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    Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope

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    Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope

    Mesaj  Kaliope la data de Vin Feb 08, 2008 2:26 pm

    Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (originally released as Star Wars) is a 1977 space opera film, produced, written, and directed by George Lucas. It was the first of six films released in the Star Wars saga; two subsequent films continue the story set while three others act as prequels. Ground-breaking in its use of special effects, this first Star Wars movie is one of the most successful films of all time and generally considered one of the most influential as well.
    Set far in the past, the movie tells the story of a plot against an oppressive Galactic Empire by a group of freedom fighters known as the Rebel Alliance. Seeking to make their authority absolute the Empire has recently completed its ultimate weapon: the Death Star, a moon-sized battle station capable of destroying a planet. Even so, spies have managed to obtain schematic plans of the station in the hope of finding a weakness. Rebel Leader Princess Leia Organa is racing to transport these plans to the rebel base when her ship is attacked and she and the crew are captured by Imperial forces. In a desperate attempt to complete her mission, Leia hides the plans within one of her two servant androids and records a quick message to former military general and rebel sympathizer: Obi-Wan Kenobi. Explaining her circumstances she begs Kenobi see that the plans are delivered safely to the base. The androids are then launched, in an escape pod, to Obi-Wan's home planet of Tatooine, where they come into the possession of teenaged farmer, Luke Skywalker. The secret message is soon discovered and Skywalker sets off to locate Kenobi and find a way to help the Princess.
    Inspired by films like the Flash Gordon serials and the samurai films of Akira Kurosawa, as well as such critical works as Joseph Campbell's The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Lucas began work on Star Wars in 1974. Produced with a budget of US$11,000,000 and released on May 25, 1977, the film became one of the most successful of all time, earning $460 million in the United States and $337 million overseas, as well as receiving several film awards, including 10 Academy Award nominations. It was re-released several times, sometimes with significant changes; the most notable versions were the 1997 Special Edition and the 2004 DVD, which were modified with CGI effects and recreated scenes
    Plot
    An opening crawl reveals that the galaxy is in a state of civil war. The Rebel Alliance has stolen plans to the Galactic Empire's Death Star, a space station capable of annihilating a planet. Princess Leia Organa of Alderaan has possession of the plans, and before she is captured by the Empire, she hides them, along with a holographic recording, in a "droid" named R2-D2. The small droid escapes with his humanoid partner C-3PO to the surface of the desert planet Tatooine below. On Tatooine, the droids are captured by Jawas, who sell them to moisture farmer Owen Lars and his nephew, Luke Skywalker. While Luke cleans R2-D2, he accidentally triggers part of a holographic message, in which Princess Leia requests the help of "Obi-Wan Kenobi". The only Kenobi he knows is Ben Kenobi, a hermit who lives in the nearby hills, but Uncle Owen dismisses any connection.
    Later, R2-D2 escapes, looking for Obi-Wan. This causes Luke and C-3PO to go out after him. Luke is attacked by Tusken Raiders (or Sand People) and knocked unconscious. He is saved by the "old wizard" Ben Kenobi, who reveals himself to be Obi-Wan. He takes them back to his hut and tells of his days as a Jedi Knight, and explains to Luke about a mysterious energy field called "the Force". He also tells Luke about his father, Anakin Skywalker, gives him his father's lightsaber, and tells him that Anakin had been "betrayed and murdered" by Obi-Wan's former pupil, Darth Vader. Obi-Wan then views Princess Leia's message, in which she begs him to take R2-D2 and the Death Star plans to Alderaan, where her father will be able to retrieve and analyze them. Obi-Wan asks Luke to accompany him to Alderaan and to learn the ways of the Force. After discovering that his home has been destroyed and his aunt and uncle killed by Imperial stormtroopers, Luke agrees to go with Obi-Wan to Alderaan, and to learn to become a Jedi like his father. At the seedy Mos Eisley Spaceport, the group finds a smuggler named Han Solo and his Wookie friend Chewbacca, who agree to transport them on their ship, the Millennium Falcon. Attacked by stormtroopers as they board the ship, they make a hasty escape and prepare for a hyperspace leap to Alderaan.
    Meanwhile, Leia has been imprisoned on the Death Star and has resisted interrogation. Grand Moff Tarkin, the Death Star's commanding officer, destroys her home planet of Alderaan as a means of demonstrating the power of the Empire's new weapon. The planet's destruction is felt by Obi-Wan aboard the Millennium Falcon while he is instructing Luke about the Force. Arriving at the coordinates for the planet, they are bombarded instead by rubble from the explosion. Following a TIE Fighter toward what appears to be a small moon, they are captured by the Death Star's tractor beam. Using hidden compartments to surprise Imperial stormtroopers and donning their armor as disguises, Han and Luke escape to a command room to wait while Obi-Wan attempts to disable the tractor beam. While they are there, R2-D2 discovers that Princess Leia is scheduled for termination. Han and Luke stage a rescue on the cell block but their escape route is cut off and they are forced down a garbage chute into a compactor. About to be crushed by the walls closing in, they are saved by the droid's last-second shutdown of the compactor. Making their way back to the Millennium Falcon, their path is cleared by the spectacle of a lightsaber duel between Darth Vader and his former master, Obi-Wan Kenobi. Warning the Dark Lord that he will become "more powerful than you can possibly imagine," the old Jedi allows himself to be struck down as the others escape toward a hidden rebel base. A beacon hidden aboard the ship allows the Empire to track their route.
    After landing on Yavin IV, the Death Star plans are analyzed by the Rebel Alliance and a potential weakness is found, one which will require the use of single-man fighters to slip past the Death Star's formidable defenses. Luke joins the assault team while Han collects his reward for the Princess' rescue. The attack proceeds as planned but suffers heavy losses without a successful torpedo hit in the small thermal exhaust port which would create a chain reaction. During Luke's run, Darth Vader engages the Rebels in ship-to-ship combat, but before he can destroy Luke, the Milennium Falcon appears and destroys one of Vader's wingmen while the other wingman shouts "Look out!" and attempts to veer away from the Falcon but instead veers into Vader's fighter and is destroyed crashing into the trench wall. Vader is last seen spinning out of control into outer space. Guided by the voice of Obi-Wan to "use the Force," Luke shuts off his targeting computer and fires the successful shot which destroys the Death Star seconds before it could attack the Rebel base. At a grand ceremony, Princess Leia awards medals to Luke and Han for their heroism in the battle.Cast

    • Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker. Skywalker is a young man who lives with his aunt and uncle on a remote planet and who dreams of something greater than his current position in life.
    • Harrison Ford as Han Solo. Solo is a self-centered smuggler whom Obi-Wan and Luke meet in a cantina and with whom they later travel. Solo, who owns the ship Millennium Falcon, is good friends with Chewbacca, the ship's co-pilot.
    • Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia Organa. Organa is a member of the Imperial Senate and a leader of the Rebel Alliance. She plans to use the stolen Death Star plans to find the station's weakness.
    • Alec Guinness as Obi-Wan "Ben" Kenobi. Kenobi is an aging man who served as a Jedi Master during the Clone Wars. Early in the film, Kenobi introduces Luke to the Force.
    • David Prowse as Darth Vader. Vader is a Dark Lord of the Sith, and a prominent figure in the Galactic Empire who hopes to destroy the Rebel Alliance. He was Obi-Wan's apprentice before turning to the dark side of the Force. He was voiced by James Earl Jones.
    • Anthony Daniels as C-3PO. C-3PO is an interpreter droid who falls into the hands of Luke Skywalker. He is rarely without his counterpart droid, R2-D2.
    • Kenny Baker as R2-D2. R2-D2 is a mechanic droid who also falls into the hands of Luke. He is carrying a secret message for Obi-Wan Kenobi.
    • Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca. Chewbacca is the Wookiee co-pilot of the Millennium Falcon and a close friend of Han Solo.
    • Peter Cushing as Grand Moff Tarkin. Tarkin is the commander of the Death Star and a Regional Governor. He leads the search for the Rebel Base, hoping to destroy it.
    • Denis Lawson as Wedge Antilles. Antilles is a starfighter pilot who fights with Luke in the Battle of Yavin. In the ending credits, Lawson's first name is misspelled "Dennis."

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    Re: Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope

    Mesaj  Kaliope la data de Vin Feb 08, 2008 2:41 pm

    Lucas shared a joint casting session with long-time friend Brian De Palma, who was casting his own film Carrie. As a result, Carrie Fisher and Sissy Spacek auditioned for both films in each other's respective roles.[1] Lucas favored casting young actors without long-time experience. While reading for Luke Skywalker (then known as "Luke Starkiller"), Hamill found the dialogue to be extremely odd because of its universe-embedded concepts. He chose to simply read it sincerely and was selected instead of William Katt, who was subsequently cast in Carrie.[2][3][4] Lucas initially rejected the idea of using Harrison Ford, as he had previously worked with him on American Graffiti, and instead asked Ford to assist in the auditions by reading lines with the other actors and explaining the concepts and history behind the scenes that they were reading. Lucas was eventually won over by Ford's portrayal and cast him instead of Kurt Russell, Nick Nolte,[4] Christopher Walken, Billy Dee Williams and Perry King.[1][5][2] Virtually every young actress in Hollywood auditioned for the role of Princess Leia, including Terri Nunn,[6] Jodie Foster[1] and Cindy Williams.[2] Carrie Fisher was cast under the condition that she lose 10 pounds of weight for the role. Aware that the studio disagreed with his refusal to cast big-name stars, Lucas signed veteran stage and screen actor Alec Guinness as Obi-Wan Kenobi.[2]
    Additional casting took place in London, where Mayhew was cast as Chewbacca after he stood up to greet Lucas. Lucas immediately turned to Gary Kurtz, and requested that Mayhew be cast.[7] Daniels auditioned for and was cast as C-3PO after he saw a McQuarrie drawing of the character; struck by the vulnerability in the robot's face, he instantly wanted to help to bring the character to life.[2][8]

    Production


    During post-production on his previous film, American Graffiti, Lucas repeatedly discussed the concept of a "space opera" with producer Gary Kurtz.[2] In May 1973, Lucas had prepared a 14-page story outline for distribution among film studios. Because of its outer space setting, the story was viewed as science fiction, an unpopular genre at the box office. Lucas later proposed that terms like "space fantasy" or "science fantasy" better fit the story.[2] He brought the outline to Universal Studios and United Artists; both rejected the project. Lucas disliked the studio system because his previous two films, American Graffiti and THX 1138, had been re-edited without his consent.[9] Still, aware that studios were unavoidable, he pursued Alan Ladd, Jr., the head of 20th Century Fox. Although Ladd did not grasp the technical side of the project, he believed that Lucas was talented. Lucas later stated that Ladd "invested in me, he did not invest in the movie."[2]
    Lucas finished a draft of the screenplay in May 1974. As the draft developed, the characters evolved significantly. Early in development, Luke Skywalker's character changed from a 60-year-old general to a member of a family of dwarfs;[2][10] the Corellian smuggler, Han Solo, was envisioned as a large, green-skinned monster with gills.[10] Chewbacca was inspired by Lucas' Alaskan malamute dog, Indiana, who often acted as the director's "co-pilot" by sitting in the passenger seat of his car.[10] The Force, a mysterious energy field, was initially conceived as the Kyber crystal, a "galactic holy grail."[11][2] The completed script was too long for one movie; however, Lucas refused to condense it. Instead, he expanded the first third of it into one movie and left the rest for two future films, effectively creating the original Star Wars trilogy.[12][2]
    Lucas hired conceptual artist Ralph McQuarrie to create paintings of certain scenes during screenwriting. When Lucas delivered his screenplay to the studio, he included several of McQuarrie's paintings.[13] 20th Century Fox approved a budget of $8,250,000; American Graffiti's positive reviews allowed Lucas to renegotiate his deal with Alan Ladd, Jr. and request the sequel rights to the film. For Lucas, this deal protected Star Wars' unwritten segments and most of the merchandising profits.[2][14]
    In 1975, Lucas founded the visual effects company Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) after discovering that 20th Century Fox's visual effects department had been disbanded. ILM began its work on Star Wars in a warehouse in Van Nuys, California. Most of the visual effects used motion control photography, which creates the illusion of size by employing small models and slowly moving cameras. Model spaceships were constructed on the basis of drawings by Joe Johnston, input from Lucas, and paintings by McQuarrie. Lucas opted to abandon the traditional sleekness of science fiction by creating a "used universe" in which all devices, ships, and buildings looked aged and dirty
    When filming began on March 22, 1976 in the Tunisian desert for the scenes on the planet Tatooine,[17] the project faced several problems.[18] Lucas fell behind schedule in the first week of shooting due to a rare Tunisian rainstorm, malfunctioning props, and electronic breakdowns.[19] When actor Anthony Daniels wore the C-3PO outfit for the first time, the left leg piece shattered down through the plastic covering his left foot, stabbing him. After completing filming in Tunisia, production moved into the more controlled environment of Elstree Studios, near London.[19] However, significant problems, such as a crew that had little interest in the film, still arose.[2][19] Most of the crew considered the project a "children's film," rarely took their work seriously, and often found it unintentionally humorous.[20] Actor Kenny Baker later confessed that he thought the film would be a failure. Harrison Ford found the film "weird," in that there was a Princess with buns for hair and what he called a "giant in a monkey suit" named Chewbacca. Ford also found the dialogue difficult, saying "You can type this shit, George, but you sure can't say it."[21]
    Lucas clashed with Director of Photography Gilbert Taylor, whom producer Gary Kurtz called "old-school" and "crotchety."[2] Moreover, with a background in independent filmmaking, Lucas was accustomed to creating most of the elements of the film himself. His camera suggestions were rejected by an offended Taylor, who felt that Lucas was over-stepping his boundaries by giving specific instructions. Lucas eventually became frustrated that the costumes, sets and other elements were not living up to his original vision of Star Wars. He rarely spoke to the actors, who felt that he expected too much of them while providing little direction. His directions to the actors usually consisted of the words "faster" and "more intense."[2]
    Ladd offered Lucas some of the only support from the studio; he dealt with scrutiny from board members over the rising budget and complex screenplay drafts. After production fell two weeks behind schedule, Ladd told Lucas that he had to finish production within a week or he would be forced to shut down production. The crew split into three units, led by Lucas, Kurtz, and production supervisor Robert Watts, respectively. Under the new system, the project met the studio's deadline.[2][19]
    During production, the cast attempted to make Lucas laugh or smile as he often appeared depressed. At one point, the project became so demanding that Lucas was diagnosed with hypertension and exhaustion and was warned to reduce his stress level.[2][19] Post-production was equally stressful due to increasing pressure from 20th Century Fox. Moreover, Mark Hamill's face was injured in a car accident, which made reshoots impossible.[19]
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    Re: Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope

    Mesaj  Kaliope la data de Vin Feb 08, 2008 2:43 pm

    Star Wars was originally slated for release in Christmas 1976; however, delays pushed the film's release to Summer 1977. Already anxious about meeting his deadline, Lucas was shocked when his editor's first cut of the film was a "complete disaster." After attempting to persuade the original editor to cut the film his way, Lucas replaced the editor with Paul Hirsch and Richard Chew. He also allowed his then-wife Marcia Lucas to aid the editing process while she was cutting the film New York, New York with Lucas' friend Martin Scorsese. Richard Chew found the film had an unenergetic pace; it had been cut in a by-the-book manner: scenes were played out in master shots that flowed into close-up coverage. He found that the pace was dictated by the actors instead of the cuts. Hirsch and Chew worked on two reels simultaneously; whoever finished first moved on to the next.[2]
    Meanwhile, Industrial Light & Magic was struggling to achieve unprecedented special effects. The company had spent half of its budget on four shots that Lucas deemed unacceptable.[19] Moreover, theories surfaced that the workers at ILM lacked discipline, forcing Lucas to intervene frequently to ensure that they were on schedule.[2] With hundreds of uncompleted shots remaining, ILM was forced to finish a year's work in six months. Lucas inspired ILM by editing together aerial dogfights from old war films, which enhanced the pacing of the scenes.[2]
    During the chaos of production and post-production, the team made decisions about character voicing and sound effects. Sound designer Ben Burtt had created a library of sounds that Lucas referred to as an "organic soundtrack." For Chewbacca's growls, Burtt recorded and combined sounds made by dogs, bears, lions, tigers, and walruses to create phrases and sentences. Lucas and Burtt created the robotic voice of R2-D2 by filtering their voices through an electronic synthesizer. Darth Vader's breathing was achieved by Burtt breathing through the mask of a scuba tank implanted with a microphone.[22] Lucas never intended to use the voice of David Prowse, who portrayed Darth Vader in costume, because of Prowse's English West Country accent. He originally wanted Orson Welles to speak for Darth Vader. However, he felt that Welles' voice would be too recognizable, so he cast the lesser-known James Earl Jones.[23] Nor did Lucas intend to use Anthony Daniels' voice for C-3PO. Thirty well-established voice actors, such as Stan Freberg, read for the voice of the droid. According to Daniels, one of the major voice actors, believed by some sources to be Stan Freberg, recommended Daniels' voice for the role.[2][10]
    When Lucas screened an early cut of the film for his friends, among them directors Brian De Palma, John Milius and Steven Spielberg, their reactions were disappointing. Spielberg, who claimed to have been the only person in the audience to have enjoyed the film,[2] believed that the lack of enthusiasm was due to the absence of finished special effects. Lucas later said that the group was honest and seemed bemused by the film. In contrast, Alan Ladd, Jr. and the rest of 20th Century Fox loved the film; one of the executives, Gareth Wigan, told Lucas, "This is the greatest film I've ever seen," and cried during the screening. Lucas found the experience shocking and rewarding, having never gained any approval from studio executives before.[2] Although the delays increased the budget from $8 million to $11 million, the film was still the least expensive of the Star Wars saga.
    Releases
    Charles Lippincott was hired by Lucas' production company, Lucasfilm Ltd., as marketing director for Star Wars. Because 20th Century Fox gave little support for marketing beyond licensing T-shirts and posters, Lippincott was forced to look elsewhere. He secured deals with Stan Lee, Roy Thomas and Marvel Comics for a comic book adaptation and with Del Rey Books for a novelization. Wary that Star Wars would be beaten out by other summer films, such as Smokey and the Bandit, 20th Century Fox moved the release date to Wednesday before Memorial Day: May 25, 1977. However, few theaters ordered the film to be shown. In response, 20th Century Fox demanded that theaters order Star Wars if they wanted an eagerly anticipated film based on a best-selling novel titled The Other Side of Midnight.[2]
    The film became an instant success; within three weeks of the film's release, 20th Century Fox's stock price doubled to a record high. Before 1977, 20th Century Fox's greatest annual profits were $37,000,000; in 1977, the company earned $79,000,000. Although the film's cultural neutrality helped it to gain international success, Ladd became anxious during the premiere in Japan. After the screening, the audience was silent, leading Ladd, Jr. to fear that the film would be unsuccessful. He was later told that, in Japan, silence was the greatest honor to a film. Meanwhile, thousands of people attended the ceremony at Grauman's Chinese Theatre, where C-3PO, R2-D2 and Darth Vader placed their footprints in the theater's forecourt.[2] Although Star Wars merchandise was available to enthusiastic children upon release, only Kenner Toys—who believed that the film would be unsuccessful—had accepted Lippincott's licensing offers. Kenner responded to the sudden demand for toys by selling boxed vouchers in its "empty box" Christmas campaign; these vouchers could be redeemed for the toys in March 1978.[2]
    In 1978, at the height of the film's popularity, Smith-Hemion Productions approached Lucas with the idea of The Star Wars Holiday Special. The end result is often considered a failure; Lucas himself disowned it.[24] Lucas entered into a wager with long-time friend Steven Spielberg during the production of Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Lucas was sure Close Encounters would outperform the yet-to-be-released Star Wars at the box office and bet 2.5% of the proceeds of each film against each other. Lucas lost the bet, of course, and to this day Spielberg is still receiving proceeds from the first of the Star Wars movies.[25]
    The film was originally released as—and consequently often called—Star Wars, without Episode IV or the subtitle A New Hope. The 1980 sequel, Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, featured an episode number and subtitle in the opening crawl. When the original film was re-released in 1981, Episode IV: A New Hope was added above the original opening crawl. Although Lucas claims that only six films were ever planned, representatives of Lucasfilm discussed plans for nine or 12 possible films in early interviews.[26] The film was re-released theatrically in 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, and 1997.

    Special Edition


    After ILM used computer generated effects for Steven Spielberg's Jurassic Park, Lucas concluded that digital technology had caught up to his original vision for Star Wars.[2] As part of Star Wars' 20th Anniversary celebration in 1997, A New Hope was digitally remastered and re-released to theatres, along with The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, under the campaign title The Star Wars Trilogy: Special Edition. The Special Edition versions contained visual shots and scenes that were unachievable in the original release due to financial, technological, and time restraints; one such scene involved a meeting between Han Solo and Jabba the Hutt.[2] Although most changes were minor or cosmetic in nature, some fans believe that Lucas degraded the movie with the additions.[27] For instance, a particularly controversial change in which a bounty hunter named Greedo shoots first when confronting Han Solo has inspired T-shirts brandishing the phrase "Han Shot First."[28]

    DVD release


    A New Hope was released on DVD on September 21, 2004 in a box set with The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, and a bonus disc of supplemental material. The movies were digitally restored and remastered, and more changes were made by George Lucas.
    The DVD features a commentary track from George Lucas, Ben Burtt, Dennis Muren, and Carrie Fisher. The bonus disc contains the documentary Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy, three featurettes, teaser and theatrical trailers, TV spots, still galleries, an exclusive preview of Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, a playable Xbox demo of the LucasArts game Star Wars Battlefront, and a "Making Of" documentary on the Episode III video game. The set was reissued in December 2005 as part of a three-disc "limited edition" boxed set without the bonus disc.
    The trilogy was re-released on separate two-disc Limited Edition DVD sets from September 12 to December 31, 2006; the original versions of the films were added as bonus material. Controversy surrounded the release because the unaltered versions were from the 1993 non-anamorphic Laserdisc masters, and were not retransferred with modern video standards
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    Re: Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope

    Mesaj  Kaliope la data de Vin Feb 08, 2008 2:47 pm

    Reaction
    Star Wars debuted on May 25, 1977 in 32 theaters, and proceeded to break house records, effectively becoming one of the first blockbuster films.[30] It remains one of the most financially successful films of all time. Some of the cast and crew noted lines of people stretching around theaters as they drove by. Even technical crew members, such as model makers, were asked for autographs, and cast members became instant household names.[2] The film's original total U.S. gross came to $307,263,857, and it earned $6,806,951 during its first weekend in wide release. Lucas claimed that he had spent most of the release day in a sound studio in Los Angeles. When he went out for lunch with his then-wife Marcia, they encountered a long queue of people along the sidewalks leading to Mann's Chinese Theatre, waiting to see Star Wars.[19] The film became the highest-grossing film of 1977 and the highest-grossing film of all time until E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial broke that record in 1982. (With subsequent rereleases, Star Wars reclaimed the title, but lost it again to James Cameron's 1997 blockbuster Titanic.) The film earned $797,900,000 worldwide, making it the first film to reach the $300 million mark.[31] Adjusted for inflation it is the second highest grossing movie of all time in the United States, behind Gone with the Wind.[32]
    In a 1977 review, Roger Ebert called the film "an out-of-body experience," compared its special effects to those of 2001: A Space Odyssey, and opined that the true strength of the film was its "pure narrative."[33] Vincent Canby called the film "the movie that's going to entertain a lot of contemporary folk who have a soft spot for the virtually ritualized manners of comic-book adventure."[34] Pauline Kael of The New Yorker criticized the film, stating that "there's no breather in the picture, no lyricism," and that it had no "emotional grip."[35] Jonathon Rosenbaum of the Chicago Reader stated, "None of these characters has any depth, and they're all treated like the fanciful props and settings!"[36] Peter Keough of the Boston Phoenix said "Star Wars is a junkyard of cinematic gimcracks not unlike the Jawas' heap of purloined, discarded, barely functioning droids."[37] Stanley Kauffmann of The New Republic also responded negatively, noting, "His work here seems less inventive than in THX 1138."[38] According to rottentomatoes.com, of the 54 critical reviews of the film provided on that site, 51 responded favorably (95% of the reviewers), stating in consensus that "the action and special effects are first rate."[38]
    In 1989, the U.S. National Film Registry of the Library of Congress selected the film as a "culturally, historically, or aesthetically important" film.[39] In 2006, Lucas' original screenplay was selected by the Writers Guild of America as the 68th greatest of all time.[40] The American Film Institute (or AFI) listed it 15th on a list of the top 100 films of the 20th century;[41] in the UK, a poll created by Channel Four named A New Hope (together with its successor, The Empire Strikes Back) the greatest film of all time.[42] The American Film Institute has named Star Wars and specific elements of it to several of its "top 100 lists" of American cinema, compiled as a part of the Institute's 100th anniversary celebration. These include the 27th most thrilling American film of all time;[43] the thirty-ninth most inspirational American film of all-time;[44] Han Solo as the fourteenth greatest American film hero of all time and Obi-Wan Kenobi thirty-seventh on the same list.[45] The often repeated line "May the Force be with you" was ranked as the 8th greatest quote in American film history.[46] John Williams' score was ranked as the greatest American film score of all time.[47]



    Star Wars won several awards at the 50th Annual Academy Awards, including Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, which went to John Barry, Norman Reynolds, Leslie Dilley and Roger Christian. Best Costume Design was awarded to John Mollo; Best Film Editing went to Paul Hirsch, Marcia Lucas and Richard Chew; John Stears, John Dykstra, Richard Edlund, Grant McCune and Robert Blalack all received awards for Best Effects, Visual Effects. John Williams was awarded his third Oscar for Best Music, Original Score; the Best Sound went to Don MacDougall, Ray West, Bob Minkler and Derek Ball; and a Special Achievement for Sound Effects went to Ben Burtt. Additional nominations included Alec Guinness for Best Actor in a Supporting Role, George Lucas for Best Screenplay and Best Director, although it did not win Best Picture, which went to Annie Hall.[48] At the Golden Globe awards, the film was nominated for Best Motion Picture - Drama, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor (Alec Guinness), and Best Score. It only won the award for Best Score.[48] It received six BAFTA nominations: Best Film, Best Editing, Best Costume, Best Production/Art Design, Best Sound, and Best Score; the film won in the latter two categories.[48] John Williams' soundtrack album won the Grammy award for Best Album of an original score for a motion picture or television program,[48] and the film was awarded the Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation.[48] In 1997, the MTV Movie Awards awarded Chewbacca the lifetime achievement award for his work in the Star Wars trilogy.[48] Star Wars has also been the subject of many parodies, including South Park and Family Guy.





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    Re: Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope

    Mesaj  Kaliope la data de Vin Feb 08, 2008 3:04 pm

    Pop culture homages

    • In the 1983 movie WarGames, David Lightman, the hero of the story, states the famed "I have you now!" quote uttered by Darth Vader.


    Cinematic influence


    Star Wars has influenced many films and filmmakers since its release.[49] It began a new generation of special effects and high-energy motion pictures. The film was one of the first films to link genres—such as space opera and soap opera—together to invent a new, high-concept genre for filmmakers to build upon.[49][15] Finally, it shifted the film industry's focus away from personal filmmaking of the 1970s and towards big-budget blockbusters for younger audiences.[49][2]
    Actor Michael Shanks cited Star Wars as an influence on many battle scenes from the television series Stargate SG-1, namely "Fallen."[50] Joss Whedon's Serenity features several references: the spaceship Serenity, influenced by the Millennium Falcon; a "used future" where vehicles and culture are obviously dated; and clothing for its own evil empire.[51] After seeing Star Wars, director James Cameron quit his job as a truck driver to enter the film industry. Other filmmakers who have said to have been influenced by Star Wars include Peter Jackson, Ridley Scott, Dean Devlin, Roland Emmerich, Kevin Smith and John Singleton.[15] Scott, like Whedon, was influenced by the "used future" and extended the concept for his science fiction horror film Alien. Jackson used the concept for his production of the Lord of the Rings trilogy to add a sense of realism and believability.[15]
    Some critics have blamed Star Wars and also Jaws for "ruining" Hollywood by shifting its focus from "sophisticated" and "relevant" films such as The Godfather, Taxi Driver, and Annie Hall to films about "spectacle" and "juvenile fantasy."[52] Peter Biskind complained for the same reason: "When all was said and done, Lucas and Spielberg returned the 1970s audience, grown sophisticated on a diet of European and New Hollywood films, to the simplicities of the pre-1960s Golden Age of movies… They marched backward through the looking-glass."[53][52]

    Cinematic and literary allusions



    See also: Star Wars sources and analogues
    According to Lucas, the film was inspired by numerous sources, such as Beowulf and King Arthur for the origins of myth and world religions.[2] Lucas originally wanted to rely heavily on the 1930s Flash Gordon film serials; however, Lucas resorted to Akira Kurosawa's film The Hidden Fortress and Joseph Campbell's The Hero With a Thousand Faces because of copyright issues with Flash Gordon.[54][55] Star Wars features several parallels to Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon, such as the conflict between Rebels and Imperial Forces, the "wipes" between scenes, and the famous "opening crawl" that begins each film. A concept borrowed from Flash Gordon—a fusion of futuristic technology and traditional magic—was originally developed by one of the founders of science fiction, H.G. Wells. Wells believed the Industrial Revolution had quietly destroyed the idea that fairy-tale magic might be real. Thus, he found that plausibility was required to allow myth to work properly, and substituted elements of the Industrial Era: time machines instead of magic carpets, Martians instead of dragons, and scientists instead of wizards. Wells called his new genre "scientific fantasia."[56][57][58]
    Star Wars was influenced by the 1958 Kurosawa film The Hidden Fortress; for instance, the two bickering peasants evolved into C-3PO and R2-D2, and a Japanese family crest seen in the film is similar to the Imperial Crest. Star Wars borrows heavily from another Kurosawa film, Yojimbo. In both films, several men threaten the hero, bragging how wanted they are by authorities. The situation ends with an arm being cut off by a blade. Mifune is offered "twenty-five ryo now, twenty-five when you complete the mission." whereas Han Solo is offered "Two thousand now, plus fifteen when we reach Alderaan." Lucas' affection for Kurosawa may have influenced his decision to visit Japan in the early 1970s, leading some to believe he borrowed the name "Jedi" from jidaigeki (which in English means "period dramas," and refers to films typically featuring samurai).[59][58][60]
    Lucas also drew inspiration from J. R. R. Tolkien's fantasy series The Lord of the Rings. Obi-Wan Kenobi is similar to the Wizard Gandalf, albeit in differing fashions, and Darth Vader resembles the Witch-king of Angmar in that both are the chief servants of a higher evil power and dress in black. Luke watches the duel of Obi-Wan and Vader from across a chasm as Frodo witnessed the duel between Gandalf and the Balrog; both feature their respective blue and red melee weapons. There are numerous other similarities between the two works.[61]
    Tatooine is similar to Arrakis from Frank Herbert's book Dune. Arrakis is the only known source of a longevity drug called the Spice Melange; Han Solo is a spice smuggler who has been through the spice mines of Kessel. Lucas' original concept of the film dealt heavily with the transport of spice, although the nature of the material remained unexplored. In the conversation at Obi-Wan Kenobi's home between Obi-Wan and Luke, Luke expresses a belief that his father was a navigator on a spice freighter. Other similarities include those between Princess Leia and Princess Alia (pronounced /əˈliːə/), and between Jedi mind tricks and "The Voice," a controlling ability used by Bene Gesserit. In passing, Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru are "Moisture Farmers"; in Dune, Dew Collectors are used by Fremen to "provide a small but reliable source of water."[62][63] Frank Herbert says that, during production of the Dune film, he calculated the odds of points of similarity between Star Wars and Dune being a coincidence. The results came out as greater than the number of stars in the galaxy-to-one against.[64]
    The Death Star assault scene was modeled after the 1950s movie The Dam Busters, in which Royal Air Force Lancaster bombers fly along heavily defended reservoirs and aim "bouncing bombs" at their man-made dams to cripple the heavy industry of the Ruhr. Some of the dialogue in The Dam Busters is repeated in the A New Hope climax; Gilbert Taylor also filmed the special effects sequences in The Dam Busters.[65][60] In addition, the sequence was partially inspired by the climax of the film 633 Squadron directed by Walter Grauman.[66]
    The opening shot of Star Wars, in which a detailed spaceship fills the screen overhead, is a nod to the scene introducing the interplanetary spacecraft Discovery One in Stanley Kubrick's seminal 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey. The earlier big-budget science fiction film influenced the look of A New Hope in many other ways, including the use of EVA pods, hexagonal corridors, and primitive computer graphics. The Death Star has a docking bay reminiscent of the one on the orbiting space station in 2001.[67] The film also draws on The Wizard of Oz: similarities exist between Jawas and Munchkins, the main characters disguise themselves as enemy soldiers, and Obi-Wan dies, leaving only his empty robe in the same fashion as the Wicked Witch of the West.[68][69] Although golden and male, C-3PO is inspired by the robot Maria from Fritz Lang's 1927 film Metropolis. His whirring sounds were speculated to be inspired by the clanking noises of the Tin Woodsman in The Wizard of Oz.[70][71]

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    Re: Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope

    Mesaj  Kaliope la data de Vin Feb 08, 2008 3:05 pm

    Soundtrack



    On the recommendation of his friend Steven Spielberg, Lucas hired composer John Williams, who had worked with Spielberg on the film Jaws, for which he won an Academy Award. Lucas felt that the film would portray visually foreign worlds, but that the musical score would give the audience an emotional familiarity. In March 1977, Williams conducted the London Symphony Orchestra to record the Star Wars soundtrack in twelve days.[2]
    Lucas wanted a grand musical sound for Star Wars, with leitmotifs to provide distinction. Therefore, he assembled his favorite orchestral pieces for the soundtrack, until John Williams convinced him that an original score would be unique and more unified. However, a few of Williams pieces were influenced by the tracks given to him by Lucas. The "Main Title Theme" was inspired by the theme from the 1942 film King's Row, scored by Erich Wolfgang Korngold, and the track "Dune Sea of Tatooine" drew from the soundtrack from Bicycle Thieves, scored by Alessandro Cicognini.[54] The American Film Institute's list of best scores lists Star Wars' soundtrack at number one.

    Novelization





    The novelization of the film was published in December 1976, six months before the film was released. The credited author was George Lucas, but the book was revealed to have been ghostwritten by Alan Dean Foster, who later wrote the first Expanded Universe novel, Splinter of the Mind's Eye. The book was first published as Star Wars: From the Adventures of Luke Skywalker; later editions were titled simply Star Wars (1995) and, later, Star Wars: A New Hope (1997), to reflect the retitling of the film. Certain scenes deleted from the film (and later restored or archived in DVD bonus features) were always present in the novel (since it had been based on the screenplay), such as Luke at Tosche Station with Biggs and the encounter between Han and Jabba (referred to as "Jabba the Hut") in Docking Bay 94. Other deleted scenes from the movie, such as a close-up of a stormtrooper riding on a Dewback, were included in a photo insert added to later printings of the book.
    Smaller details were also different from the film version; for example, in the Death Star assault, Luke's callsign is Blue Five instead of Red Five as in the film. Charles Lippincott secured the deal with Del Rey Books to publish the novelization in November 1976. By February 1977, a half million copies had been sold.[2]

    Radio drama




    A radio drama adaptation of the film was written by Brian Daley, directed by John Madden, and produced for and broadcast on the American National Public Radio network in 1981. The adaptation received cooperation from George Lucas, who donated the rights to NPR. John Williams' music and Ben Burtt's sound design were retained for the show; Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker) and Anthony Daniels (C-3PO) reprised their roles as well. The radio drama featured scenes not seen in the final cut of the film, such as Luke Skywalker's observation of the space battle above Tatooine through binoculars, a skyhopper race, and Darth Vader's interrogation of Princess Leia. In terms of Star Wars canon, the radio drama is given the highest designation (like the screenplay and novelization), G-canon.[72][73

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