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Original Star Wars trilogy to get DVD release (finally!)



Story: Jack Foley

ADVANCE orders of the original Star Wars trilogy on DVD have topped Amazo’s UK website almost six months before their September release.

The eagerly-anticipated box set is number one on the site's top 100 DVD chart, having claimed pole position just 24 hours after the retail side made it available to pre-order, for £29.

The success means it has beaten DVDs of recent hits such as The Matrix Revolutions and Love Actually in the Amazon chart.

September’s release date will mark the first time the original films - Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back and The Return of the Jedi - have been available on DVD, and suitably whet the appetite ahead of the release of the final film in the new trilogy, which is due for cinematic release in 2005.

That film has yet to be named, although Star Wars fans are licking their lips at the prospect of seeing Anakin Skywalker’s path to the dark side of The Force finally being realised.

POSTED EARLIER: AS anticipation builds ahead of the release of the final part in the new Star Wars trilogy, Lucasfilm has announced that the original three films in the series will be released on DVD for the first time, in September.

The news, which is sure to delight any movie fan with a DVD, was announced on Wednesday, February 11, and confirms that Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi will be released as part of a four-disc box set, with bonus footage and improved picture and sound quality.

Jim Ward, executive producer for Lucasfilm, said he hoped the DVDs, which are sure to feature among the Christmas best-sellers, would be ‘as memorable as seeing the movies for the first time’.

It should also serve to heighten the excitement ahead of Star Wars: Episode 3, which is due to hit theatres in May 2005.

Needless to say, the US and Canada will be the first to own the DVDs, from September 21, although an international release will follow soon after.

The bonus disc will provide fans with new features, including a feature-length documentary which is being billed as ‘the most comprehensive ever produced about the Star Wars saga’. It will also include previously unseen footage from the making of all three films.

What’s more, each film, which will only be available as part of the collection, has been digitally restored and re-mastered for superior sound and picture quality.

Mr Ward told the BBC: "We know how long fans have waited for this release and how much they have been looking forward to it. So everyone has been working overtime to make sure that the Star Wars trilogy on DVD is an awesome experience."

Further details of what to expect, and international release dates, will be released on the official Star Wars website, which fans have been advised to keep a keen eye on over the coming months.

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