Star Wars: Episodes IV-VI | Cinema Secrets

Star Wars: Episodes IV-VI | Cinema Secrets


Hi, I’m Jamie and here are the Cinema Secrets
of STAR WARS! George Lucas started writing Star Wars in
1974, and it went through A LOT of drafts. Han Solo was originally a green alien. Luke
Skywalker was an old general, and at one point a woman. These versions of Luke became Obi-Wan
Kenobi and Princess Leia. When they started filming, Luke’s surname
was Starkiller. Lucas thought this was too reminiscent of Charles Manson’s crimes,
so he changed Luke’s name to Skywalker. Luckily his surname hadn’t been mentioned
in any of the scenes filmed at that point. Still, the actors all hated George Lucas’
writing. Alec Guinness thought the script was awful and claimed he asked for his character
to be killed off. But George denies it. Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher
all improvised their dialogue based on Lucas’ original script. And for this scene, Ford deliberately didn’t
learn his lines to make it sound more authentic. This is another little moment improvised on
set. Chewbacca was played by Peter Mayhew, who
is 7 foot 2. Apparently all he had to do to get the part was “stand up”. He was working
as a hospital orderly at the time, and went back to work at the hospital after making
the film. But originally, Wookies were meant to be small
and technologically primitive animals who lived in the jungle. Sound familiar? Heck, even the name Ewok is just a spin on
Wookie! The iconic strip lights in the walls of the
Death Star were created by cinematographer Gilbert Taylor. The sets were too dark so
he just cut holes in the walls and put lights in them. George Lucas hated the look, but
luckily he kept it. The first film was greenlit with an $8 million
budget, but it went up to $11 million. About half of that was spent on the visual effects.
And back in the seventies, they were GROUNDBREAKING. The spaceships were all created with highly
detailed miniatures. They were put on a rig with a computer-controlled camera that was
specially invented for Star Wars. The planets were all painted balls. They got a bit more
sophisticated for the next two films. The Stormtroopers’ guns were just converted
from real guns. If you look closely, you can see the cartridges
being ejected. Some ray gun! And then there’s the lightsaber. In A New
Hope, the effect was created with a spinning rod covered in highly reflective material
they make cinema screens out of. That’s why the original lightsabers look a bit wobbly.
The colors were rotoscoped onto the rod in post-production. Episodes V and VI created
the entire effect in post, but still had a plain rod so the actors could actually fight
each other on set. They also cast nice little shadows. Ben Burtt created the sound of the lightsaber
by combining the hum of a 35mm movie projector and the feedback from waving a microphone
cable in front of a TV! The sound of the Star Destroyer’s engines
is actually a broken air conditioner. And the TIE fighters’ screaming flyby is
really the squeal of a baby elephant combined with noise of a car driving past. The Wilhelm Scream! When Darth Vader chokes Captain Antilles,
it’s the sound of walnut shells being crushed. It’s the same sound effect used when Leia
gets Han out of the carbonite. One of the reasons Han Solo was frozen in
carbonite was because Harrison Ford wasn’t sure if he’d return for a third film. That’s
why he famously changed his last line in Empire Strikes Back from something like [ARNIE SAYS
“I’ll be back” IN T2] to [HAN SOLO SAYS “I know.”] For all their scenes together, Carrie Fisher
had to stand on a box because she’s a foot smaller than Ford. Didn’t stop him copping
a feel. Even then, Harrison Ford wanted to die in
Return Of The Jedi, but George Lucas wouldn’t allow it. The character of Han Solo was based on George
Lucas’ friend, Francis Ford Coppola. He directed a little film called The Godfather,
which George Lucas worked on as an assistant editor. Another of George’s director friends, Brian
De Palma, helped him write the opening credits crawl to A New Hope. De Palma said Lucas’
initial draft was terrible, and he thought the final movie was one of the worst films
ever made. Steven Spielberg thought differently, and
bet Lucas 2.5% of the profits that Star Wars would be a bigger hit than Spielberg’s film,
Close Encounters Of The Third Kind. Spielberg won the bet, and made a tidy $40 million from
it. In fact, Lucas made so much money from the
first film that he funded Episode V himself. He also personally funded the $20 million
worth of changes he made to the Special Editions. One of those changes was removing a shoe from
the asteroid field, which a special effects technician put in because George Lucas was
such a dictatorial nag. Empire had a troubled production. It went
$10 million over budget and over schedule – the shoot lasted 180 days! The first cut was a disaster and required
lots of reshoots. Director Irvin Kershner was entirely focussed on the story and the
actors, and didn’t care for the special effects. So George Lucas, who originally intended
to just produce, ended up supervising all the work by Industrial Light & Magic. It took three puppeteers to animate Yoda.
Mark Hamill struggled to act all alone on a stage with a little green toy, so Frank
Oz, who plays Yoda, brought in Miss Piggy to cheer him up. And Carrie Fisher says the actors did coke
on the Hoth set. She was high for most of filming. The twist that Vader is really Luke’s father
was kept so secret, that only Mark Hamill and James Earl Jones saw the real dialogue
for the scene. Actor Dave Prowse, who plays Vader in the suit, was given a different script
and Hamill had to IMAGINE he was hearing the real lines. And it’s easily the best film in the franchise.
But George Lucas used to think it’s the worst one. He even fired producer Gary Kurtz
because he thought people were interested in the story, whereas Lucas thought they were
only interested in the spectacle. Prowse was nicknamed Darth Farmer by the other
actors because of his country accent. He didn’t know James Earl Jones had dubbed over his
voice until he saw the final cut of A New Hope. James Earl Jones asked not to be credited
for the first film, because he felt it was disrespectful to Prowse. Speaking of disrespecting Prowse – his contract
awarded him a percentage of the profits of Return Of The Jedi. But he says 20th Century
Fox’s accountants have never paid him anything, because officially Episode VI has never made
a profit. Prowse also didn’t know they’d filmed
a scene with actor Sebastian Shaw as the real face of Darth Vader. Lucas later replaced Sebastian Shaw’s head
with Hayden Christensen’s. Steven Spielberg was going to direct Return
Of The Jedi, but couldn’t because he was a member of the Director’s Guild. George
Lucas left the Guild because of disagreements, so Welsh director Richard Marquand got the
job, because he wasn’t a Guild member. Jabba The Hutt weighed nearly a ton, and it
took six people to bring him to life. Actor Ian McDiarmid had to move the Emperor’s
chair by shuffling his feet, because the mechanism broke. The speeder chase was created by a Steadicam
operator walking backwards through the forest, and filming at a low frame rate. it was then
played back at a normal frame rate, looking like a superfast trip through Endor! Actress Femi Taylor is one of just four female
speaking parts in Episodes IV to VI. She’s also one of just two African-Americans speaking
parts in the trilogy. Diversity! And did you notice the skull superimposed
on Vader’s helmet, right here? Spooky! Gives me a
BAD FEELING. So that’s all my Star Wars Cinema Secrets…
for now. If you enjoyed this video, please like, subscribe and check out Chris’ countdown
of the Top 10 Best Star Wars Battles! Thanks for watching!

52 thoughts on “Star Wars: Episodes IV-VI | Cinema Secrets

  1. Oh George Lucas, your shitty writing capabilities led to the prequels but hell, at least we got lucky with this.

  2. It's interesting that everything good about Star Wars are things George Lucas didn't like. He didn't like how A New Hope was edited, he didn't like Empire Strikes Back (and complained over every petty thing, such as how Vader faught one-handed when a lightsaber was supposed to be held like a katana), and he insisted that everything was done his way even though his creative team disagreed with him over many things. The finished films are good despite George Lucas. This is why the prequels were bad: he was given too much control, and it showed that he was totally out-of-touch with what his audience wanted.

  3. James Earl Jones is a black guy and he does plenty of speaking in the films. Or we could just not care about the ethnicity of actors/actresses because we are all human beings.

    But that's none my business.

  4. The more and more I hear about the behind the scenes of the Star Wars films, the more and more I believe that George Lucas is a total SHIT and an awful film maker.

  5. Can someone explain the reason everyone hates the change to Hayden at the end of rotj?
    Obviously the ghosts are of the jedi at the time of their death and the last time Anakin Skywalker was a Jedi was during Revenge of the Sith, so it makes sense to use that version of him. I guess you could argue that he was a Jedi when he took off his mask, but then surely his ghost should have been of him all cut up and burned.

  6. Very telling that a lot of the creative people around George Lucas gave SWOT the extra edges that it needed and that saved its grace!

  7. Knowing as to how much of a asshole George Lucas is really just made me grateful that Disney now has the rights to it. Maybe having Star wars with Disney could put the franchise in the right direction. My only gripe is that they just take back what they said about the expanded universe of star wars being scrapped because they want to have a clean slate. Not all of the content that star wars made was crap ya know. (Like the mmorpg, the books, and games).

  8. It turns out that Han shot Greedo first. Greedo just kept
    his blaster pointed at him and talked
    too much the whole entire time.

  9. Several statements are vague, misleading or downright false.

    1. Starkiller was changed on the first day of filming. True, none of the scenes saying Starkiller had been filmed, because it was the first day. You make it sound like half the movie was in the can.

    2. I would like to see your source for the claim that Sir Alec Guinness asked for his character to be killed off.

    3. Yes, the actors all did some improv with a few lines of dialogue, but the movie was far from ad libbed. You make it sound like most of the script was changed by the actors.

    4. Wookies were never meant to be short.

    5. Lucas's disagreement with the lighting was because he wasn't use to union rules that didn't allow him to place the lights himself. Not because he hated the lights in the walls.

    6. About $2 million was spent on the visual effects at ILM. Far less than half.

    7. The planets were matte paintings on glass, not painted balls.

    8. Harrison Ford himself said the original response to Leia was "I love you too!" He and Kirshner didn't like the line and felt like it wasn't something Han would say. Harrison improvised the "I know". It didn't have anything to do with whether he would come back or not.

    9. Brian De Palma's comments on how terrible he thought the movie was is when he saw a rough cut of the movie 6 months before release. Most of the special effects and the score were not yet included in that rough cut. You make it sound like he hated the finished movie.

    10. What is your source for the claim that the ILM artist put a shoe in because Lucas was a "dictatorial nag". Everything I have read is it was done as an in joke.

    11. Kirshner was inexperienced with the level of special effects. And there is nothing unusual for the producer to oversee the special effects work in San Francisco, while the director and crew are in England.

    12. Lots of critics and audience members didn't like Empire Strikes Back when it was released. It took several years before it was considered the best of the series.

    13. The disagreement between Kurtz and Lucas was more about Kurtz wanting to go darker and more adult with the story and Lucas wanting a happier, lighthearted ending. Lucas wanted to take a break from Star Wars at the time so he tied up all the loose ends. Kurtz was focused continuing the story into another trilogy.

    14. Fox may not have paid Prowse a percentage of the profits. But all the principal actors received large bonuses from Lucas himself due to the success of the movies.

    15. In the documentary "From Star Wars to Jedi, the Making of a Saga", they show the steadicam operator capturing the footage. He is not walking backwards. For the reverse angle shots, they just ran the film backwards.

    16. There is an African American X-Wing pilot in ROTJ that says, "She's gonna blow!". Plus James Earl Jones is African American.

    17. The "disagreement" between Lucas and the Director's Guild was over opening credits. Lucas wanted the credits to come at the end of the film to preserve the dramatic opening crawl of his film. The Director's Guild disagreed and fined Lucas, and also went after Kirshner. Lucas paid all the fines and left the Guild because of it.

  10. fun fact: George Lukas gave Pete Mayhue his own personal body guard, fearing he would be mistaken for bigfoot.

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