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Was Lucas intially against Star Wars being released on any format besides theatrical?

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Did Lucas initially want Star Wars to return to the theaters every seven years and not be viewable any other way? I’ve seen Lucas quoted as saying, “Star Wars will never be on home video.” If this is true, I suspect that as VHS took off, movie studios stopped theatrical re-releases, so Fox said to Lucas, “Either we release Star Wars on VHS or nobody ever sees Star Wars again”, and then Lucas relented.

If Plagueis shows up in the ST, not only will I refuse to watch the movies, but I won't so much as watch the trailers, either. - DuracellEnergizer

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 (Edited)

I think major theatrical reissues were tapering off by the end of the 1970’s, except for revival theaters. Disney was reissuing their classics (every seven years) well into the 1990’s though. That is probably the model George wanted to emulate.

Star Wars was too much of a license to print money for Fox to ever make such a threat, especially if they wanted to distribute the sequels. The home video market was barely in existence when Lucas was quoted circa 1978. By 1982 it was already a considerable new revenue stream for the studios, and George has never been allergic to making money.

originaltrilogy.com Moderator

Where were you in '77?

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Yeah, I always got the impression that George wanted to be able to screen it when he wanted & make it a big event. I remember him saying things like “Star Wars was supposed to be a special event that blew you away. Not something you watch everyday, but more like going to a rock concert.” This was around 1997.
He could also make changes between screenings & it would be harder for the audience to tell what was changed.

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