There’s nothing like a good Star Wars scene you’ve never seen before to start your week off right. What we’re seeing here is the purchase of a massively expensive LaserDisc-format Return of the Jedi complete with a collection of behind-the-scenes video clips so rare that @THX found them amazing to behold. This is the collection known as EditDroid Demo ROTJ – manufactured by 3M from Saint Paul, Minnesota.
The disk itself contains 30 minutes of raw, unedited footage from Return of the Jedi, the bulk of it centering in on Luke Skywalker and his conversations with Yoda on the planet Dagobah. There you’ll find multiple takes of Yoda speaking to the camera, pullbacks, cuts, and angles you’ve likely never seen before.
Alternate takes of the scenes you HAVE seen before are included as well. There are different lines spoken, different lighting and film quality, and even a scene of R2-D2 repairing Luke’s X-Wing for far longer than necessary! The chopping up of this series of scenes is currently still in progress.
Many of these scenes show how coverage was filmed – this includes the R2-D2 shot as well as exterior shots of Yoda’s hut. Once inside the structure, odd variations on scenes are shown, well before final editing and the re-recording of the audio necessary to edit a final film. Thus is the pre-EditDroid action as demoed later in the discs.
Above you’ll see images of both sides of the disk – one of them, at least – just as it (or they) appeared shipped via eBay. This purchase was made by the new owner unseen and un-handled in person – though it would appear that his investment was one well made!
As for the rest of the Star Wars original video: at the moment it would appear that the owner of the disk is at about 12 minutes of footage, with an additional 18 minutes to go – we’ll keep you updated as he moves forward!