View Full Version : Where to find VHS Trilogy! ("the original, Originals")
08-12-2004, 03:43 PM
Hello! I can't seem to find a place on the internet or at a store that still sell sells the original trilogy VHS set that is new! I've also been looking for a secure site to shop on, and I don't really like shopping on EBAY that much. If anyone has any suggestions I'd appreciate it! THANKS!
08-12-2004, 04:01 PM
Hmmmm Amazon.com or .uk maybe?
08-16-2004, 12:40 PM
This is a somewhat confusing topic (or at least how its' presented).
You can find the VHS trilogy just about anywhere, if you look. Some pristine copies can even be found on ebay yet.
I have some at my local library and other places.
While we don't condone piracy (or rather distribution rights infringement I guess) here, there are "bootleg" dvd editions on ebay and other places that were made (unofficially of course) for/by other countries that are just the widescreen non-special editions.
So the demand clearly exists, Lucas is just being stubborn, wishing to pretend that the originals (the ones that made him such a rich man today, since us fans went to see them so much and paid to rent and buy them so much) don't exist and all we have are the special editions.
Frankly, they're his films, he can do whatever he wants with them, including using digital technology to insert a wise-cracking Jar Jar into EVERY scene of EVERY SW film.
However, he has an obligation to his fans and to film historians to provide the ORIGINAL versions of the films, as they appeared in theaters (or at least how they appeared before the SE's in 1997-98) as well.
Now he hasn't done that since 1995, when the THX Enhanced trilogy was released. Since then it's always been the SE's.
So now a person's only choice is to get on ebay or visit some foreign nation and buy the laser discs, crappy vhs tapes which won't last or some bootleg dvd if they want a copy of the original films before Lucas started messing with them.
Now I've heard the rumors about the "latest changes."
Greedo still shoots first, Hayden Christiansen is suddenly replacing Sebastian Shaw for Anakin's ghost (is Lucas "correcting" his mistake for wanting to shorten the time between trilogies? originally we assumed the Republic died a LONG time ago, because everyone was OLD in the classic trilogy, right?) and some other goofy changes alongside the "Good" ones (like tweaking the vfx, like making Jabba in the new scene in ANH look more realistic).
As long as I get the option to buy the original versions on DVD, I don't care what Lucas does. But so far he doesn't seem up to delivering. It's not like it would cost him a fortune to do. No new special effects need to be completed. He already restored the films in 1997 (they can't have degraded that badly again in just 7 years) so they are out there unless he's destroyed every copy (doubtful if he's making yet another special edition this time). There's even enough extras in existence about the original trilogy to pack a disc with extras if he wanted.
Even a "movie only" 3 disc set with the original trilogy (non-special edition) in widescreen would be adequate.
Too bad, 'cause he could shut down those bootleggers overnight by default and rake that cash into his already overflowing moneybin himself. All the other studios and directors are doing the right thing (Speilberg with E.T., the Alien Quadraligy, etc.) Oh well...
09-08-2004, 05:03 PM
Sorry, we don't like bootlegging -- Lynk Former
09-14-2004, 01:37 PM
I have a copy of the original set right next to my TV. The DVD set will balance it out on the other side. :)
09-23-2004, 12:28 PM
I have the original VHS releases from the '80s, and the "digitally enhanced" VHS boxed set that was released in the '90s. I prefer the "pre-SE" versions any day of the week. I absolutely do not care for the SE's at all.
09-23-2004, 01:58 PM
Originally posted by Kurgan
However, he has an obligation to his fans and to film historians to provide the ORIGINAL versions of the films, as they appeared in theaters (or at least how they appeared before the SE's in 1997-98) as well. he has no obligation to do anything he doesn't wish to do. He gave us movies of his own mental creation, and nearly suffered a heart attack to do so. He gave us hours of entertainment, often having to spend his own money to do so. If anything we owe him. If he hadn't spent his own money on empire, we'd be nowhere but with just ANH. He doesn't owe us anything. I for one don't see why everyone thinks he's some money hungry feind. He's just trying to share his stories. So he makes some money doing it, so what. He gave all he had into these movies, he still didn't get all he wanted in it. That's why he decided to go ahead and do special editions, to try and complete his vision. He owes us nothing more than a thank you for enjoying my movies and buying them.
09-23-2004, 03:29 PM
Originally posted by InsaneSith
he has no obligation to do anything he doesn't wish to do. He gave us movies of his own mental creation, and nearly suffered a heart attack to do so. He gave us hours of entertainment, often having to spend his own money to do so. If anything we owe him. If he hadn't spent his own money on empire, we'd be nowhere but with just ANH. He doesn't owe us anything. I for one don't see why everyone thinks he's some money hungry feind.
He may not be a "money hungry feind" but he is pretty rich, and his wealth is primarily due to the shrewd deals he made with the Star Wars franchise, his cash cow.
He's used the VHS re-releases and the SE's to raise money and keep Star Wars in the public eye to finance the prequels. And there's the action figure sales of which he gets a tidy sum (re-re-re-releases). There's nothing wrong with being a smart businessman, no, not at all.
But it's the idea that the originals "no longer exist" and he wants to keep revising them that has people irked. If his goal is money he stands to make even more this way, but he (for once) chooses to pass up the opportunity.
"We owe him"? Well, going by the logic used, no, we don't owe him anything. As consumers we pay for what we want, so we're even (unless you're out there stealing from him somehow). We have no obligation to buy or like anything he's ever made. It's purely our choice.
Rather, he owes it (perhaps morally, not legally of course) to the cinematic community, to history, to preserve these works of art he's created.
Some famous author declared that his work should ALL be destroyed upon his death, but somebody disobeyed his dying wish and now it's a respected part of literature.
Unfortunately the name escapes me, but while I respect artistic integrity, there is a certain loss to society when somebody refuses to make their work available.
Lucas is being stubborn and he's still alive and listening (even if he doesn't always do what his fans want), so we're LETTING HIM KNOW. The people saying "shut up, leave Lucas alone!" well, they're entitled to their opinion too, but he can speak for himself. ; )
Since no one can force him to do anything (certainly not a rich guy like Lucas), the best we can do is try to convince him. Spread the word, support public petitions, vote with your wallets.
He's just trying to share his stories. So he makes some money doing it, so what. He gave all he had into these movies, he still didn't get all he wanted in it.
Granted, and more power to him. Nothing wrong with that. I never said Lucas should work for free. ; )
But he turns around and says to his fans "Oh, you know that art of mine you like so much that you've been eating up all these years? Well it doesn't exist anymore, sorry. But can I interest you in this other piece of art that's sort of like it? In stores now!"
People defend Lucas's "original vision" and his rights as an artist till the cows come home, but really, he loses nothing by not releasing the Original Versions on DVD.
He even said "if you want the originals, you can get them on VHS."
Heh, right. You mean we can go on ebay and try to get one. And he knows as well as anyone that it's not the same. VHS tapes don't last, and they're inferior quality to DVD. He's got a full digital master of the three films, via his restoration work on the Trilogy.
He's got some nerve saying that after all his blustering about "no Star Wars DVD's until 2005" announcements. Lucas the THX man telling us to be happy with inferior quality. Or does he think that since the OT is now garbage ("no longer exists") that he doesn't care if it rots away on this crappy format. Um, no. The fans asked for Star Wars on DVD. After hemming and hawing for seven years he gives us another re-worked Special Edition with minimal extras (compared to what he could have given us, just look at all the documentaries, interviews and deleted scenes out there) and half of those extras aren't even about the movies themselves!
Lucas the stickler for quality should know that his fans won't be satisfied with fading VHS tapes of his movies. Hopefully he'll come around sooner or later. And he claimed he released these NOW because he was afraid of losing all the potential money to pirates. Hello, Lucas! People are bootlegging the OT right now, precisely because there's a market for the unmodified trilogy on dvd format! Get in there and grab the pie before it's all gone indeed...
That's why he decided to go ahead and do special editions, to try and complete his vision. He owes us nothing more than a thank you for enjoying my movies and buying them.
Mr. Lucas is that you??? J/K, I'm sure you meant "his movies and buying them." ; )
The Special Editions were made to get people thinking about Star Wars again (and see how marketable the movies were in theaters) and make money for the prequels. It's the same reason why the DVD's are being released.
His "original vision" could have been updated anytime, but he waited so long to do it, and (dare I say) only did it half-way.
Ask anyone who has the DVD's and has actually watched them. There's numerous flaws in the films that have been there since the films were released and have not been fixed. Were these flaws part of his "original vision"?
Why did he spend the money changing the stories and characters he created and ignore the goofs he made?
Clearly Lucas is making it up as he goes along (the Star Wars saga) and revising it as he sees fit. That's not wrong either, it's the fools he's taking us for that it was "always intended" this way and that WE'RE the "Indian Givers" (note: this is just an expression, an old but apt one) for not accepting it over the Originals.
And he has nothing to complain about either. He'll clean up on this DVD release just like he has everything else Star Wars related (except perhaps the prequels). He'll be laughing about this one all the way to the bank.
Thanks George but let's see the Originals sometime huh? That'll shut up the fanboys, won't it?
I have this VHS trilogy:
It's quite a recent one (2000 I think).
I'd like to get the original trilogy as well but am unsure which ones are available. I have a few questions if that's ok:
When was the trilogy first released on VHS?
How many times was the trilogy released on VHS?
Are the digitally remastered 1995 - 2000 VHS versions (special edition) all the same? For example: is the 1995 release different from the 2000 release?
Is there a definitive webpage for all this? :)
09-26-2004, 01:20 PM
IIRC, this is how it was done:
Original release (VHS & LaserDisk):
Sometime in the 1980's, the movies were released in full frame.
The boxes showed the old "movie poster" art for each that has a painting like rendering of a bunch of images together (Macho looking Luke in white with raised saber and curvy Leia posing; Han & Leia doing the "dip" romantic thing and Luke on the Taun Taun; Luke's raised saber, etc; basically the art you see on the surface of the DVD discs now).
Re-Release (VHS & LaserDisk):
Sometime in the late 80's (after all the movies had been out for awhile) they were released again in widescreen format. There's also a "VCD" (VideoCD) version from this era, but it's full frame and hard to find (popular in Asia, but not in the US).
Not sure what the boxes look like for these, honestly. May look just like the ones above.
THX Enhanced Release (VHS & LaserDisk):
1992-1995 there were two releases of the "THX Enhanced" editions. Widescreen, maximum visual quality (but not a full film restoration as we'd get later) and remastered audio. Also a few of the lines are different because of the different audio used. Such as "close the blast doors/open the blast doors" in ANH (instead of just one of the lines) and "you're lucky you got out of there" from ESB (instead of the much funnier "you're luck you don't taste very good) and Han's line in ROTJ ("Trust Me" vs. "I can see a lot better now.")
When you see this version CHECK THE PACKAGING CAREFULLY. There are BOTH full frame AND widescreen versions of the THX Enhanced Trilogy.
The boxes show on the front a "face" (Vader, Stormtrooper, Yoda) with some stuff in the background.
The THX is probably the version you want, since it's the most recent "original", best quality and probably least degraded over time.
Additionally, the THX Enhanced versions each had an interview with George Lucas (by film critic Leonard Maltin) before each movie, as well as a short ad for the THX Enhanced trilogy.
After the THX releases we come to:
Special Edition Release (VHS & LaserDisk):
After the 1997 theatrical releases of the Special Edition two "packages" of the Special Editions were released.
They came in a cardboard box, very similar to the one that the DVD's come in, although it was flat (no "bubble detail") and of somewhat sturdier cardboard. Slide open the box (two parts) and you had the three VHS tapes inside (each in its own cardboard sleeve like standard VHS movies had at the time)
There were two versions:
"Gold" This was the Pan 'n' Scan version.
"Silver" This was the widescreen version.
The Artwork (again much like the 2004 DVD's) iirc was a Darth Vader image. Each of the individual tapes was colored to match the main package, with a color image of the "New" posters used for the SE's that were in theaters (montages of faces of characteres with background images of ships and stuff basically).
The LaserDisk version was of course different in packaging obviously.
If you take a look at any of the LaserDisk sets on ebay, you'll note that there seem to be a lot of disks. But that's because you basically needed two disks per movie (and you had to flip 'em too). I don't recall if they put the extras on a seperate disk or just spread them out over the course of the set, but I'm sure you could find out.
There was probably also a VCD of this in full frame, but I'm not positive.
VCD's of course had no extras, just the movie.
Each of the SE's had a short featurette at the start telling about the making of that particular SE.
Special Edition Re-Release(s):
Now we get to the fuzzy part. I know the SE was re-released at least once, but possibly TWICE.
The last time was like in 2000 or 2001 and we got a short "Episode II Preview" on one of the tapes. It was basically fluff, talking about digital filmmaking and some blue screen effects (similar to the Episode III preview on the new DVD's really). But I can't remember if there was a release before that that had an "Episode I Preview" type thing with it. In these versions I'm not sure if the previews replaced the old featurettes about the "making of the SE" things or not.
The outer packaging is what you see above in that pic that was posted. On one side its got a black background on the other side it has a white background.
Honestly the one and only time I ever bought the SW Trilogy on VHS was with the SE's and I got burned because I bought the pan 'n' scans by mistake (not realizing the silver packaging that came out later was widescreen).
In any case, all of the Special Edition Re-Releases were released simultaneously on LaserDisk & VHS. No idea about the VCD's.
10-09-2004, 07:58 AM
I PROMISE U CAN FIND IT ON EBAY!!!!!!!!
10-10-2004, 06:08 PM
Just be sure you get as much information as you can from the seller before you place your bid(s).
With all the versions, you don't want to accidentally end up with the Full Frame SE edition (like I did)!
May the Force Be With You. ; )
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