One of Disney Plus’ biggest exclusives for Star Wars fans is no longer an exclusive: the original Star Wars trilogy, the prequel trilogy, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and Rogue One will be available to purchase in 4K UHD for the first time.
Lucasfilm revealed the new Blu-ray sets in an announcement post for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’s digital and physical release date. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker will be available to purchase in HD and 4K Ultra HD via Movies Anywhere on March 17th, and available physically two weeks later in 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, and DVD on March 31st.
Each of the eight Skywalker Saga titles — A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, Revenge of the Sith, The Force Awakens — will be available to purchase individually or as a box set. Those films will also be released on March 31st. The box set also includes Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which wasn’t included in Lucasfilm’s roundup as it previously received a 4K UHD release. Rogue One won’t be in the boxset as it’s not part of the Skywalker Saga, but Lucasfilm noted that it’s available to purchase individually.
One Disney Plus’ biggest selling points for Star Wars fans was the 4K UHD restoration of the original films and the prequel trilogy. The formats, which also came with Dolby Atmos-enabled sound quality, were exclusive to the streaming service. Although it’s rare for Disney to make an exclusive part of its streaming service available to purchase elsewhere, a box set like the Skywalker Saga is a good selling point for the company. The 4K versions of the original trilogy will be the same ones seen on Disney Plus, not the first cuts fans might be hoping for. That means more “Maclunkey” for buyers.
What is interesting is that Lucasfilm didn’t specify in its announcement when Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker will hit Disney Plus. It seems unlikely that Disney is tangled up in pay one windows — an industry term that refers to a licensing agreements between a studio like Disney and a network like Starz, which gives Starz the rights to play movies like The Rise of Skywalker exclusively once the film leaves theaters. Disney made a number of deals ahead of Disney Plus’ release to ensure that it had as many of its original films on Disney Plus as it could before the service launched in November. Instead, it seems more likely that Disney wants fans to purchase the DVD and Blu-ray versions of the film before making the movie available on Disney Plus. A Lucasfilm representative told The Verge there are no details about that release date at this time.
For now, the digital and physical versions will have to suffice. Listed below are the special features that come with the physical and digital versions of The Rise of Skywalker.
- The Skywalker Legacy – The story lives forever in this feature-length documentary that charts the making of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
- Pasaana Pursuit: Creating the Speeder Chase – Dive into the making of the movie’s epic landspeeder chase and discover how this spectacular sequence was brought to the screen.
- Aliens in the Desert – See what it took to create the Pasaana desert scenes, from the sheer scale and complexity of the shoot to its colorful details.
- D-O: Key to the Past – Explore the ship that connects Rey to the mystery of her missing parents and get to know the galaxy’s newest, irresistible droid.
- Warwick & Son – Warwick Davis, who played Wicket in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, dons the Ewok costume once more; this time joined by his son Harrison.
- Cast of Creatures – The team behind the film’s memorable creatures reveal the puppetry, makeup, prosthetics and digital magic that bring them to life!
- The Maestro’s Finale – Composer John Williams reflects on his body of work for the Star Wars saga and shares insights on scoring Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
Update February 19th, 12:40pm ET: The story has been updated to note that each of the eight Star Wars titles will be available to purchase individually.
Update February 20th, 8:15AM ET: The story has been updated to note that Star Wars: The Last Jedi wasn’t included in Lucasfilm’s announcement as it previously received a 4K UHD release. It will still be in the boxset as part of the Skywalker Saga.
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