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Star Wars Abridged (9 films cut down to 3) (a WIP)

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 (Edited)

I’ve been meaning to post this on here for a long time… I’ve been working on this off and on for over a year now: a trilogy of 3-in-1s that tells the Star Wars saga in as short a time as possible.

WIPs are available! Here’s some basic changes:

Star Wars: Abridged I - The Republic (~2.5 hours)
Most of the changes here have been seen before in other edits. Things that are more unique to this cut are:

  • The removal of the prophecy
  • A prologue with Qui Gon Jinn as a Jedi recruiter on Tatooine (the only scene from TPM) to set up Anakin’s attachment to his mom (I know everyone likes using Maul as the prologue, but it makes more narrative sense to set up his relationship with his mother)
  • Anakin and Padme have never met before and Padme was never a queen
  • Anakin and Padme kiss on the couch and it’s heavily implied it leads to more

Star Wars: Abridged II - The Rebellion (~3.66 hours)
There was a lot of work that went into this edit. A lot of the major events have been shifted or altered.

  • Only 1 Death Star
  • No Ewoks or ground battle
  • A very condensed prologue built from Rogue One’s climax
  • Han escapes Bespin and is the one to destroy the Death Star
  • No Jabba’s palace
  • Alderaan isn’t destroyed. Grand Moff Tarkin bombards it with guns from the Executor
  • Hoth is the rebel base instead of Yavin 4
  • The Battle of Hoth has been completely reworked to include a space battle built from the Scarif space battle, Yavin 4, and a bit of Endor while the ground battle is also waged
  • No asteroid escape (needed these shots for Han destroying the Death Star)
  • Originally I intended to have Palpatine’s return teased here but since plans for the third film have radically changed, I need to remove that.

Star Wars: Abridged III - The Resistance (~2 hours)
I went through different possible versions of this but realized I would have to completely overhaul the plot to make this 3-in-1 work. Unlike the PT and OT 3-in-1s, there’s substantial narrative changes here. The biggest realization I came to was that the sequels relied to heavily on the OT characters and that nostalgia became a crutch for a variety of reasons… so I removed Han, Leia, Lando, and Palpatine. Luke is another matter but he’s only in this sparingly.

  • Moved the time frame a further generation in the future
  • Rey is now the Han and Leia’s granddaughter, Padawan Rey Solo
  • Kylo Ren is no longer Ben Solo. He was a Jedi seduced to the dark side by Snoke and committed a second Jedi Purge which only Rey escaped
  • Rey and Kylo were lovers once which provides the emotional character throughline through this edit
  • Poe and Chewbacca are the leaders of the Resistance
  • Rey is searching for the secret journal of Luke Skywalker which she finds at his old homestead on Tatooine that she digs up outside (sidenote: I still need to film a shot myself to plug this in)
  • Jakku is now Tatooine
  • Poe meets with a First Order defector to retrieve classified plans (of Starkiller Base rather than a map)
  • Starkiller Base is located on Kyber rich Exogal
  • Luke searched for Exogal and his trail went cold at Ahch-To
  • Canto Bight actually has a point now. Rose and Finn travel there to find a master codebreaker who can get them onto Starkiller base to deactivate the shields so the Resistance fleet can arrive.
  • Rey finds no one living on Ahch-To and the force connections between her and Kylo have been substantially reworked
  • The D’Qar battle has Snoke’s ship in it and is intercut with Rey arriving
  • The final battle is a mix between Rose and Finn infiltrating Starkiller Base, Poe and the Resistance facing off against the First Order fleet guarding the base, and the Death Star duel has been repurposed as taking place on Exogal

All three films begin with a prologue. Originally I was going to do without the opening scroll but the changes I’ve made to Abridged III really requires one for context. So all 3 will have their opening scrolls reinstated.

I’ve done most of the heavy lifting and am now going back to refine everything as best as I can. It will be impossible to get these edits perfect, however… I’m a pretty good editor but I only have rudimentary audio and compositing skills (at best) and some of the edits are monstrous Frankensteinian beasts. After getting these work prints to a satisfying narrative place, however, I can now finish this off and hopefully smooth as much of those issues out. Let me know if anyone wants to see the workprints! Feedback is really welcome at this point!