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I remember seeing this particular scene from Star Wars, Episode IV in the theater during the film's original release in 1977. Luke Skywalker watches the battle between the Rebel Blockade Runner and the Imperial Star Destroyer above Tatooine via binoculars.

Was this scene cut from later releases of Star Wars Ep IV?

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Are you sure you saw it? Was it not just in the book? –  Binary Worrier Dec 20 '13 at 15:48
Yeah, it was in the film. I know I'm not making this up. –  RobertF Dec 20 '13 at 15:51

1 Answer 1

up vote 29 down vote accepted

You're not imagining it, but by all accounts, that scene was never released in the theater. You probably saw some of the early marketing materials (mentioned below) and your brain filled in the rest.

Wookieepedia describes the scene:

Luke Skywalker is in the Tatooine desert repairing a moisture vaporator, assisted by a Treadwell droid, when he notices shining objects in the sky. With his macrobinoculars Luke sees two ships engaged in combat beyond the atmosphere. He jumps into his landspeeder. The malfunctioning Treadwell blows a fuse and is unable to follow. Luke speeds off into the desert to find his friends.

It, or images from it, have been released in the following places:

  • Star Wars "Lost Cut"
  • Star Wars: From the Adventures of Luke Skywalker 1977 novelization
  • The Marvel Comics adaptation
  • The Star Wars Storybook
  • pre-release publicity photographs, bubblegum cards
  • Behind The Magic CD ROM (1998)- silent, monochrome video, degraded quality
  • online from a variety of fan websites
  • Star Wars Radio Drama (Visual\Hearing only)
  • Star Wars (Blu-ray)

The scene can be viewed here.

Supposedly, it was cut because

Before the film was cut, this was the audience's first sight of the young Luke Skywalker, much earlier than in the final cut. It was removed along with subsequent scenes of Luke and his friends in Anchorhead. George Lucas had originally written the scenes and shot them at the suggestion of his industry friends who thought that audiences wouldn't understand the story strictly being told from a droid's point of view.

Upon realizing that the story was really about the droids' adventures and it was them leading things to Luke and Obi-Wan, etc. Lucas took the footage out.

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Yes, that's the one. Maybe one of the unedited versions of the film was accidentally sent to my theater. :) –  RobertF Dec 20 '13 at 16:52
Thank you, sir. I had never known this was an actual filmed scene. I remember hearing it in the radio play and was going to comment to that effect, but this is better. –  Adrian Mar 6 '14 at 2:07

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