The Star Wars Holiday Special. The name alone is enough to send cold shivers down the spine of any Star Wars fan. Originally airing only once on TV in 1978, they filled this super cheesy variety special with cringe moments. And making it all even worse somehow, almost the entire original cast of A New Hope appears in it. Carrie Fisher even sings. (While totally holding back laughter).
But the Star Wars Holiday Special has never had any kind of official release, despite its availability for years on YouTube. Presumably, Lucasfilm just wants this one struck from the canon. Well, via CBR, we’ve learned that YouTuber Nick Acosta has now uploaded a 4K upgrade of the Holiday Special. Well, at least some memorable scenes from it, in a modern-style trailer. They even use the epic The Force Awakens trailer music, which is hilarious.
The premise of the special had Han Solo taking Chewbacca back home to Kashyyyk for “Life Day,” which is basically the Wookiee Christmas or Thanksgiving. He reunites with his family, wife Malla, son Lumpy, and father Itchy. (We never hear or see this Wookiee family ever again). Somehow, the story takes sidetracks into various musical numbers from the likes of Jefferson Starship and Diahann Carroll. Even Bea Arthur shows up in the cantina. Although we kinda don’t mind that part.
Perhaps the special’s greatest crime? It preempted The Incredible Hulk and Wonder Woman the night it aired. The nerve.
Despite its epic tackiness, the Star Wars Holiday special did have one genuinely cool thing about it. An animated short which introduced Boba Fett, almost two years before his The Empire Strikes Back live-action debut. This short has been officially released, and can even be seen now on Disney+. As for the rest of the special? Don’t hold your breath. But with this new 4k restoration, maybe someone at Lucasfilm gets inspired. Then we can have Princess Leia’s full “Life Day” song presented in high definition glory at last.