Placeholder Image

字幕表 動画を再生する

  • A long time ago

  • in San Anselmo, California

  • In February of 1977, George Lucas invited some of his closest friends to watch a rough cut of his new film:

  • Star Wars.

  • In attendance among a handful of people were Steven Spielberg and Brian De Palma.

  • The response was-

  • -not good. According to Spielberg, this is how De Palma reacted:

  • "Well, Brian went off the deep end."

  • "WHAT???!!! MAKES NO SENSE! NONSENSE!"

  • The film was in trouble.

  • Sure, you can point at the superficial problems with the rough cut.

  • Such as, placeholder VFX,

  • stock footage,

  • unfinished sound,

  • and temp music.

  • But, we're not gonna focus on those.

  • No, the real issues were fundamental: the story, the scenes, the characters, the pacing

  • But the film was not beyond saving, because they say a film is written three times:

  • first, in the screenplay,

  • next, in production

  • "You can't win, Darth.

  • If my blade should find its mark, you will cease to exist."

  • and finally, in the edit.

  • "You can't win Darth.

  • If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine."

  • The success of Star Wars was not inevitable.

  • In fact, the way things were going, it was almost guaranteed to fail.

  • It was only due to their laborious editorial process that Star Wars snatched victory from the jaws of defeat.

  • So Lucas turned to his ingenious editing team: Richard Chew, Paul Hirsch,

  • arguably one of George's greatest collaborators: his wife at the time, Marcia Lucas.

  • Their job was to rebuild a bloated first act, cut tons of unnecessary material,

  • create clarity, tension, and drama in places that had none,

  • and restructure scenes and entire sequences to propel the story forward.

  • Basically, they just had to start from scratch.

  • In this video, we'll compare and contrast these changes from rough to final cut

  • Using references from the script, recovered deleted scenes, and behind the scenes interviews

  • in order to demonstrate just how powerful editing is

  • as a storytelling tool.

  • So, without further redo, let's go back and examine how Star Wars

  • was saved in the edit.

  • The film always began with the famous opening crawl.

  • However, the text itself in earlier drafts was long.

  • Really long.

  • And it bombarded the audience with information. Especially for a first-time viewer.

  • It talked about the Republic Galactica, the Jedi Knights, the Dark Lords of the Sith,

  • the Emperor, none of which will be immediately relevant to the story we're about to watch. It's just overloaded.

  • Remember Brian De Palma?

  • He was particularly brutal about the opening crawl. So, George enlisted him and Jay Cox to rewrite it.

  • And that's how we got the roll up we see today, which is straight to the point

  • There's a civil war between the Rebellion and the Empire, a Death Star,

  • stolen plans--and we're off.

  • Then we see an epic space battle. Star Destroyers chasing Princess Leia's ship and is quickly captured.

  • Storm troopers blast their way in.

  • There's a huge firefight.

  • So far so good. Everything was pretty much the same, up until this happens:

  • "Help, I think I'm melting! This is all your fault!"

  • A little awkward place for a joke, and then there's a scene transition to...

  • wherever this is?

  • And who the heck is that?

  • And what's he doing?

  • Hopefully, it's clear already that there's some problems with this.

  • They just interrupted the pacing of this epic space battle to cut to some rando kid and his robot.

  • This is really how they're gonna introduce their main character?

  • But it gets worse.

  • "C'mon, Treadwell!

  • Come on, get in gear!"

  • Cutting the deleted scene is one thing. However, the opening of the film intercut with luke constantly

  • So, let's break down Luke's introduction.

  • In the first cut of the film, they intercut with Luke three times before he eventually crosses paths with the droids at the Jawa auction.

  • Which, as we all know, is the first time we meet Luke in the final film.

  • "Luke? Luke!"

  • This scene was never intended to be Luke's introduction, but it works.

  • "Luke, tell uncle if he gets a translator be sure it speaks Bocce."

  • "Doesn't look like we have much of a choice, but I'll remind him."

  • Okay, so why were those scenes cut?

  • To put it simply, they're boring.

  • Nothing is happening and they prevent the story from progressing.

  • And to illustrate that, here's a quick breakdown of the events laid out in the rough cut.

  • We already saw the first scene, so now we're back on the ship.

  • We meet Darth Vader,

  • we see him kill a guy,

  • Leia gets captured,

  • and the droids escaped.

  • Then, they cut back to Luke.

  • We see him running,

  • running some more,

  • he meets his friend Biggs,

  • and they look up at the sky.

  • Then once again, they go from epic space fantasy,

  • to a kid spewing pointless exposition

  • Well, I'm serious the sandpeople been getting really crazy. They've even rated the outskirts of angkor thom

  • That's enough of that. We'll provide links below if you want to watch the whole thing okay?

  • So even if those scenes had been good

  • Which they're not in the making of Star Wars editor Paul Hirsch says quote in the first five minutes

  • We were hitting everybody with more information than they could handle there were too many storylines to keep straight the robots the Princess Vader

  • Luke so we simplified it by taking Luke out, and you don't introduce Luke until he actually becomes a part of the story.

  • okay, Let's go

  • Don't you think it's Hersh continues by stating quote it also made the planet they land on work as an alien place

  • Before by showing Luke on the planet there was no mystery. You knew the planet was inhabited by people

  • But now you don't know what you're gonna find the first characters you see the jawas

  • Which gives it a whole air of exotic mystery end quote now. We've seen how intercutting with Luke was completely unnecessary

  • Let's look at how intercutting was used to its fullest potential

  • Because how and when you intercut is very important?

  • The general pattern is that they intercut between what's going on with the droids and cut to the empire who's hunting ahead?

  • But for the first cut of the film you'll find that none of these scenes really seem to line up

  • So let's talk about five scenes in particular. The conference scene where Vader chokes a guy. - "I find your lack of faith disturbing."

  • The look sir droids scene. - "Look sir droids."

  • The Leia interrogation scene.

  • "We will discuss the location of your hidden rebel base."

  • The set the course for Alderaan scene.

  • "Set your course for Alderaan."

  • And the Vader vamping scene - "I want the rebels located and identified."

  • as it was written and first edited, here's where those scenes fell.

  • Just after R-2 and 3-PO are reunited

  • "R2-D2 it is you! It is you!"

  • They cut to the conference - "I find your lack of faith disturbing"

  • Then Owen asks Beru

  • "Have you seen Luke this morning?"

  • Then they cut to-

  • Troy Luke and obi-wan talk in the house the force is what gives a Jedi his paw cut to the interrogation

  • location or hidden

  • Luke discovers his murdered family

  • Set the course to Alderaan the Jabba the Hutt scene full of traffic next time you want to talk to me come see me yourself

  • Which we'll talk about more later followed by the Vader vamping scene in

  • This current form the Imperial scenes sort of feel thrown in at random, which creates several problems

  • But let me show you the final order, and then we'll go through it scene by scene okay

  • So here's where the editors made the biggest structural changes

  • The underlying lesson here is how an editor is responsible for controlling the flow of

  • Information how one scene should lead into the next based on what the audience knows up to that point?

  • In the final assembly after R2 and 3PO are reunited they cut to this

  • Which is telling the audience automatically that these characters are still in immediate danger?

  • As opposed to cutting to the conference scene where you're giving a whole slew of

  • Exposition about things that don't seem to be related at all to what's going on the last

  • Remnants of the Old Republic have been swept away another problem about keeping the conference scene here

  • Is that this would become the audience's first introduction to the force the ability to destroy a planet is insignificant?

  • Next to the power of a force instead of hearing about it from obi-wan the force is what gives a Jedi his path

  • It's an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us and penetrates us it binds the Galaxy together

  • So by reshuffling these Imperial scenes we get immediate payoffs to the scenes that preceded those

  • So now the conference comes after we meet obi-wan where we learn Vader was seduced by the dark side of the force

  • Then we see then I find your lack of faith disturbing

  • Vader

  • as you wish

  • We also learned that r2 has the stolen plans to the Death Star

  • I have placed information vital to the survival of the rebellion into the memory systems of this r2 unit

  • Followed by the plans you refer to will soon be back in our hands

  • By moving this one scene here the other scenes naturally fell into place when Luke discovers his murdered family

  • Instead of seeing set the course to Alderaan they now reinforce that The Princess and the rebellion are in danger

  • And it's not until after Luke and obi-wan meet han Solo Chewie here tells me you're looking for passage to the Alderaan system

  • That we find out the Empire's going to the same place. She'll also alter that well

  • Okay, so what about the Jabba and Vader scenes?

  • well

  • You don't need them both were cut from the released version because all they do is repeat the same information the audience already knows

  • we already know this I want the

  • Located in identifying at any information that we would have got from the java scene was passed on the Greedo

  • They did this by dubbing Greedo with an alien language and adding subtitles

  • Java in Chico

  • But as we all know George Lucas went back and added this scene back in

  • twice

  • But the film worked fine without it so to quickly recap

  • We've seen how these editors have cut material will always be the base for more than hand

  • We've seen how they've intercut and restructured. What was already there

  • Now let's take a look at some of the more nuanced edits

  • Fine-tuned Star Wars made tons of subtle changes leading up to its release so I might not get to all of them

  • But I'll highlight a few ok they remove these rear projection shots of the land speeder because they look terrible

  • Instead they dubbed in dialogue over this wide shot look at there's a droid on the scanner

  • When the stormtroopers are searching the town originally it wasn't revealed that the droids were behind the door until the very end

  • But there was no suspense that way so in the Edit

  • They reversed this shot of the door opening and added in this line lock the door r2

  • Alright check this side of the street

  • It's a small thing again, but every moment helps

  • Then there's the scene in Obi Wan's house originally the scene started with Luke and obi-wan watching the princesses message

  • Then they play with lightsabers, and then they consider to go help her

  • Luke she's a child

  • But upon viewing as they described in the making of Star Wars

  • This seemed a bit heartless because of the lag between her plea and their decision to fly in rescue her

  • So the scene was rieta today, though

  • They had already been talking about Luke's dad in the force the father's lightsaber

  • Then they see the hologram and then they consider to help her to smooth over the Senate they cut to an insert of r2 beeping

  • And it wasn't until the editors had heard Ben Burtt sound design for art too that they started cutting to the droid for more reaction

  • Shots this same shot of r2 was used in two scenes when our two plays hollow chess now be careful r2

  • And for that little awkward moment we saw at the beginning

  • Which was later moved to after the TIE fighter battle as a way to relieve the tension by showing c-3po looks stupid

  • This shot of the heroes buckling their seatbelts was originally put right before the falcon jumps to Lightspeed

  • But again it's kind of anticlimactic there

  • So they decided to move it earlier when they're first getting pursued to amp up the intensity of this chase

  • Once they were on the Deathstar there was another problem

  • Some viewers had trouble understanding that obi-wan was going to shut down the tractor beam so they could escape so the editors added in this

  • exposition in using inserts in voiceover the tractor beam is coupled to the main reactor in seven locations a

  • Power loss at one of the terminals with allow the ship to leave

  • They also shot this insert for clarity

  • It's also weird to me that in the special edition

  • Lucas made this insert less helpful by translating the text to a fake Star Wars language, but whatever okay last?

  • But not least there's one more very large structural change that occurred in the Edit and that of course was the entire finale

  • This entire sequence is truly breathtaking and it's a remarkable feat of editing, but it took a lot of work to get it there

  • As it was originally written in cut the Battle of Yemen went something like this

  • Golde leader does a pass he gets destroyed

  • Then red leader doesn't run

  • Just hits the surface

  • then loop doesn't run and

  • Also fails and Luke does another run

  • And finally succeeds kaboom. Good job

  • But here's the big difference in that version the Death Star wasn't about to destroy the rebel base

  • I'll say that again the Death Star was not about to destroy the rebel base

  • It was literally just sitting there waiting to be blown up. This is where Marshall Lucas came in the first thing

  • She did was recut the trench run basically from the ground up this included removing Luke's first run, but also more importantly

  • Incorporating the idea that the Death Star was about to blow up the rebel base. If you pay close attention

  • You'll notice that every single piece of footage that has to do with this idea is being delivered with off-screen dialogue over inserts

  • Or by reusing footage from other scenes

  • Like this shot here, I could safely assume that this was reused from the previous scene when they arrived at Alderaan

  • We've entered the Alderaan system for a first-time viewer. You would never know the difference and as Marshall Lucas puts

  • It it was all editorially manufactured, so why is this so important just think about it

  • You may fire when ready if there's no threat to the rebels then there's no joy in the victory

  • Essentially they just went and killed a bunch of people

  • Which they did but now it's a fight for their own survival

  • So there you have it

  • huh

  • Okay

  • The intent of this video was never to dwell on the fact that George Lucas went back and made changes to the original trilogy

  • because Star Wars fans are so hardcore that they've restored the theatrical versions themselves and

  • It was this version of the film that received the Academy Award for Best editing the winners are Paul Hirsch

  • Marshall Lucas and Richard Childress Star Wars along with Ben Burtt for his amazing sound design

  • ILM for their groundbreaking visual effects

  • and John Williams for his incredible original score

  • Every step of post-production on Star Wars reflected a revolutionary commitment to the craft every frame every

  • Sound efficient every piece of dial Yosh the Foss lope was given an intense level of consideration

  • Looking at how they refine the film through alumnus craftsmanship should be a lesson to us all

  • Do I think George Lucas made tons of unnecessary changes

  • Yes, I do

  • But for whatever reason he's continued to go back and re-edit these films. He said quote. I really enjoy editing the most

  • It's the part. I have the most control over. It's the part. I can deal with the easiest it's the part