Empire of Dreams

Empire of Dreams

"Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy" is a documentary about the making of the original three classic "Star Wars" films: ' (1977), ' (1980), and "" (1983).

The original cut of the documentary ran at around two hours and forty minutes. It was cut down to around two and a half hours, with only ten minutes cut. This final version was released as the main feature on the bonus disc of the 2004 DVD release of the original "Star Wars Trilogy". A shortened version of the documentary premiered on the A&E network in late 2004. This version ran at around ninety minutes, cutting out nearly an hour of content.


The documentary is strictly chronological, divided into five parts, from George Lucas beginning his career as a filmmaker, to the making of the three original "Star Wars" films, to the impact "Star Wars" has made the world today. It was executive produced and directed by Kevin Burns and narrated by Robert Clotworthy. It features interviews with George Lucas and major cast and crew. It puts "Star Wars" into a sociological and political perspective by using interviews with spectators like Walter Cronkite. The documentary was shot in 1.78:1 aspect ratio.

Deleted content

In the original cut of the film, a ten minute segment was included which elaborated on "The Star Wars Holiday Special" and Lucas seeing a mistake in not holding full control over the "Star Wars" franchise. The part was cut, however, because, according to the producers, "it just didn't fit with the pacing of the film."

The official "Star Wars" site reported in September 2004 on "Empire of Dreams". Originally there was to be some coverage of the Holiday Special, but it wound up being cut to help shorten the already lengthy documentary. Here's a relevant quote from the article:

Burns explains.

:But the footage didn't quite fit with the overall premise of the documentary and instead ended up on the cutting room floor, "until I can make a director's cut of Empire of Dreams," Burns jokes.

On a similar note, Comingsoon.net reported on the rollout presentation of the "Star Wars" Trilogy DVD at the Silent Movie Theater in Los Angeles, where various names who worked on the DVD were in attendance, including Kevin Burns. Here's another quote from Burns regarding the Holiday Special:

:Shortly after, a certain other guest interrupted::"At that point a very familiar voice in the back yelled out,

It was Mark Hamill himself, who had sneaked into the back of the theater. His impromptu comment generated a lot of laughter in the audience to which Kevin added,

Notable exclusions

*Any mention of the Emperor, played by Ian McDiarmid.
*Any mention of "The Star Wars Holiday Special"
*The appearance of David Prowse in person.


* [http://www.everything2.com/index.pl?node_id=1679404 Everything2 Node: Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy (by David Lawson)]

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