsaber kicked down after him.
- On the control ship, Anakin fixes his fighter, shooting some incoming droids and accidentally destroying the ship’s power core. Neimoidians comment on this. Anakin flies out to the other pilots’ surprise as the control ship explodes.
- On the plains, the droids collapse, freeing the Gungans.
- CUT SCENE: Somewhere around this time, in the palace, Padmé hears about victory on the battlefield, and tells Nute Gunray that he’ll answer to the Senate.
- CUT SCENE: Somewhere around this time, in the hangar, Anakin dismounts his fighter, to surprise from the other pilots.
- In the pit room, Obi-Wan pauses, leaps from the pit, and uses Qui-Gon’s lightsaber to bisect Maul, sending him tumbling into the pit, believing him dead. A dying Qui-Gon affirms that Anakin is the chosen one who’ll bring balance, entreating Obi-Wan to train him.
- As the new Supreme Chancellor Palpatine‘s shuttle lands, Padmé sends Nute Gunray away to answer to the Senate. Palpatine acknowledges Obi-Wan’s bravery, Anakin’s potential, and Padmé’s boldness. He promises peace and prosperity for the Republic.
- In a private room as the sun goes down on Naboo, a visiting Yoda makes Obi-Wan a knight, and reluctantly accepts Anakin as his padawan. They discuss the chosen one and Qui-Gon’s defiance.
- In a Naboo outbuilding at night, Qui-Gon’s funeral is conducted, and the main cast and additional Jedi watch. Obi-Wan tells Anakin he can be his Padawan, and Mace and Yoda agree that Maul was a Sith, but don’t know whether he was master or apprentice, since there are always only two.
- At daytime, the Gungans parade through Naboo’s streets to cheers as the royal guard fly overhead. Received by Padmé, Boss Nass is given a glowing ball of peace, to cheers, and Padmé and Anakin smile at each other.
Commonly Mentioned Issues and Opinions
These are subjective, and not necessarily the opinion of the OP, but are collected here as a list for convenience. Please feel free to add to this list.
- Jar Jar Binks. Lots of goofy antics, an annoying voice and manner of speech, little relevance to the plot (especially in the middle).
- Gungans. Imperfect CG, annoying voices, and Boss Nass in particular has quite cartoonish mannerisms. Low relevance to the plot, and unwelcome final parade scene.
- Anakin. The future Darth Vader is portrayed here as a child, he makes a lot of ‘whoop’s and other kid noises, he saves the day partly by accident.
- Dialogue. Ric Ollie, Bravo 5, and Obi-Wan all state the obvious a little too much, lines by many characters are badly delivered or raise unwelcome questions.
- Characterisation. Many characters feel underdeveloped, and the Anakin/Padmé relationship feels weird and falls flat. It doesn’t feel like the film has a main character.
- Plot. Trade disputes, senate bureaucracy, and focus on politics are boring. Some unnecessary detours, like a fish getting eaten by a bigger fish twice. Some illogical steps, like trusting only Watto has a hyperdrive, and travelling by water through the ‘planet’s core’ and ending up on top of a waterfall.
- Villains. Trade Federation and Watto both possibly racist caricatures and underwhelming. Nute Gunray has little agency. Faceless battle droids are easily dispatched, and their voices are annoying.
Aesthetic and tone. Broad disconnect between this and the OT, some elements seen as too CG and not ‘lived in’, underwater city doesn’t feel very Star Wars, Gungan battle is visually dull, two-headed podracer announcer feels silly.
- World-shrinking. Especially having Anakin build C-3PO, and Jabba appearing during the pod race.
- De-mistifying the force, Jedi, and Sith. Midichlorians, the chosen one prophecy, the rule of two.
- The final act. It follows four separate settings at the same time, some of which remove the jeopardy of each other, like Padmé gaining the upper hand taking away from Anakin’s victory when he destroys the droid ship.
- Opening crawl. A lot of different approaches here, many switching the political emphasis for more hints at the Sith menace.
- Aesthetic. A lot of colour grades, LUTs, film grain effects and so on have been applied, to achieve a more consistent look with the OT. (Please feel free to share your favourite comparisons!) Trims to acrobatics in lightsaber duels.
- Trims to dialogue. Trims to Jar Jar, Gungans, Neimoidians, droids, Anakin, characters stating the obvious, etc, all make those characters more palatable. Some editors have made the droids silent (they’re networked), and some have gone as far as re-dubbing Jar Jar.
- Removal of some sound effects. Like the frog that Jar Jar sends flying towards Sebulba.
- Character improvements. Trims to Jar Jar’s antics throughout, and Anakin being on autopilot. New subtitles for some characters, especially those in Watto’s shop. Making Obi-Wan take on Anakin without Qui-Gon’s request.
- Removal of scenes. The bongo escape is often skipped, as is the sequence in Otoh Gunga. Scenes of political discussion are often skipped as they sometimes cover the same content as other scenes. Midichlorian mentions are often cut entirely.
- World-shrinking. C-3PO is often either cut entirely, and some editors have at least removed Anakin building him, or his meeting with R2-D2. Jabba is often cut.
- Streamlining of plot. Especially the political storyline, and the complex bet made by Qui-Gon and Watto.
- Re-structuring of the ending. via a lot of different approaches, especially to have Anakin save the day, or to end on the funeral rather than the celebration.
Notable Edits and Unique Approaches
The main purpose of this section is to highlight the unique approaches taken by some edits, and unique elements within them, which you may wish to explore further. As one guy I can’t review every indexed edit, so I’ve tried to just highlight popular (on IFDB) and recent ones on these forums. I personally haven’t reviewed any three-in-one edits. Please forgive any unintentional omissions - and please suggest any other edits and unique approaches you think are worth discussing.
Edits after the in-progress ones are ordered by date of last update on IFDB or these forums at time of posting. Descriptions are based on goals highlighted in the editor’s IFDB listing.
- DAZMAN’S IMPROVED EDITION (2022): A new edit using kk650’s color correction, and new CG-improved shots of planets, lightsabers, digital displays and more, heavily cutting the politics and minimising the Sidious/Palpatine connection, Anakin being a slave, and world-shrinking.
- SECIORS’ RETURN OF THE SITH: REVISITED (2022): Seeks to streamline the story and make it a better introduction to the Star Wars universe, in particular the Jedi and the force. Many uniquely cut scenes. The Trade Federation are now “The Federation”, a predecessor to the Separatist movement, Sidious does not appear, and only Anakin is followed through the pod race.
- EYEPAINTER’S EDIT (2021): A heavily trimmed edit with a far more muted natural colour scheme.
- OCTOROX’S FASTER, MORE INTENSE (2021): Seeks to combine many popular changes into a more streamlined experience, especially the opening act.
- EBUMMS’ EDIT (2021): A conservative edit that seeks to preserve almost everything, other than very smooth extensive trims to Jar Jar
- Q2’S FALL OF THE JEDI (2021): A popular and long-maintained edit seeking to streamline the film seeking alignment with the OT. C-3PO and R2-D2 are minimised, and Anakin doesn’t go to space in the final battle.
- HAL9000’S CLOAK OF DECEPTION (2021): Another popular and long-maintained middle ground edit, built on many edits that came before, using the OT as its “template” and minimising tangents. New implied backstory for C-3PO using dialogue from the Clone Wars.
- L8WRTR’S SHADOW OF THE SITH (2021): Another popular and long-maintained edit “ruthlessly” improving the film, aligning with the OT but also focusing on best setting up the PT story. Removes ‘Darth’ as a title, and makes Anakin the hero of the final act.
- NUMERALJOKER’S EDIT (2021): Seeks to release the longest possible version of the movies, including deleted scenes, all upscaled to 4K.
- TM2YC’s REBORN (2020): Seeks to improve characters and plot by taking every opportunity to replace Gungan and other dialogue with alternate dubs and subtitles.
- ANDREAS/ANJOHAN’S THE ANCIENT LORE (2019): A “remake” making some radical changes to structure and dialogue, with some content from other movies and fan films and new CG effects. Count Dooku appears in this movie, and fan content for Darth Maul is added.
- YADS’ LONE GUNGAN EDITION (2012): A radical edit that replaces Jar Jar and Neimoidian dialogue with alternate dubs and subtitles, and heavily changes the invasion sequence using scenes from elsewhere in this movie and many other non-SW movie sources.
- THE PHANTOM EDITOR’S THE PHANTOM EDIT (2000): The original that started it all. Others have taken it further, but this edit has an important place in fanedit history.
Sources and Versions
- Official 2000 VHS
- Official 2001 DVD: Added some of the extra racer introductions and additional race footage, added an air taxi sequence on Coruscant, removed a shot of Watto screaming “Sebulba!”
- Official 2011 Blu-Ray: Slightly expanded the frame, redid the force speed effect, replaced a shot of Nute Gunray watching a screen of the Jedi’s escape with a shot of just the screen, replaced puppet Yoda with a CG version, fixed some clipping on the two-headed announcer, replaced the “vote now!” chorus with general uproar
- Official 2019 Disney+ 4K Restoration: Upscaled the 2011 Blu-Ray’s digital master files, removed DNR evidence from some shots
- BOBSON DUGNUTT’S EXPANDED EDITION (2021): Seeks to extend the movie to its longest possible length through the use of new, alternate, and extended scenes, all with finished effects and upscaled where necessary. May provide a useful source of additional scenes and shots, including good quality deleted scenes.
- KK650’S REGRADED REGRAINED EDITION (2018): Seeks to present a more OT/natural grade with film grain version of the 2011 Blu-Ray. Many additional 4K, theatrical, VHS, laserdisk, and other regrades on the Preservation subforum.
- +++ I’m quite unfamiliar with preservation so please suggest any fan restorations, upscales, regrades, and more!
Other Resources and Options
- Opening text and subtitled characters can always be rewritten
- Digital displays and wordless communication can be reimagined, for example Maul’s probe droids in this movie
- C-3PO in particular has a million lines of dialogue from a huge array of sources that could be used as alternatives.
- +++ Many other forum users and youtubers have produced all-new or improved shots using modern VFX tools
Context and Considerations
- This movie is part of the wider Star Wars saga and franchise. Does it feel consistent with the whole, and like it belongs in the same universe? Does each element in it add to or subtract from the whole? Does it depend on or add to elements seen in other canon media?
- This is also the first episode within the prequel trilogy. Does it establish the characters and plot for this story arc? Does it behave as act one of a wider story, setting up hooks or other elements which’ll pay off later? Does it build anticipation for the following film?
- It is also a stand-alone movie. Does it tell a complete, coherent, end-to-end story that works in isolation from wider context? Is it too dependent on other content? Could you watch only this Star Wars movie and enjoy it?
- In release order, and some popular watching orders, this movie might be watched after the Original Trilogy, as a prequel. Does it serve to expand on and illuminate new facets to that universe? Do the elements of it add value and context to the viewer’s existing knowledge when watched in this order?
- Chronologically, in the saga, this is our first Star Wars movie. Should it be positioned to behave as an introduction to the setting, factions, and themes? Does it carry the exposition it needs to? Does it make the viewer curious to experience the wider saga?
- This movie has been edited many times, but is also very well-known. To what degree should all of the key elements be preserved? Does cutting too much feel jarring to the familiar viewer? Or should quality of experience be the priority?
The Clone Wars: Refocused