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Publisher's Summary

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.

Don't miss the NPR dramatizations of The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi.
© and (P)1993, 1996 Lucasfilm Ltd.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
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Performance

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.7 out of 5.0
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  • Overall

Star Wars

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!

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I loved it

I just wished some of it was in the movie it would've given it more depth

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One in a million

This is hands down a must for any fan of Star Wars or audio books. Its a full dramatization!! Really enjoyed it.

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Loved it!

It enriched a story I know so well.

I wish this Han Solo was in the film, his arch is fantastic.

And like rogue one, this fleshed out Tarken and gave a lot of insight into his character.

The voices of the other actors take a little getting used to after years of listening to Harrison Ford, James Earl Jones and Carrie Fisher (rip may the force be with you... always) but after a while don't notice it.

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A very different version, but worth it for fans

This version was very different than just an audio adaptation of the film. It's more like what Star Wars would have been, had it not been so visionary and better than the shows of its age. This version was more melodramatic and clunky. Closer to a Twilight Zone episode than an epic...

That being said, it's worth listening to for serious fans of the series. The characterization and fuller backstories of some characters provide some fun alternative perspectives to what we all assume were Luke, Han and Leia's motivations.

-Han and Luke were shown as deeper characters
-Obi Wan and Leia are shallower, or at least, less enjoyable
-Vader really didn't feel convincing, his villainous-ness felt very forced and tawdry

Some of the actions scenes didn't translate well to radio, but others held up fine and the extended portions of character development were engaging.

All in all, a good listen for dedicated fans to hear what might have been, and to give better perspective on just how good the film version really was. But not recommended for casual fans expecting an audiobook version right from the film.

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I loved it

this was and fascinating story, I wish is was the whole movie dramatized is a great way to tell the story.

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Great version of the Star Wars New Hope story.

I remember, as a child agonizing for each episode to be released on the local NPR radio station. It was good then, but even better now all together and being able to listen to the Episodes back to back.

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How could u go wrong with Star Wars?!

I loved the concept of putting Star Wars (my favorite movie series of ALL time) into a very overlooked form of entertainment, the radio drama! Some might think the acting is a bit hoaky, but u almost HAVE to overact to be in a radio drama. It's so cool to hear Mark Hamill be Luke in this vain. I would recommend checking it out...especially if ur a fan of the best movie series in the galaxy far, far away!

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Oh the memories

Though I missed the original cast voices of Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher, the story is always the greatest of its time and of all time, if you recognize how ahead if our times George Lucas truly was. Star Wars is a classic:)

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Audio theater Excellence

Whether you're a major Star Wars fan, or, like me, you just like good stories told well, this is audio theater at its best. I discovered this on CD through my local library, but when I realized Audible had it, I picked it up on impulse.

This dramatization really adds a lot to the story, fleshing out Luke, Han Solo, and just about every other character. I'm sure it was both fun and challenging for many of the actors to rely on vocal tone and inflection rather than facial expression, but I think the challenge only adds to the enjoyment of this program.

Anyone who has seen the movie will recognize the music and sound effects. I'm thankful that NPR was able to use the sound effects and music, and that they didn't have to write a new musical score from scratch. For many fans, the music is a true star in these films, and it's used well in this audio dramatization.

I really enjoy this as a way to stimulate your imagination. In this age where there is so much visual stimulation, it's good to bring out a good audio theater producation like this, sit back with your iphone and a good sound system and let your imagination fly. You have all you need right in the story, since the characters describe what's happening, and you can fill in the rest by creating mental pictures of, for instance, what the ships might look like.

In summary, whether you're a major Star Wars fan, or you just enjoy a good story told well, you can fine value in this audio program.

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  • Paul
  • 06-22-15

Star Wars

Fantastic, fills in a few of the gaps adding to the story. A must for all Star Wars fans

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  • Simon Pell
  • 06-16-15

Great production

Amazing. Fills in some gaps from the movies. Made me feel like a kid again. Loved it.

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  • Burgess79
  • 04-06-15

Could of done with more stars

What made the experience of listening to Star Wars the most enjoyable?

The added content and some scenes told from a different angle i.e. the Death Star run at the end, concentrates on Princess Leia on Yarin 4 while all the action come in over the radio communications.

Which character – as performed by Mark Hamill and Anthony Daniels – was your favourite?

Could of done with some more stars of the film, Mark and Anthony wasn't enough, but it was recorded a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away...<br/><br/>Mark Hamill was the better of the two.

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  • dominic
  • 02-15-15

Total immersion into another world

The direction and performances are utterly compelling, you just want to listen all day long.

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  • Ben
  • 02-08-15

Great rendition but...

Great version just wish you could select not to hear beginning/end credits I each chapter. Otherwise great rendition of a classic.

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  • J. Coffey
  • 12-12-14

Classic!

Would you consider the audio edition of Star Wars to be better than the print version?

Too different to compare Star wars as a novel to the display. Both hugely enjoyable, gotta love the effects though.<br/>

Who was your favorite character and why?

Darth Vader, always has been, always will be, can't say anymore on the case.

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Well we all know that one don't we.

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  • Timothy
  • 01-29-14

An Audio Masterpiece

What did you like most about Star Wars?

Certainly a great production, adding depth and colour to an already vibrant piece. Since it cannot be said that anyone listening to this can have failed to have seen the original movies, what you have here is rather an expansion upon the established themes, more detail of plot, character and development of the whirlwind adventure that is Star Wars. <br/><br/>The background scenes, cut from the original movie, are lavishly expanded upon. From Luke's feeling of isolation amongst the earthy farmhand companions of his youth, to Leia's burgeoning association with rebellion and the double life it entails, to Han's shady past, all are further wrought out in entertaining, touching and exciting scenes.<br/><br/>I would recommend this production to anyone who enjoyed the adventure, drama, and sheer wonder of Star Wars.

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  • Mrs
  • 04-14-13

star wars a new hope

am a new member so the 1st book I went for is my all time fav star wars .I like the audible book because it has so much more story to hear you just get drag into the story .The best part of the story is the starting part as you get an insight in luke life on tatooine and how it will change for all time .You can put you head phones on and close your eyes and think your there with all luke ups and downs .so keep up the good work and I intend to get lots more books from your site and will tell all my friends

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  • Pottery Debs
  • 04-13-13

Disappointed, as I wanted to like it.

I genuinely love Star Wars, the original movie, sometimes titled "a new hope", and was really pleased to see this audio book title for sale. I noticed that it was an audio book version of a radio serial, which had aired very successfully on NPR, which appeared to be a point in the audio book's favour. Unfortunately, it really, really, isn't. There is a quite lengthy introduction, both musically and as voice over to each episode, and having to hear each time that the radio adaptation was 'based upon stories, characters and situations created by George Lucas' quickly became irritating. Hearing a little plot synopsis at the start of each episode is fine for a radio serial, but again, as an audio book, it annoyed me.



Most surprising of all, the lovely music of John Williams is so overused that it feels like padding, between relatively short snatches of action. The incidental music at the same time as dialogue irritated me, as it distracted me from the dialogue.



In the interests of balance, I would add that the voice performances are fine, and it was nice to hear Mark Hamill and Anthony Daniels reprise their roles, but the actor playing Han Solo just didn't sound quite right to my ears, he was a bit too 'american cowboy'.



I eventually got irritated enough with the audio book to skip to the end to hear the rebel alliance battle against the death star, which was hugely disappointing and anti climactic, perhaps because its just such a visual sequence, it was never going to translate well to audio.



In synopsis then, I am disappointed, perhaps because I expected too much that the audio presentation just couldn't deliver.



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  • Justan
  • 04-09-13

A must for star wars fans!

If you love star wars then you're sure to enjoy this. Yes, I agree with one of the earlier reviews that the opening credits are quite long but you soon forget about them once the adaptation begins. Listening to the familiar voices of Mark Hammil and Anthony Daniels really immerses you back into the world if star wars again. Not being restricted to screen, this really let's your imagination open up to the complete story.

Overall a highly recommended listen.