I have a Fan Edit of Episode 1 that is now listed over at FE. TV's Frink has encouraged me to become an active member of the OT community. I figure posting a Fan Edit would be a good start.
This is my first fan edit and it was quite a labor of patience and love. It was first and foremost made for what I want to see in the Star Wars Prequels, but it is my hope that it is enjoyable by anyone that loves Star Wars.
This is a very aggressive edit. I have reduced the running time to a very lean 96 minutes so that the story, which originally lacked urgency in any regard, now moves along at a pace that is appropriate for characters in this situation.. well, at least as much as can be achieved with the dialog available!
I also contacted Adywan and received his permission to use his color corrected version of TPM to correct the god-awful hues that permeate the DVD release, his work is particularly pleasing on Tatooine, but also in the Naboo and during the final battle in space. Sadly the deleted scenes do not benefit from his color work and I engaged the assistance of a fellow editor to assist with those and then made further adjustments as best I could. The Greedo scene adjusts fairly well, but the overall quality of the Probe Droid scene is terrible to start with and I'll admit up-front, it does stand out.
With this edit I set out to accomplish three primary goals
- Drastically improve the many flawed characters as much as possible.
- Drastically improve the overall tone and pacing of the film
- Restructure the narrative so that Anakin Skywalker is the true hero of the film
*Please note that this edit does NOT remove the Virgin Birth/Prophecy aspects of the movie. It is my intention to edit the entire PT and try to highlight the idea that Lord Plagueis caused Anakin to be conceived by the force.
MU links available at fanedit.info
Major Areas addressed
Boss Nass: My goal with Boss Nass and the Gungans in general was to make them more ominous by removing as much of their terrible dialog, slobbering, howling and shaking of lips as possible. They are now presetned as distrustful of outsiders, but not incompetent and it is now believable that they have attained the level of technical sophistication that they are presented with.
The Jedi and Jar Jar Binks are in trouble and to be punished for bringing outsiders into Otah City rather than returning from banishment (a subplot that has been removed). The Jedi escape punishment for trespassing by using Mind Tricks, which causes surprise by the guards as they are certain the outsiders will be punished.
Jar Jar Binks: Everybody's favorite Gungan has been heavily edited to remove nearly ALL of his annoying screen presence. I have removed all of his toilet humor and almost all of his physical comedy without removing the critical plot points. Jar Jar now melts into the background, bound to Qui-Gon by his life-debt. He now quietly follows the Qui-gon and now no longer inserts himself into every scene possible. I have completely removed the sub-plot of him being clumsy and a bumbling idiot.
As much as possible I sought to reduce their cowardice. While it cannot be completely eliminated, they now active participants in Palpatine's plot. While we still never find out what they have to gain by aligning with him, it doesn't matter. Because they now behave in a manner that appears to have unspoken motivation we don't have to care about why; they have made a deal with a Sith Lord who somehow can manipulate the Senate to their advantage. Whatever they each get from the bargain is immaterial to the story as long as the relationship is convincing and consistent.
First and foremost I have removed as much of the yippee and woohoo's as possible, or at least where they were colloquial. When appropriate to an action he is doing or has done, I have left some in. But more importantly I wanted to present him as a person of action, being decisive rather than an accidental hero. This is particularly important in Act 3.
I have re-cut the flow of events to now make Anakin the hero of the story, which was one of the biggest flaws of the original. His victory against the Droid Control Ship is hollow since the Queen has captured the Viceroy. Once she captures him, all other story-lines become pointless. Anakin is now an active and purposeful hero who no longer accidentally enters the battle, nor apologetically destroys the Control Ship. The Gungan battle is aggressively edited to remove all ridiculous Jar Jar moments, it is brief and to the point an no longer weighs down Act 3.
Action Action Action!
The pacing is improved by getting to the point ASAP. Sequences which add nothing to the story are either cut entirely (Planet Core) or heavily reduced (Pod Race). Almost every scene has some modification to it in order to eliminate redundant and/or obvious exposition, as well as poorly written and/or delivered dialog. The only two scenes that are untouched are those between Padme and Palpatine. Scenes of particular note:
- Dinner sequence
- Pod Race
- Anakin's freedom/good-bye to his mother
General cut list (well over 200 total cuts, so individual cuts not listed)
- New Title/Crawl
- Eliminate Neimoidian cowardliness/uncertainty
- Eliminate Jar Jar's clumsiness and antics - 99% removed, if you hate Jar Jar, this is your edit.
- Eliminate midichlorians entirely
- Eliminate title of Darth (long-term goal for entire PT is to restore Darth as the name of Vader, not a generic Sith Title)
- Remove Obi-Wan's nonsense about symbiotic relationship between Gungans and the Naboo.
- Cut Planet Core sequences
- Eliminate entire sequence of Fake Queen being apprised of how the ship was saved, R2's introduction, ordering the real queen to clean R2, the argument between Panaka and Qui-Gon about Tatooine, and then Jar Jar's recap of the entire movie to Padme.
- Cut Watto's declaration of immunity to Mind Tricks due to his species
- Reinsert portion of Deleted Scene where Anakin Fights Greedo; this replaces the Sebulba/Jar Jar fight and is now how Anakin joins their group/invites them to his place (Phantom Editor idea)
- Recut Dinner sequence to be focused, remove bad dialog
- Cut Anakin's friends swarming around him as he works on the Pod Racer
- Cut out Jabba
- Eliminate Hill-Billy Sand People from Pod Race (despite value of humor, they detract from tension of the race for a quick joke, plus, their place as a truly deadly/threatening race that helps push Anakin to the Dark Side is cheapened when they become the butt of a joke)
- Eliminate all silly aspects of the Pod Race (Bob the Builder announcer, long introductions to characters we don't care about, silly interplay between Sebulba and various racers as he takes them out
- Eliminate Qui-gon preaching Lucas' morals to Watto in the viewers box after the race
- Recut sequence where Anakin learns he is free, more serious and touching
- Eliminate C-3PO POV sequence
- Recut Anakin's goodbye to his mother, more emotional, less certain, plus eliminate line about returning to free slaves, no payoff, points to an Ep2 plot point that never materializes
- Reinsert portion of the Deleted Scene where Qui-gon cuts the Sith Probe Droid and they run off (very poor quality, apologies in advance!!)
- Reduce Ric Olie's observationgs
- Eliminate Nute Gunray taunting Sio Bibble from his walking throne
- Eliminate Anakin looking for Padme to say goodbye
- Eliminate terrible pick-up scene with fat-faced Obi-Wan apologizing to Qui-Gon while they wait for Jar Jar to return from Otah City.
- Recut entire 3rd act to improve pacing and make Anakin the hero
- Eliminate the ascension gun sequence during the assault on the palace
- Cut Disney Main-Street Parade ending
Dual Layer NTSC DVD with:
- 5.1 Audio
- Chapter selections
- Commentary Track (2.0 Audio)
- Deleted Scene (and explanation title cards)
- Alternate musical ending - Duel of the Fates instead of traditional Star Wars 'Crash' for closing credits. (5.1)
Single Layer NTSC DVD with:
- 5.1 Audio
- Chapter Selectiosn
- Commentary Track (2.0 Audio)
*No alien language subtitles.