The Empire Strikes Back is a great movie. It’s also arguably the most important sequel ever. It definitely deserves a glorious and moving trailer. But back in 1979 and 1980, movie trailers featured cheesy voiceovers that made it hard to understand the tone of the movie. Thanks to a fan recut, Empire now has the serious and adventurous trailer it deserves. This modern Star Wars trailer is classic 2020s, complete with a slow version of the theme music and many hero shots. There are also the disembodied voices of Emperor Palpatine and Obi-Wan Kenobi. Even though we’ve seen the movie countless times, watching this trailer gives us goosebumps. Now we can’t wait to see the movie all over again.
Though the modern vision of this Star Wars trailer does introduce the new character Lando Calrissian, there are no shots of Yoda. The lack of spoilers is admirable, though we’ve definitely seen modern previews that give away too much. This may be more of a teaser. There are some great shots of new planets like Hoth, Dagobah, and Bespin but little about the plot. The modern trailer, which we saw on Boing Boing, is one of many on the Floris De Canne YouTube channel. They also put together modern trailers for Star Wars‘ A New Hope, Return of the Jedi, The Phantom Menace, and Revenge of the Sith.
We have seen other modern trailer takes for Empire Strikes Back. This one really plays up the fact that it’s Episode V, though that’s not mentioned in any of the real trailers we’ve seen for the movie. Those, like the one below, narrated by Harrison Ford, sometimes include scenes that didn’t make it into the final cut of the movie. Other trailers, meanwhile, showed lightsabers without any color added.
In contrast to the modern trailer treatment, fans also recently made a perfectly retro Andor opening credits sequence. If Star Wars came out in timeline order and Andor premiered in 1975, there would be plenty of camp, low-definition, and interesting font choices. Of course, we all know what happens in the movies. But it is a lot of fun to reimagine what may have gotten us excited for them across time.
Melissa is Nerdist’s science & technology staff writer. She also moderates “science of” panels at conventions and co-hosts Star Warsologies, a podcast about science and Star Wars. Follow her on Twitter @melissatruth.