Walt Disney Studios and Lucasfilm Ltd. are currently in the process of assembling their own Star Wars multimedia shared universe, complete with new interconnecting books, animated TV shows, and (of course) more live-action films. The first six live-action Star Wars movies still make up the core of the franchise, of course – that’s why Disney and Lucasfilm are working together with 20th Century Fox (the distributor for Episodes I-VI) to bring those features into the Digital HD era.
The first six Star Wars films will be released as a complete digital movie collection this Friday across various platforms (iTunes, Amazon, etc.) – as listed off at the end of the TV spot for the release, which has been embedded above. Furthermore, the Digital HD collection will include bonus materials that were packaged with the previous Star Wars movies home viewing releases, as well as brand-new features that have not been made available before.
Here is the statement from Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy, regarding the Star Wars movies Digital HD collection release:
“We’re thrilled that fans will be able to enjoy the Star Wars Saga on their digital devices wherever they go. These films broke new ground in technology, design, sound, and visual effects, and we’ve created some very special bonus material which delves into the Saga’s rich history, including new and never-before-released conversations between legendary Star Wars artists – the masters who helped George [Lucas] bring his iconic universe to life.”
That additional bonus material includes the “Discoveries from Inside” featurettes – examining subjects like the uses of models/miniatures in The Phantom Menace and the costume design for Attack of the Clones – as well as the “Conversations” featurettes where key contributors to the series (like concept artist/VFX production designer Doug Chiang) discusses their experiences working on the franchise. That will be in addition to “classic” bonus features, which include previously-released deleted scenes/bloopers from each of the first six Star Wars films – and so forth.
Bear in mind, longtime Star Wars fans: the Digital HD Collection will feature versions of Episodes IV-VI that includes all the Lucas-approved alterations and changes that’ve been made over the years – and which, now, are considered “canon”. You will have to check out unofficial Star Wars-related projects (like the “Despecialized Edition”) for the original theatrical cuts of Lucas’ first three Star Wars movies.
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Star Wars: The Digital Movie Collection (featuring Episodes I-VI) will be released this Friday, April 10th.
Meanwhile, the saga continues later this year when Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens opens in theaters on December 18th, 2015.
Source: Walt Disney Studios, Lucasfilm Ltd., 20th Century Fox