Star Wars on Digital HD

Copyright Lucasfilm.
Star Wars Digital Movie Collection

I saw my first video on a handheld device – I believe it was a Sony Clie Palm-based handheld – I was really excited.  I mean, I could watch video in my hand.  But not that excited.  Actually, I was a tad frustrated.  Why?  Because as cool as it was, I still couldn’t watch Star Wars.  I made a declaration then (circa 2002)…

I WILL NOT REJOICE UNTIL I CAN WATCH FRICKIN’ STAR WARS IN THE PALM OF MY FRICKIN’ HAND.

That day may have finally come.

StarWars.com is announcing that on April 10, all six Star Wars films will be available on Digital HD.

As anticipation builds for the December release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the first new film in the Star Wars saga in a decade, The Walt Disney Studios, Lucasfilm Ltd., and 20th Century Fox today announced the upcoming release of The Star Wars Digital Movie Collection. All six epic films in the saga, from The Phantom Menace to Return of the Jedi, will be available on Digital HD globally beginning Friday, April 10.

“We’re thrilled that fans will be able to enjoy the Star Wars saga on their digital devices wherever they go,” commented Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy. “These films broke new ground in technology, design, sound, and visual effects, and we’ve created some very special bonus material which delves into the saga’s rich history, including new and never-before-released conversations between legendary Star Wars artists — the masters who helped George bring his iconic universe to life.”

There’s still a lot of unanswered questions.

The reason Star Wars hasn’t been available for digital download or streaming had more to do with digital rights than with technology.  While Disney owns Lucasfilm and the Star Wars properties themselves, the rights to  digital distribution of the films is still in the hands of 20th Century Fox.  This press release, while hopeful for my quest of watching frickin’ Star Wars in my frickin’ hand, does not provide any details on what this means.

Are they going to be available for purchase via digital (seems like it given Amazon)?  Rental?  Streaming?  What vendors will carry them (Amazon, Apple, Google Play)?  Netflix?  This is all very important especially for those of us who don’t have DVD players anymore.

The trailers available on StarWars.com show clips of the Special Edition releases.  Will the original Star Wars editions be available as well?  (Just FYI, the original releases are available on DVD on Disc two of one of the previous DVD sets.  You can see it here for SWE4 on Amazon).

We’ll see soon enough.  I’ve waited more than a decade for this.  I can wait a few more days.

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