I wouldn’t say it’s been cool since 1977. I’d say it became more like T2. People who saw it thought it was cool in their heads, but it became dated and less must see every passing year. Not unlike alot of sci-fi. Only cool in fans minds, ya know.
Speaking as someone who’s actually been around since 1977, poppycock! The first ever official SW con was held in 1987, and that place was packed. Star Tours opened at Disneyland the same year. You don’t build a multimillion dollar theme park ride around a fading franchise.
Star Wars never left the public consciousness. President Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative was nicknamed Star Wars by the press, much to Lucas’ dismay. Reagan even called Russia The Evil Empire.
The OT was never out of print on home video. The 1993 LD boxset was a big deal at the time. Just about every electronics or department store with a wall of tv’s would use one of the trilogy as demo material.
The Special Editions made enough money to prove people still cared about a galaxy far far away.
Where were you in '77?