Thursday, May 26, 2016

Rare 'Revenge Of The Jedi' Teaser Trailer Unearthed

By: Benjamin Hart

Yesterday we celebrated the 33rd anniversary of the release of Star Wars: Episode - Return Of The Jedi on May 25th, 1983. To coincide with the milestone, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has unveiled an incredible rare piece of Star Wars history in the form of a teaser trailer. The 30 second long trailer announces the then upcoming arrival of "Star Wars: Revenge Of The Jedi" in theaters at Christmas of 1983 with flashes of several still images from the film on the screen.

Now, obviously, Revenge Of The Jedi was an initial title that was rejected late in production due to the filmmakers coming to the conclusion that Jedi do not take revenge. But that wasn't before Revenge made it into much of the marketing material for the film, such as this trailer.

The trailer itself was attached to a double feature of A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back that was screened in U.K. theaters from May through December in 1982. The teaser was the result of negotiations between Lucasfilm and 20th Century Fox about a possible Christmas 1983 release for Jedi. It was thought to be a way to get families out of the house during Winter and would provide a wealth of merchandising and promotional opportunities. Additionally, it was considered that props and costumes from the film were to be free by then to use in department store window displays in the U.K. The plan was ultimately scrapped in favor of releasing Return Of The Jedi in the Summer on June 2nd, 1983, one week after the U.S release.

This is all especially interested considering that its sequel, The Force Awakens, would go on to be released during the Holidays more than 30 years later. Fans in the U.K. almost had a Star Wars Christmas back in 1983.

Be sure to visit the Academy's website to read more and see other rare promotional artifacts.


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