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"The People Vs. George Lucas" documentary...

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This was a news item over at Rebelscum. A documentary where fans will be able to speak their mind, (or vent their spleen!) it seems. Interesting idea...
originaltrilogy.com Moderator

Where were you in '77?

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This will only get us cemented as forever-unsatisfied whiney fanboys. But if people complain "where the fuck is the original Star Wars??" maybe it will be another loud voice to ring up to the ivory tower in Skywalker Ranch. That is really the only in Star Wars fandom that requires us to actually address the guy, complaining about Jar Jar and Anakin is lame, Lucas just lapsed as a filmmaker and you can never change that so move on. The OOT issue is something that can have something done about it, however. Eh, being a Star Wars fan makes me tired sometimes.

The Secret History of Star Wars -- now available on Amazon.com!

"When George went back and put new creatures into the original Star Wars, I find that disturbing. It’s a revision of history. That bothers me."

--James Cameron, Entertainment Weekly, April 2010

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Originally posted by: zombie84
This will only get us cemented as forever-unsatisfied whiney fanboys. But if people complain "where the fuck is the original Star Wars??" maybe it will be another loud voice to ring up to the ivory tower in Skywalker Ranch. That is really the only in Star Wars fandom that requires us to actually address the guy, complaining about Jar Jar and Anakin is lame, Lucas just lapsed as a filmmaker and you can never change that so move on. The OOT issue is something that can have something done about it, however. Eh, being a Star Wars fan makes me tired sometimes.



Amen brother!
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I like this idea.

Originally posted by: zombie84
This will only get us cemented as forever-unsatisfied whiney fanboys. But if people complain "where the fuck is the original Star Wars??" maybe it will be another loud voice to ring up to the ivory tower in Skywalker Ranch. That is really the only in Star Wars fandom that requires us to actually address the guy, complaining about Jar Jar and Anakin is lame, Lucas just lapsed as a filmmaker and you can never change that so move on. The OOT issue is something that can have something done about it, however. Eh, being a Star Wars fan makes me tired sometimes.

It's more work than it should be, isn't it?

I agree we should concentrate on the OOT and forget about the PT. The PT is over and done with.

BTW, don't "fanboys" love everything GL does?

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Much as I like to distance myself from fanbois and fanfilms - sometimes I wonder about making a fanfilm. You know, to show Lucas and the fans that a "Star Wars" film is still possible. I know many fanfilms have been made, but even the better ones like "Troops" are too pastiche to actually be Star Wars IMO (a stormtrooper wearing high-heels?!) - my fanfilm however would be officially syndicated by Lucasfilm and not shown on TV or the internet for at least a decade ....
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If it were to simply focus on the battle for the OOT, then that would be cool. But in the end, I'm starting to completely lose hope of ever seeing the OOT in a good format.

“What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one.”

Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death

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Then the Emperor has already won ...
I am fluent in over six million forms of procrastination.
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Greetings! I'm the director of the film, and I thought I'd join the discussion, because this site was definitely a huge inspiration for us to move forward with this project. I really want to invite all of you to visit our website and take a moment to read our 'About' section, which will hopefully give you a better understanding of what we're trying to accomplish. In a nutshell, we want to go way beyond the obvious and fun-to-discuss issues that fans love to argue about (Jar Jar, Midichlorians, did Han shoot first?, etc.), and give the fans the power to openly express their wishes and frustrations regarding the OOT issue (for instance), which, in my mind, is rooted in the larger question of creative ownership vs. public ownership--two often irreconcilable ideas. Our ultimate objective with this doc (and I'll save the details for an upcoming interview with www.starwarsy.pl) is to engage Lucasfilm and, hopefully, George Lucas, in the debate, and to act as mediators between them and the fans. There's one thing you said that really resonated with me: "being a SW fan makes me tired sometimes." That's exactly the way I have felt for years, and I think that's why I came up with the idea for this film. I'm really hoping that, through dialogue, we can improve the strange dynamic between Lucasfilm and the fans. It's also the first film that will be truly shaped by the fans, so if you're passionate about the OOT issue, the constant re-releases of the films, or the original trilogy vs. the new one, please pick up a camera and send us your footage! We want to be an open and friendly platform for those of you wishing to express and articulate your thoughts, wishes, and complaints. Anyway... enough said. Check out our website, and feel free to e-mail me at any time if you have any questions, or if I can support you in any way.
Alexandre O. Philippe
The People vs. George Lucas
Release date: 2009
Which side are you on?
www.peoplevsgeorge.com
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Alexandre, I definitely want to participate, and I will try to shoot some footage for you as soon as I can (probably in January, after everything has settled down).

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From what I've read here briefly (I'll check out your website at a late date when I have more time) you seem to have the right idea with your documentary and I wish you the best of luck with it. As long as the focus is to convey to Lucas how much love/admiration there is for the OOT amongst the fanbase and beyond into the wider public. Not just a bunch of fanboys saying they've made George Lucas rich over the last 30 years and he owes them the OOT.

"Well here's a big bag of rock salt" - Patton Oswalt

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Originally posted by: see you auntie
From what I've read here briefly (I'll check out your website at a late date when I have more time) you seem to have the right idea with your documentary and I wish you the best of luck with it. As long as the focus is to convey to Lucas how much love/admiration there is for the OOT amongst the fanbase and beyond into the wider public. Not just a bunch of fanboys saying they've made George Lucas rich over the last 30 years and he owes them the OOT.


Agreed. I think that the focus should be on the respect that we have for him (in spite of the lack of respect that he has for us). No one is asking Lucas to stop the SEs or the PT. ALL that the fans want is for him to put out a high quality version of the OOT. That's ALL. WE NEED TO BE CIVIL, WE NEED TO NOT BE ANNOYING FANBOYS, WE NEED TO MAKE OUT POINT WELL IN A WAY THAT SOUNDS MATURE AND RESPECTFUL.

Here's Mr. English Major Writer's small example: A film can mean so many things. Consider, for example, that moment that a you person sees a certain movie and decides that they want to become a filmmaker. Or that movie that got someone through the hard times when they were in a hospital bed, or that was an instrumental part in forming a bond with a friend, or that they took their beloved to before asking for his or her hand in marriage. Consider the person interview on The Shawshank Redemption DVD who decided not to commit suicide because of the power of the film. A film is so much more than just a simple piece of entertainment sometimes. A film can change lives. A film can become something more than it was intended. A film can take on a life of its own and have meaning beyond anything that some people could ever imagine.

Does that mean that we're OWED the OOT? No, of course it doesn't. But at least it'll give some people and idea of how so many people feel. Not that George will care, but like I say, at least we should be respectful.

“What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one.”

Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death

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Well said, Mike O. Believe me, we have no desire to make just another fan film, and respect is the key to starting an engaging and intelligent dialogue between the parties. Again, we have approached Lucasfilm about this, and we're hoping to talk to some of their guys as well. Of course, there will be an entertaining component to the film as well--otherwise, it would become too much of an intellectual exercise, and that would hardly make for a compelling film. Our title, of course, is tongue-in-cheek; but it was carefully chosen, because it's all about empowering the fans to speak up and feel comfortable saying what's on their mind. Ultimately, this film will reveal that the 'love-hate' relationship that most SW fans seem share with the franchise and George Lucas is ultimately rooted in a profound affection for both. The frustrations are genuine, and my hope is that we'll gain enough momentum to get Lucas' attention and convince him to open up and listen. It goes without saying that the most important thing you can all do (if you want this to work) is to get involved and spread the word about the film. This is a unique opportunity to show George Lucas how much we want to engage in an intelligent discussion with him, and the thousands of hits we've received from 48 countries in 48 hours and the encouraging e-mail messages from fans across the globe gave us a lot of confidence in the film's potential. I think this will be an important film for the fans, and I'm hoping for your support and participation. Talk to your friends about it, mention the film in other forums, and always feel free to e-mail me directly if you have any questions, concerns or suggestions. Our entire team is, truly, dedicated to helping your voice be heard.
Alexandre O. Philippe
The People vs. George Lucas
Release date: 2009
Which side are you on?
www.peoplevsgeorge.com
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I wish your project luck.

My take is that the original films were so amazing that they deserve a high degree of loving attention. What fans crave or George Lucas owns doesn't matter to me so much by comparison. It's a moral issue realizing that great art and hard work deserve both respect and honor. The original story and the original form of the classic trilogy should get careful, individual treatment apart from George's latest edit of the week (history alone should require at least this much).

"Now all Lucas has to do is make a cgi version of himself.  It will be better than the original and fit his original vision." - skyjedi2005

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I really wish the original movies were controlled by a faceless corporation, because I like the guy and all this seems too personal. And it feels weird and embarrassing to be begging for the privilege of giving my money for something that should be so simple. If I believed it was some Kubrick-y artistic integrity thing, I could let it go, but with all the trinkets Lucas WILL sell (action figures of his family etc., I still get email from my long-expired fan club subscription trying to sell me stuff) uh, no. So, I'll probably keep adding my own small voice to the chorus wanting those original versions treated well, since that's the only way it'll happen. This movie raises the question, it will be interesting to see if Lucas ever tries to interact with fans more directly, since the future of Star Wars (games, cartoons, toys, the TV show) is so much more connected to that hardcore world than it was before..
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Very good point, Tiptup. Mention how people would feel if the Mona Lisa were altered, etc. It's not just about what the fans want. The extraordinary amount of historical importance that the films have is definately a key thing to mention, and if we could somehow hear from some of the people who have been involved in the production and have been vocal about it (Gary Kurtz, et. al) and if possible some of the people unhappy with the changes that have been made to their work.

I'm thinking of JediRandy. I know he'll probably think that this film sounds like idiotic whining on oue part and will say that we're being stupid for participating, but we should bear in mind that he's made lots of points about us whining about "our" movie (which it's NOT, and we should not claim it to be), and we'll doubtlessly have to face many people like him making counterpoints, and we must be civil, find places to agree to disagree, and show how a good OOT HD-DVD release would help people meet in the middle. Not that he'd care. He probably thinks that this is a stupid idea and that we're all whining.

“What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one.”

Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death

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slightly Off Topic....

I've said this before, but, "altering the Mona Lisa" is a BAD example. Leonardo carried that painting around with him for YEARS & CONTINUED to work on it for YEARS. he made MANY alterations before it became the masterpiece as we now know it.

& since i'm on the subject, just thought i'd clarify a pet peeve of mine. His name is Leonardo... NOT "da Vinci", despite what an ignorant book from recent years might have you believe... Calling him "da Vinci" would be like calling Michael Jordan "from Chicago".

Anyways, hope that doesn't come across too snarky, as it's not meant to be. Just wanted to clarify some common misconceptions about an incredible artist & his most famous painting.

Back on topic, this sounds like an interesting project & i hope it's recieved well. maybe it will help those in power to see the light & release the OOT in all it's glory. & i strongly agree with the sentiments of preserving the art as it was first shown. even if alterations are made, the original version should be preserved so people can see what made the landmark impact on people of the time, & then see how it changed over the years.

So, i guess i agree with the idea you're expressing with the mona lisa example. It's just that the mona lisa is a poor choice to exemplify that idea....
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Originally posted by: canofhumdingers
slightly Off Topic....

I've said this before, but, "altering the Mona Lisa" is a BAD example. Leonardo carried that painting around with him for YEARS & CONTINUED to work on it for YEARS. he made MANY alterations before it became the masterpiece as we now know it.

& since i'm on the subject, just thought i'd clarify a pet peeve of mine. His name is Leonardo... NOT "da Vinci", despite what an ignorant book from recent years might have you believe... Calling him "da Vinci" would be like calling Michael Jordan "from Chicago".

So, i guess i agree with the idea you're expressing with the mona lisa example. It's just that the mona lisa is a poor choice to exemplify that idea....

Just to play devil's advocate a bit .......was the Mona Lisa exibited in a museum before the alterations were made? If so, I'd say you have a point. Otherwise, I'd say that the alterations he made were no different than the many alterations that an unfinished film goes through before it's exibited.

Also, (I know I've asked this before as well) didn't most surnames originally come from people's occupations or places of origin?

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These are precisely the topics we'd like to explore in the film (among others). And I also want to acknowledge Mike O here and say that your comment about "annoying fan boys" really resonated with me. The only SW site to shoot our project down so far is Club Jade, and that's because they think we're just a bunch of whining fan boys hoping to ride on George's coat tails. Of course, if they'd taken the time to read our website, they might have a different perspective on what we're trying to accomplish. Call me optimistic, but my secret hope is that this doc will be a turning point in the dynamic between Lucasfilm and the fans, and that it will put the pressure on them to finally release the OOT on DVD, Blu-Ray and HD DVD.
Alexandre O. Philippe
The People vs. George Lucas
Release date: 2009
Which side are you on?
www.peoplevsgeorge.com
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On the Mona Lisa topic: The response of many will probably be "Why is OK for Ridley Scott to release several cuts of Blade Runner, Spielberg to redo Close Encounters three times, etc. etc.?" Well, the SEs suck and they don't . OK, seriously, we need to discuss how all versions of those are out there in HIGH QUALITY RELEASES. It's not about denying the SEs. However much many fans dislike them is irrelevant. The point is that the original deserve the same treatment. Lucas always claims that the SEs are so vastly superior. Lets see him put him money where his mouth is.

“What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one.”

Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death

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On the topic of the mona Lisa, recently researchers x-rayed it and discovered three major layers underneath the final coat, meaning that Leonardo went and redid it twice after his first rough-in. No doubt some may see this as a parallel to the SE. They forget an important distinction: 1977's Star Wars was a final product, faithful to the script and to the best of the filmmaker's ability, released to the public and charged admission to view--and, like the Mona Lisa, 1977's Star Wars too has rougher version: the rough cuts, workprints, and the so-called Lost Cut from late 1976 to early 1977. Star Wars is not is not a rough version of the Special Edition, the Special Edition is its own entity.

The Secret History of Star Wars -- now available on Amazon.com!

"When George went back and put new creatures into the original Star Wars, I find that disturbing. It’s a revision of history. That bothers me."

--James Cameron, Entertainment Weekly, April 2010

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I totally respect Lucas's authorship rights to do what he pleases with his own work, but as another poster mentioned it would be great to have an official restoration of "Star Wars", warts and all. It's the movie that made me want to make movies. The SE is the movie that reminds me great art is never finished; it is abandoned. As a snapshot on the movie and how it was made, I really dig Deleted Magic - a fully restored OT Star Wars would be a great companion to that.
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This sounds interesting. I've talked about why I joined this site but I'll try to repeat it here in a more condensed form.
I'm 21 but I never really grew up with the original films. I saw what I now know to be one of the last tv airings of the original Return of the Jedi on Christmas Eve 1996 but that's about it. In 2003, I saw Star Wars from the Death Star rebel briefing scene with the CG schematic on to the end. I remember wondering how it was possible to have that ring in the Death Star explosion back when the film was made, it looked like a modern CG effect. Not that it looked bad but my dad said they made some recent changes to the film. I thought that was nuts, like it was said on the Q & A of the Back to the Future dvd, they didn't erase the wires because they didn't believe in doing it. I figured that was shared by everyone in filmmaking.
My first year in college, I finally watch A New Hope as part of an assignment for one of my classes. It was just before the '04 dvd release so I borrowed someone's '97 special edition tape. I was bored by the beginning doc where they talked about the changes. I remember thinking when they talked about Jabba "I thought Jabba the Hutt was a serious bad guy, wouldn't Han Solo get in big trouble for stepping on his tale?"
I had just read the book Eragon a month earlier so unfortunately, watching the actual movie felt like a cliche ridden lame rip off of something else, rather than how it is actually the other way around. One thing that annoyed me was how the good guys always hit their targets with the ray guns while the bad guys missed. Even if they were sitting across each other at the same table.
I'm excited to get the (full screen) dvd set that Christmas. I've never had the movies before so any version is fine with me. Besides, I'm more excited to see the supposed state of the art restoration. But from the start, somehow the movies just don't look right to me. I remember wondering if that is really how good they are supposed to look, something just seems unnatural.
After seeing Empire of Dreams which I thought was really good, I now understand the importance and significance of the original film and wish I could see that version. Eventually, I find this site and realize Lucas apparently intends to never release the originals again which I find unbelievable. I later am able to finally watch the original versions on vhs with a friend at college since our library fortunately had the faces set. And I enjoyed it so much better than either the '97 tape or the dvd set. Now aware of just how bad the colors are in the dvd's, I remember saying to my friend that I bet if Lucasfilm just ported the THX versions professionally to dvd, it would look much better than the bootlegs and even the current dvd set due to the bad colors. I suppose I should regret saying that now (I didn't realize how bad the smearing is) but actually, even on my family's widescreen tv, I think the official '06 versions look better because the colors are not screwed up. And it does look a lot better than the bootleg set I have as well.

Well I guess that wasn't short after all. But I think the important thing is that most people will be happy as long as the OOT gets a proper release. I actually enjoyed the prequels having rented the first 2 from my college's library in early '05 and then seen ep III in the theatre. I don't really care that much about whether the prequels could have been better or all that. They are finished and I assume pretty much the way Lucas intended for them to be. I believe Lucas would be forgiven and win back many if he just stated the next time the trilogy is released, it will include all versions like Ridley Scott did with Alien, Legend and now Blade Runner and Steven Spielberg did with E. T. and now with Close Encounters. That's all he needs to do and most of the bitterness towards him, the SE's and prequels will melt away. And I even think Lucas would feel like an idiot for not getting it right the first time.

Take back the trilogy. Execute Order '77

http://www.youtube.com/user/Knightmessenger

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I saw Star Wars when I was 6 or 7 at the cinema. I never looked forward to a film more than the release of Empire. Because Lucas is an adult and a businessman I don't think he saw how he was meddling with people's nostalgia and very emotional attachment to the OT which had help establish Lucasfilm's own empire in the first place. Plus he probably doesn't care much for Marcia's authorship of the edit. I think the PT is almost a self acknowledgement of his own path, no matter how poorly executed I believe the direction to be. It does make Vader a far more interesting character, but it also introduces co-incidence as a dramatic device ... which sucks. Anyway, if Lucas could bring himself to restore and release the OT in its original form on HD or SD then this sucker would be (re)buying it (my VHS copies are long gone).