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Preserving the...*cringe*...Star Wars Holiday Special

Wow, this is really surreal. I’m watching the new Rifftrax streaming version for the first time and it is definitely my version of the crawl. Same edit of the opening Rifftrax commentary, same music I chose, same double dissolve to black at the end of the crawl (a mistake I corrected on my v2 DVD, but present on my original DVD and most likely any other release that used my crawl).

It’s kinda weird knowing I just paid to watch something I created, but at the same time also fun and exciting. Maybe I should contact them and say “you’re welcome”. 😛

Star Wars Holiday Special - Zion Hybrid v2

Thank you for the feedback, everyone. This is exactly what I was looking for with this initial release.

dahmage said:
Sounds like you have your priorities in order! I haven’t checked this out yet, but I am glad that someone is putting the rifftrax on the newer release. Good work

As someone with OCD tendencies, it’s sometimes easier for me to stay on a more familiar path in order to avoid spending hours or days researching and experimenting on a particular aspect without making much progress on the project as a whole. It’ll be right on the final release.

Video Collector said:


While I applaud your efforts on the whole, in a side-by-side comparison with the EditDroid version the G-force cartoon loses quite a lot of the linework due to the heavy DNR. Even with the EditDroid’s serious aliasing (source related), I feel it is the better option.

Looking forward to seeing your future efforts with this project.


I appreciate the specifics on the key differences. I’m leaning toward switching back to the EditDroid version as well.

Dreamaster said:

Don’t be afraid to desaturate the reds and magenta’s even more. To me it looks like the tint needs to be shifted into the green side a few notches as well. Might as well go for broke since you’re going through the trouble and make it look as natural as possible!

Thanks for noticing. I’m thinking about shifting the green/magenta a little bit more in addition to some secondary correction to desaturate the magenta. I’ve noticed several instances where the magenta is still quite overpowering compared to everything else.

Star Wars Holiday Special - Zion Hybrid v2

It’s not that I can’t edit, it’s just that one or two of the plugins weren’t happy with the source being interlaced. I’m sure I can work around that though, I just didn’t want to spend too much time worrying about that at the beginning, preferring instead to get the whole disc put together and always intending to go back and make improvements to the process.

Star Wars Holiday Special - Zion Hybrid v2

The reason I put it in my releases is because my intent is to recreate the version that was originally riffed by the RiffTrax crew. If you look at that particular release, the crawl looked a little different but it was there:


Personally, I like that there are different approaches to the SWHS releases. I can appreciate a release like Tasjo’s WHIO DVD that aims to look and feel more like an original broadcast with the preceeding Hulk/Wonder Woman bumpers and news segment.

Mine is definitely aimed at more of a comedic feel. In addition to the RiffTrax commentary and crawl, the DVD menus and transitions are also meant to be comedic in nature. In fact, my favorite thing on the whole disc is the transition that plays when you select “Play with RiffTrax.” It’s hilarious in a cheesy, stupid sort of way, much like most of the RiffTrax commentary, and, to a lesser extent, the opening crawl.

Star Wars Holiday Special - Zion Hybrid v2

Partially, yes. As I mentioned, this is a beta release, and one of the things I intend to do for the final release is fix some interlacing issues in the menus and with the main program itself. It’s not seriously messed up or anything - far from it. But my workflow for this release ended up being a conversion from 29.97 interlaced to 29.97 progressive in order to make things like resizing and noise reduction more effective. The final product ended up back at 29.97i, but I’ve noticed some jaggies and aliasing issues here and there, such as in the opening crawl and some of the chapter menus. Since my workflow is entirely within Adobe After Effects and Premiere, I haven’t been able to use any of the Avisynth tools I normally do.

Star Wars Holiday Special - Zion Hybrid v2

Admittedly, my decision to use your version was mostly based on the resolution difference, as well as the difference in the amount of color present. I may have to go back and compare the two again to see if the DVNR annoys me enough to switch back, but doing some color correction on yours to look more like the EditDroid (and/or the officially released cells) is definitely an option for the final release.

Star Wars Holiday Special - Zion Hybrid v2

I have completed a beta version of a new release of the Star Wars Holiday Special. It is now up on MySpleen. I am currently working on a few fixes, which I will list in a future post. I am also seeking feedback from the community for possible further improvements.

This is a hybrid release combining the best versions of all currently available sources. It is a recreation of the RiffTrax version of the Holiday Special (i.e. the version originally riffed by the guys at, complete with opening crawl, WMAR commercials, and RiffTrax commentary.


  • Program: EditDroid DVD
  • Commercials: Tasjo v2 DVD [thread]
  • Boba Fett Cartoon: g-force’s blu-ray remastered edition (edited into program) [thread]

The program and commercials have been enhanced with a small amount of color correction and video noise reduction. A conservative amount of sharpening has been applied as well. The commercials were individually color corrected.


  • Original and Rifftrax audio
  • Full motion menus with transitions, including chapter menus
  • Custom DVD first play bumper based on “CBS Special Presentation” bumper
  • Custom 70’s style DVD credits sequence
  • Restored “Fighting the Frizzies” WCBS clip Easter egg - Sourced from WCBS DVD - Filtered video noise and flicker - Audio enhanced with noise reduction
  • A brief program intro explaining this release (I decided to include the intro after hearing feedback from casual fans who viewed my v1 DVD (as well as a couple YouTubers) who didn’t seem to understand why the commercials were left in or that the opening crawl wasn’t part of the original Holiday Special broadcast.)


The bitrate for both audio tracks was set to 192Kbps to match the EditDroid DVD audio track. (There’s no point in going any higher even for the RiffTrax audio because the original commentary MP3 is only 96Kbps).

  • Program audio same as EditDroid DVD
  • Remastered RiffTrax commentary track
  • Audio for commercials enhanced with noise reduction and normalized to -10dBFS


  • Opening crawl re-rendered using a higher quality star field
  • The color of the opening crawl text (and DVD menu text) was changed to match the color of the opening crawl from the Team Negative1 Silver Screen 35mm transfer
  • Smoothed out commercial break transitions compared to previous SWHS RiffTrax releases and resynced RiffTrax audio to match
  • Removed audio noise from commercial break transitions and added proper video dissolves (fade to black goes completely to black, removed audible analog noise during transitions)
  • Kenner Star Wars Commercial: Fixed two audio drops (filled using audio from Rikter’s KCCI DVD)
  • Remastered General Motors sponsor slide (sourced from Tasjo WHIO DVD)
  • Audio for the “Sponsored By… General Motors” announcer clip sourced from Tasjo WHIO DVD (The EditDroid version does not contain this audio clip (or the sponsor slide), and instead has a different take of the announcer saying “The Star Wars Holiday Special is brought to you by…” with no sponsor indicated.)
  • The “Star Wars disco” main menu music has been remastered using higher quality sound effects and samples sourced from the EditDroid DVD
  • Created separate menu transitions for each menu item: Play, Play with RiffTrax, and DVD Credits