The Empire Strikes Back premiered on this day in 1980

Originally published at: The Empire Strikes Back premiered on this day in 1980 | Boing Boing


[reposted by popular demand]



The IMDb differs:

Says the premiere was May 17. The release to more theaters was May 21. (Assuming the IMDb is correct. I suspect SW’s fan base would probably keep this relatively easily verifiable info accurate.)


It was indeed May 17, first at the Kennedy Center, but that same evening in Beckman Auditorium at Caltech.


Empire Strikes Back is considered the gold standard for Star Wars films.

Yeah, I used to think so too.

Time, distance, age and perspective have led me to now believe that the original movie is actually the best of the main-line-series / trilogy films.

(That’s Star Wars: Episode 4: A New Hope, just to be clear.)

I have also, however, come to the conclusion that the best Star Wars movie, by far, is Rogue One.

I have no interest whatsoever in defending this opinion, or arguing the point, but I’m confident there’s at least one person out there who agrees.


I like all 3 original movies but I hated the end of Empire for the same reason I hated the ending in Wrath Of Kahn.

At the time there was no internet so you just had to speculate with friends and family and then just wait to find out.

Are they really dead and gone or do we get them back?

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Got them back, but the friends are dead, including one I met in the Empire line-up. sigh


I hate to tap the like heart on posts like that.

That’s sad.

Did you read the article? The writer actually builds arguments against R1.

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egads, i messed up a midterm exam by staying up for a 3AM showing of that sucker (“No extra credit points for scribbling…what is this? someone is someone’s father!?”)

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Agreed! And I saw Star Wars during its first run, too.

Rogue One is the best of the lot. I’ll sit through the entire thing just for the incredible last 5 minutes of the film.


I’m going to disagree and say that the original trilogy is better, but Rogue One is the best of the Disney made movies. Even though I figured out how the movie would end about half way through, I still found myself caring about the characters.

Still, I think ESB will always be my favorite. Every winter I’d prey for Hoth levels of snow fall!


Rogue One is great, I like the whole movie but that last fight is horrific. Vader is utterly terrifying.


The carbonite freeze scene has superb cinematography. The lighting, the music, the kiss. It was also the first time I was exposed to the idea of a “cliffhanger” ending.


Test audiences thought the original ending (where dead people stay dead) was too depressing

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