When this series was first broadcast on National Public Radio in 1981, it generated the largest response in the network's history: 50,000 letters and phone calls in a single week, an audience of 750,000 per episode, and a subsequent 40-percent jump in NPR listenership.
This landmark production, perhaps the most ambitious radio project ever attempted, began when Star Wars creator George Lucas donated the story rights to an NPR affiliate. Writer Brian Daley adapted the film's highly visual script to the special demands and unique possibilities of radio, creating a more richly textured tale with greater emphasis on character development. Director John Madden guided a splendid cast, including Mark Hamill and Anthony Daniels, reprising their film roles as Luke Skywalker and the persnickety robot See Threepio, through an intense 10-day dialogue recording session. Then came months of painstaking work for virtuoso sound engineer Tom Voegeli, whose brilliant blending of the actors' voices, the music, and hundreds of sound effects takes this intergalactic adventure into a realm of imagination that is beyond the reach of cinema.
© and (P)1993, 1996 Lucasfilm Ltd.
This is an amazing work. I can recall listening to this many years ago on tape, before I saw any of the Star Wars films.
In a way this production is a reconnection with the roots of the whole Star Wars saga, namely Flash Gordon and other science fiction radio and film serials. The production values are very high and the listener is not bombarded with too many incidental background effects. There is an emphasis on dialogue.
Radio is, after all "the theater of the mind's eye".
Great way to read great books on the go. Love Sci Fi especially Orson Scott Card and Star Wars.
Excellent additions to the story. A great radio drama that captures the action and tickles the ears.
The additions to the story were intersting and helped make the story interesting, especially the race at the begining.
No I have not.
The moments with Obi Wan were just as powerful if not more so on the radio.
Great example of radio drama excellence.
I saw the original movies as a kid and heard this as well. I didn't appreciate it when it aired originally but years later, I'm surprised how much I really enjoyed this.
It made me fall in love with this story all over again.
There is so much more to this story through this than the movies or books and my hat is off to the producers who really knew what they were doing. The later stories of Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi are also worthwhile.
Sure the actors aren't the same, but the story is so much more rich and satisfying, I really didn't care after about the third episode of this multipart series.
If you liked (or loved) Star Wars you owe it to yourself to rediscover this great story told in a fresh and remarkable way.
Didn't even know this existed. Has Mark Hamill the original Luke Skywalker. Sound effects and music are really cool too. Wish they did this kind of stuff on the radio now a days.
The story in and of its self is well done. What isnt done well is the repetitive re-announcing and ending of where this was done. You could easily cut 35 min of this Star Wars dramatization by taking out the NPR announcements and chapter endings and Star Wars theme music at every start and end of every chapter...
Sorry about the upside down picture. I can't figure out how to straighten it out.
A must listen for any Star Wars Fan... it's almost like listening to the movie in 3d! Very well done.
The extras here should have been in the movie. The first four chapters add depth to the whole story. I wonder if this is still considered canon. Rouge One with this audio fills in much backstory that the 1977 movie left out. This was fantastic.
This was the best of the three radio dramas, made of the original Star Wars trilogy. The cast was great, and the expansion of the events from A New Hope were interesting and seemed to fit right into the story. I'm sure these extra scenes are not considered canon, but it's still fun.
It would great if they made these for Episode 1, 2, and 3.
Years ago I heard Return of the Jedi in this format on the radio and enjoyed it. I'm glad I found this and can't wait to hear episode 5. May the force be with you!
"Better than the movie?"
In my humbled opinion yes as it gives scenario background that the movie omitted, I did find the scene/chapter ending a bit too long and annoying, but a very good audio book if you have seen the movie several times, for a first listen without seeing the movie it could be confusing, but a 5* from me!
"Love this! but the editing needs to be better!"
So I am a massive Starwars geek and loved this production BUT the episode really needed to be edited into one production! the recaps and the music do become a bit of a pain after a while! Still Mark Hamill forever!
My first Star Wars experience was a cinema trip to see the re-released version of episode 4. I've loved it ever since.
Listening to the radio show filled a few gaps in my knowledge. It shows that you don't need to actually see anything to enjoy Star Wars - the dialogue and sound effects make for a really entertaining experience.
I hadn't seen the originals for a long while so I really was rediscovering the story and this production is so engaging. some parts could have done with a narrator in my opinion but not enough to drop a star. looking forward to the next one!
"I love this version"
This version of Star Wars A New Hope is fantastic. I love how each of the main characters (Luke, Leia, Han and Chewbacca) are introduced with such a detailed story before getting to the main plot. it's just a shame the film couldn't be made the same way. though that may make the film 4-5 hours long.
Fantastic just as I remember it from years ago absolutely a MUST for all star wars fans
"My first Audible"
really good introduction to Audible. I remember listening to the original radio series so many years ago. recommended if you like Star Wars.
great voice acting, well dramatised for Radio,excellent pacing. Sound effects brilliant. would highly recommend to anyone.
"The Force is strong with this one!"
I remember listening to this on the radio as a youngster, back in the late 70s, or early 80s, and it hasn't lost any of the excitement of discovering new Star Wars that it had then. Mark Hamill & Anthony Daniels recreate their roles as Luke Skywalker & C-3P0, and are surrounded by an excellent cast of supporting actors filling the other famous roles. The new voices are similar enough for you to picture the appropriate characters, and they fulfil their roles well. The real pleasure, however, is the extra story & character content. Some of it I recognise a being part of George Lucy's original storyline (Luke and Biggs on Tatooine etc) but some, I'm guessing, is completely original and most of it expertly fills in holes in the film plot that you didn't even realise were there. And when you add in John Williams' wonderful score, and Ben Burrt's amazing soundscape you end up with a fantastic variation of a an great familiar story! :-)
"Star Wars The Considerably Extended Edition!"
Despite not benefiting from any visual effects, it was as engaging as the movie version.
I've thought about this, but I can't settle on just one.
Their performances are as good as they were on the big screen.
No, it's not that sort of story, but it did make me nostalgic.
Well worth a shufty - I'm now listening to The Empire Strikes Back!
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