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Revenge of the Sith - The Spence Edit

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spence

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Hey everyone. Yeah, I know. ANOTHER prequel edit. Allow me, as usual, to explain.

I still consider The Phantom Edit and Attack of the Phantom to be the pinnacles of the fanediting idea. Sure, maybe it's not the best picture/sound quality, but in terms of greatly improving a film, he nailed it on both accounts. Yet, he never did an Episode III edit. There have been some other edits, sure, but none of them really have that feel that his films have. Most prequel edits seem to come to a place of either hatred for the film or over-appreciation of the film, and tend to be unbalanced (this isn't all of them, and its just my opinion.) Frankly, I haven't found an ROTS edit that I feel I can put next to those Phantom Editor versions.

So I tried to use his principals and points of view to create a Revenge of the Sith edit I could watch along with Phantom Editor's prior versions. It won't feel exactly like a Phantom Editor edit of course, as it's from my point of view which will always be different, and also he is a much better editor than me. But I feel like I can watch this version and confidently enjoy the film.

Here's the specifics:
- Time shortened to just under 2 hrs.
- Cut little odd bits of dialogue all over the place.
- Cut any lines or scenes that I found redundant.
- Attempted to cut any unnecessary pauses, camera shots, anything that slows down the pace and momentum of the film.
- Cut the buzz droids.
- Cut the missiles sequence to get them to the Invisible Hand faster.
- Removed the first elevator sequence. They get in the elevator and arrive to fight Dooku.
- Removed Palp's little "Yeah!" thing. Not sure what that was but it's gone.
- Removed the bit where Dooku drops a piece of scaffold onto Obi-Wan.
- Removed all of R2's shenanigans.
- Added some music from KOTOR over the Jedi vs. Grievous guards sequence.
- Cut the scene where Yoda gives Anakin advice he never uses or mentions again. Because, well, he never uses it or mentions it again.
- Removed all the awkward "floating head over video game body " clone trooper sequences.
- Trimmed as much of the squaking from that bird-lizard thing as possible. Drives me nuts!
- Removed Grievous' line about being trained to use a lightsaber. It's redundant since two seconds later, he uses a lightsaber.
- Removed the silly Sergio Leone eye close ups from the Obi/Grievous fight.
- Anakin catches onto Palps being a sith lord a little faster. Because, try as Lucas might, Anakin is not retarded.
- Trimmed a little of the Grievous chase scene.
- Palps vs. Jedi sequence has been reworked. Lucas somehow made him seem gymnastic and geriatric at the same time. I lessened both of those factors. Also, the other Jedi don't go out like bitches. They now seem caught off guard.
- The entire transition to Vader sequence has been trimmed, cut and moved around to the point where I can't really remember what I actually did. But I can tell you that i feel confident in this version working much better than original version.
- Cut the mission to Mustafar being mentioned 30 bajillion times. Once is enough.
- After Order 66, there's more or less some sort of cut every 30 seconds. The pacing should've been brisk and fast and intense and it wasn't. So I tried to get that momentum going as much as I could and removed lots of dead weight.
- I cut that weird moment where Anakin's eyes appear orange. Yeah, I know, it's a Sith trait, it's happened before, blah blah blah, but the whole shot just feels like it's there so they can stick it in the trailer over the Darth Vader theme.
- I cut the entire Obi-Wan/Anakin fight into one giant, tightly paced four minute action sequence. Some of the fight was removed, but it really flows now and is a lot more exciting.
- NO PALPATING YODA FIGHT. Yoda, in my Star Wars world, does not flip around like a monkey with a lightsaber. The only time he uses his saber is to behead the two clone troopers that were going to try and kill him. I like the idea that he uses all his strength to do that, but thats about all he's capable of at his age.
- I cut all the talking between Anakin and Obi-Wan during the fight. They are Jedi and they are in fighting mode, they aren't gonna stop and talk about it. I also cut Obi announcing to Anakin he has the high ground. If his mission is to kill Anakin, and he has already said "I will do what I must" why would he announce his advantage? It just makes him appear weak.
- Removed some droid silliness. I'm all for droid silliness, but not at this moment of the film.
- Padme has no longer "lost the will to live" because that always felt like she was saying "F**k you twins, you're on your own!"
- I redid the whole "Nooooo!" thing. It's shorter, more clean, and looks better.
- I removed any reference to Qui-Gon and new training and all that stuff. It was half-baked, not very well thought out, and it's too much new info too late in the film.
- I did not add any deleted scenes into the film, as i didn't find any of them necessary or particularly helpful.

So yeah, some things people have done before, some things that they have not. I'm pretty proud of this one. It started as tinkering around and became a full out edit with a lot of thought behind it. I hope you all enjoy it, i'll have it posted soon.

Maybe downloadable from Fanedit.info
 

TV's Frink

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Cool! I, for one, always welcome more prequel edits. They are what brought me here.

One question: will/can the edit have 5.1 audio?

And I guess another question: how about subtitles? I have to admit that since i have no fanediting experience, I have no idea how difficult either of these things are, but they really raise the bar for me.
 

spence

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ac3 5.1 but no subtitles. I honestly have never mastered that art.
 

AvP

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moved to IN-THE-WORKS untill available.
 

eldiablosuizo

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I believe that Attack of the Phantom is one of the best DVD's ever. I love the end product but what I love more is the commentary. Please tell me you could do a commentary behind all of the decisions for the DVD.
 

spence

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ive been toying with the idea of a commentary. we shall see.
 

spence

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I also forgot to mention that I cut the single mention of the midichlorians out.

I've had so much fun editing this, I'm starting to think of doing all of the prequels. I know there's like five bajillion prequel versions, but I think it would be personally a lot of fun. Especially since I can't finish Force Unleashed till this downloadable content level comes out.
 

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Sounds like this might become the best cut of RotS, in my opinion. I agree with you on almost all the cuts made. In my dream cut, though, the entire Yoda/Sidious fight would be removed, but I guess many would disagree with me on that. As for doing all the prequels, yes!, please do. I've yet to see a prequel edit I'm 100% satisfied with. The Phantom Editors' are of course great, and are the only versions I watch for the moment, but they, too, are somewhat lacking, especially Episode I. Go for it!
 

spence

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Yes, in a perfect world I would remove the Sidious/Yoda fight as well. Unfortunately I haven't found a way to make it work. It just sort of makes Yoda looks like a bit of a wimp, making no effort to fight Sidious but telling Obi-Wan to hunt down Anakin. If you have a way of making this work, I'm all ears!
 

Gaith

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Simple. Just modify the opening crawl to include:

Meanwhile, the JEDI MASTER Yoda has entered into his reproductive cycle, and will lack any physical prowess for several weeks.
:lol:

I commend you for putting a lot of thought into this, but I doubt that ROTS can be saved to my personal satisfaction. The plot is too non-sensical (Anakin is able to wipe out the Jedi Temple all by himself; Obi-Wan and Yoda separate and vanish, with no thought of helping the rest of the Order 66 survivors), and the long-awaited Mustafar duel is ineptly edited, totally lacking the grace that the previous two prequels' duels had. I suspect this is why the Phantom Editor hasn't done a cut himself.

I would be interested in a cut of Attack of the Phantom, however, without the Yoda-Dooku fight. The FE says in his commentary that he was inclined to cut it, but feared SW fans wouldn't stand for it. If you were to remove Yoda's fights from both movies, however, that could be quite powerful, and help bring the character back to his roots. (I have no problem with Yoda fighting per se, but I don't think he should use a lightsaber. Like the ROTJ-era Palps, he should do it all mentally, while he hobbles along on his cane.)
 

spence

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See ideally I would only show Yoda fighting when he defends himself from Order 66. Imagine never seeing Yoda ever use his lightsaber, then all of a sudden he leaps in the air and beheads two clone troopers. Could've been the best star wars moment ever. Oh well.

So, I found a way to cut the Sidious/Yoda fight. By moving some dialogue around from other scenes, I have made it seem that Yoda says "Destroy Skywalker we must." instead of "Destroy the Sith we must." Then Obi-Wan says "I cannot kill Anakin" and Yoda explains to him that he isn't Anakin anymore. It seems to work just fine. And I've recut the fight to get some flow going, I agree it's not a very well edited fight, and it's way way waaaay too long. So I cut it down. It's now a solid 5 minutes, still pretty long, but there's no interruptions and the whole thing flows much better.

So yeah, add that one to the list. NO SIDOUS/YODA FIGHT! I always found this fight to be a bit comical. Two old geezers, one completely CGI, throwing shit at each other while Palps laughs like an idiot. It's just silly and it interrupts the fight that we all really want to see, and in terms of storyline it's rather pointless and adds nothing. So it's got the chop!

I also removed a few shots here and there of ships either taking off or landing. I don't need to see every ship put down landing gear and swoop to the ground. That small ship Obi-Wan is in is flying toward that big ship that Yoda is in. We can probably piece together that he at some point landed.

The film is now clocking in at 1 hr. 53 min. including about 10 minutes of credits. So I'd say the pace will be greatly improved!

And yeah, this is just too much fun. Episode 1 and 2 by Spence will follow.
 

JasonN

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spence said:
So yeah, add that one to the list. NO SIDOUS/YODA FIGHT! I always found this fight to be a bit comical. Two old geezers, one completely CGI, throwing shit at each other while Palps laughs like an idiot. It's just silly and it interrupts the fight that we all really want to see, and in terms of storyline it's rather pointless and adds nothing. So it's got the chop!
I've done this exact same thing with my "SW: Shadows of the Old Republic" edit (it'll also be taken out of my next SW edit of RotS) - it looks and works wonderously, but it was a total pain in the arse to edit around (especially in the audio mix, but it worked out well in the end, I thought)
 

spence

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Yes, I also found there were parts of the Anakin/Kenobi fight that needed to be trimmed and moved around. That fight is just too damn long and rather confusing at times. They move from one location to another, then back, then who knows where. So I've made it a bit more streamlined, especially now that there are no interruptions.

I've decided that I'm going to remove Yoda fighting in any capacity from my prequel versions. I agree with gaith1, Yoda being a brave spooky ninja fighter never really sat well with me. I would rather have him as the wise old mentor, the Jedi that has already done his fighting and now, in the twilight of his long life, is the source of wisdom and advice for the younger jedi. So that's what he'll be. Except for that Clone beheading I mentioned. That will stay. I like the idea that he pushes himself to stop them, and that's all he can really do.
 

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Somewhere among all the ROTS edits around here - don't remember whose - someone modulated Anakin's voice after he turns to the Dark Side to further show how he's changing, not just in temperament but in how the Dark Side is affecting him. It also makes the transition from "Anakin voice" to "James Earl Jones voice" less abrupt for the final Darth Vader reveal scene.
 

spence

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thats a great idea. I actually tried doing some voice stuff but it didnt really sound right. I'm not much of an audio editor. If anyone wants to give this an attempt in my edit feel free.
 

Gaith

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Ziz said:
It also makes the transition from "Anakin voice" to "James Earl Jones voice" less abrupt for the final Darth Vader reveal scene.

He does catch on fire and get singed pretty badly before speaking through the helmet... not sure I agree, then, that that's an overly abrupt voice transition. :wink:
 

spence

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I'm bothered less by the transition and more by his whiny, high pitched tone toward the end of the film. If his voice could go down a half step, it would make a big difference.
 

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Call me crazy, but I always grab all the prequel edits that are available. I look forward to this one Spence, but I have to ask, does ANYONE know why the Phantom Editor never made an edit of Episode III????
 

spence

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I don't know, but I can only guess that it's sort of the epitome of everything the Phantom editor fought. It's like everything he was trying to fix Lucas put into overdrive for the third film. It's full of complete nonsensical BS. And, to be honest, I don't think the Phantom Editor could've made sense of Episode III, as nobody really could.

On the other hand, I kind of embrace that BS the same way I embrace the rest of the prequels. I know that they are crappy, especially compared to the originals but I still love them, in fact I think Phantom Menace and Revenge of the Sith are vastly superior to Return of the Jedi. So I'm happy to wade through George Lucas' half-assed plotting and BS explanations because I still kind of love it, and create something I enjoy more. So sure, I've removed some stuff that doesn't help it make sense. The Jedi temple is now completely unguarded. But I don't see how that makes less sense than like ten clone troopers guarding one particular spot that Yoda and Obi-Wan decide to attack from. It's almost like choosing the best shitty choice you can.
 
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