Star Wars: Although the much-anticipated Star Wars DVD won't hit stores for almost six months, retailers are already experiencing vast consumer demand for the set, with preorders reaching record levels amid reports of extensive extras on the DVDs.
Supplementals being touted include commentary by creator George Lucas and actress Carrie Fisher, a feature-length documentary, multiple featurettes and an Xbox videogame demo.
After opening preorders on March 30, Amazon.com last week reported that the Star Wars DVD set, which is scheduled for retail on Sept. 21, had already outsold expectations.
"Based on an undisclosed number of sales, the Star Wars DVD set is so far the most requested DVD by our customers of all time," said a spokeswoman for the online retailer. Both Amazon.com and Trans World Entertainment's FYE Web site have posted details on the DVD set's long list of special features, which 20th Century Fox officials declined to confirm.
The FYE Web site reports that each disc in the set will include a commentary by Lucas, Fisher, sound designer Ben Burtt and cameraman Dennis Muren. A fourth bonus disc will include a 150-minute feature-length documentary about the making of Star Wars (directed by Kevin Burns, as reported in the March issue of VB sister publication DVD Exclusive); a 30-minute featurette about the evolution of the Star Wars characters with a still/video gallery of artwork and classic scenes from all three movies for each major character; a 20-minute featurette on the influence Star Wars has wielded on moviemaking during the past two decades; a 10-minute featurette about the creation, filming and cinematic influence of lightsabers; and a 20-minute featurette showcasing the opening of each Star Wars movie and its cultural reach.
The bonus disc also includes a demo of the Star Wars Battlefront Xbox game; teasers and trailers from the original and 1997 theatrical releases of each movie; TV spots from the original and 1997 theatrical releases; a behind-the-scenes preview of Star Wars: Episode III; a stills gallery of posters, artwork and photos; and a DVD-ROM link to the Star Wars Web site.
20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, which is releasing the movies on DVD, declined to confirm the details on special features, as did officials at Trans World.
"Neither Lucasfilm nor Fox has released any information on the special features on the upcoming Star Wars trilogy DVD release," said Fox senior VP Steve Feldstein. "Speculating on Star Wars films has long been a favorite pastime, whether they be theatrical, VHS or now DVD releases."
Best Buy, Barnes & Noble.com, Target Stores and Wal-Mart Stores also are accepting preorders for the DVD release but have not posted details on special features.