The Star Wars Holiday Special, directed by Steve Binder, is a two-hour television special (including commercials) set in the fictional Star Wars galaxy and was the first official Star Wars spinoff produced. It was broadcast in its entirety in the United States only once, on Friday, November 17, 1978 on CBS-TV from 8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time (EST). In the story, Chewbacca and Han Solo visit Kashyyyk, Chewbacca's home world, to celebrate Life Day. Along the way, they are pursued by agents of the Galactic Empire who are searching for rebels on the planet. The special introduces three members of Chewbacca's family: his father Attichitcuk, his wife Mallatobuck, and his son Lumpawarrump.
The main storyline of the film, which occurs two years after the Battle of Yavin (2 ABY), takes place on Kashyyyk. During the film, scenes also take place in outer space and in spacecraft including the Millennium Falcon and an Imperial Star Destroyer. The variety-show segments and cartoon introduce a few other locales, such as a cantina on the desert planet of Tatooine and a gooey, reddish ocean planet known as Panna.
The program also features brief appearances by other Star Wars characters, including Luke Skywalker, C-3PO, R2-D2, Darth Vader, Han Solo and Princess Leia Organa (who sings the film's "theme song", set to the music of John Williams's Star Wars theme, near the end). The program also features a cartoon produced by Toronto-based Nelvana that officially introduces the bounty hunter Boba Fett.
The film is notorious for its negative reception. Anthony Daniels in a documentary promoting the worldwide tour of Star Wars: In Concert notes with a laugh the Star Wars Universe includes "The horrible Holiday Special that nobody talks about". George Lucas had limited involvement with the film's production, and he was unhappy with the results. David Acomba, a classmate of Lucas's at USC film school, had been selected to direct the special, but he chose to leave the project, a decision supported by Lucas. The special has never been re-aired or officially released on video
Generally, The Star Wars Holiday Special has received a large amount of criticism, both from Star Wars fans and the general public. David Hofstede, author of What Were They Thinking?: The 100 Dumbest Events in Television History, ranked the holiday special at number one, calling it "the worst two hours of television ever." Shepard Smith, a news anchor for the Fox News Channel, referred to it as a "'70s train wreck, combining the worst of Star Wars with the utter worst of variety television." Actor Phillip Bloch explained on a TV Land special entitled The 100 Most Unexpected TV Moments, that the special "just wasn't working. It was just so surreal." On the same program, Ralph Garman, a voice actor for the show Family Guy, explained that "The Star Wars Holiday Special is one of the most infamous television programs in history. And it's so bad that it actually comes around to good again, but passes it right up."
This region-free DVD-R is in NTSC format and will play on most PS2 systems and DVD Players made since 2000, and comes in a FULL SIZE DVD case, with cover art and track listing.
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