New behind-the-scenes Star Wars footage found on long-lost LaserDisc

A rare 1983 LaserDisc was recovered from Lucasfilm's EditDroid archives containing 30 minutes of never-before-seen Star Wars: Return of the Jedi footage.

A rare 1984 LaserDisc was recovered from Lucasfilm's EditDroid archives containing 30 minutes of never-before-seen Star Wars: Return of the Jedi footage.

(Credit: Return of the Jedi long lost Edit Droid Laserdisc Discovered)

A LaserDisc that has apparently been in limbo for 30 years has been recovered by a group of people on Facebook, containing never-before-seen behind-the-scenes footage of Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi. Calling themselves Return of the Jedi long lost Edit Droid Laserdisc Discovered, the group found the LaserDisc on eBay for US$699, containing 50 raw, unedited takes of the scenes on Dagobah starring Luke Skywalker and Yoda.

The disc's eBay seller, lavenderjadelain, seems to specialise in old media.

LaserDisc, the first commercial optical disc, is about the size of a vinyl LP and was the chosen method of storage used by LucasFilm for its EditDroid footage editing system — the precursor to editing software Avid and Final Cut Pro. It is one of these editing discs that the group found.

So far, they have posted three clips to Facebook: a one-minute take of Yoda's death scene, a 59-second take of R2-D2 repairing Luke Skywalker's X-Wing and a 58-second take of a scene between Yoda and Luke with alternative dialogue to what appeared in the final version of the film.

That leaves around 27 minutes of footage remaining. Sign up to the Facebook page to see it as it goes live; although the group has posted a copyright disclaimer, we're not sure it will be enough to protect the page from Disney's legal team.

 

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