George Lucas teases “Jedi” alternate opening

By Sean O’Connell We now know one of the deleted scenes on the “Star Wars” Blu-rays that George Lucas announced over the weekend will be an alternate opening to “Return of the Jedi,” the third installment in the filmmaker’s original trilogy.

A clip of the scene, which screened at “Star Wars Celebration” in Orlando, is actually hosted over at Geek Syndicate, so click it before Lucasfilm Ltd. makes them take it down.

Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher were on hand for the announcement and screening of the alternate opening, which shows Darth Vader trying to lure Luke over to the Dark Side of the Force, as well as Skywalker tinkering with a lightsaber, which he places in R2D2’s head (to be used later in the film).

It’s already being rumored that Lucas might have shot this footage specifically for the Blu-ray, as Hamill has gone on record as saying he never filmed that scene, and the man playing Skywalker in the shadowy clip has his face obscured by a hood. We may be able to tell for sure when the Blu-rays arrive next fall. Until then, may the Force, and a glaxy of patience, be with you.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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