Star Wars has the folllowing versions:
(each distinct audio/visual combination listed separately)
1 - 1977 premier version - limited release. Preserved in Puggo Grand and Moth3r’s bootleg (and a few other sources). Identified by alternate end credits and 3 effects shots that were revised (the Star Destroyer shooting at the Falcon, the matte painting composite outside the hanger on Yavin IV, the planet/jungle composite of the fighters taking off). Likely all 70 mm prints were of this version. Featured one of the first 4 track surround sound mixes using the Dolby Stereo system. 1977 sound mix was the same for both matrix stereo and 6 track magnetic on 70 mm prints (the 70 mm prints featured at least one LFE track, probably two)
2 - 1977 wide release version - changed the end credits and the three effects shots. Also introduced the mono mix. Preserved in the Technicolor IB prints and all the known 35 mm prints. All foreign language versions of the film come from this edit.
3 - 1981 re-release - changed the opening crawl to add Episode IV and A New Hope. Otherwise the same as 2. It seems older prints in good shape had the new crawl spliced on so some prints may have been from the premier version.
4 - 1982-1985 home video release - A unique version found in home video that usually featured the 81 crawl, the original premier version of the three effects shots, and the revised end credits. 77 sound mix.
5 - 1985-1989 home video release - A unique version found in home video that featured the 81 crawl, the original premier version of the three effects shots, and the revised end credits. Preserved in the JSC. New sound mix.
6 - 1985 new interpositive version - 2 with the 1981 crawl. First release was the Definitive Edition with a new sound mix.
7 - 2006 GOUT - 6 with the original 1977 crawl put back. Essentially the same as 2, but with the audio mix of 6.
8 - 1997 SE
9 - 2004 DVD
10 - 2011 Blu-ray
Because of the timeline that some of the events are tied to (the foreign language prints, the mono mix, the extant 35 mm prints, the new interpostive in 1985), the alternate end credits and the alternate version of the three effects shots must be from the earliest prints. The negative was edited and remained unchanged (except for the opening crawl) from 1977 until the SE edits were made. My guess as to why so many versions of the home video feature the alternate three effects shot is that they used either interpostives or prints from the premier batch and updated the opening crawl and end credits. And they are only found in English language editions.
I know that the “3 effects shots that were revised” were in 77, but it might still be interesting to have them on the list. Does anyone have a preservation of the JSC that can send me those three shots?
“005 is super hep” - dahmage
Star Wars Revisited Wordpress / Facebook / Twitter
005’s List of List & Comparisons