Star Wars: Episode III: Starwars.com is set to redefine the online Star Wars experience with Hyperspace. It continues a tradition of innovation that began in 1996, when a Special Edition series, "Anatomy of a Dewback," pioneered behind-the-scenes online video. In 1998, came the first premiere of a movie trailer on the web with Episode I. Most recently, an award-winning web documentary series and the George Lucas select photo series from Episode II brought the unique community of fans ever deeper into the adventure, excitement and creation of the Star Wars saga.

Now, in 2003, principal photography for Episode III is about to begin, and starwars.com is looking to bring fans even closer to the action than ever before. On June 10, visitors to the official Star Wars site will discover a fresh, all-new look, designed to bring a wealth of Star Wars entertainment to core and casual fan alike. The launch will also mark the debut of the official Episode III section featuring new art, cast and crew updates, and a continuation of starwars.com's unique brand of on-going coverage for the final Star Wars film.

For Star Wars fans who want even more, Lucas Online is pleased to introduce starwars.com Hyperspace, an extensive subscription service that presents exclusive content, new features and a wealth of personalization options that are available only to subscribers.

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"Five years ago, we were the first entertainment site to premiere a trailer on the Web, which set a new standard for the industry - and was the biggest downloading event in history," said Jim Ward, Vice President of Marketing for Lucasfilm Ltd. and head of Lucas Online. "What we're premiering on June 10 is the ultimate Star Wars experience on the Web. We're using technology and innovation to bring fans closer to the Star Wars universe and - more importantly - to expand the definition of Internet entertainment."

"This is the content our biggest fans have been asking us for, and now we're able to provide it to them while maintaining an overall site that's accessible to all levels of Star Wars fans," Ward said. "No movie-themed entertainment site has ever offered anything like this - but no film series has maintained such a strong fan base for a quarter of a century the way that Star Wars has."

From June 5 to June 9, all visitors to starwars.com will be able to get a free "sneak preview" of the new service. After the preview period, a subscription to Hyperspace will cost just $19.95 for an entire year's worth of access to the subscriber-only areas of starwars.com. Access to the main starwars.com site, and all the content and activities fans have come to know and love, remains free to all fans.

Hyperspace members can look forward to a Star Wars experience unlike any other with benefits including:

* Episode III Set Diary - see what it's like to be on the set all summer long through this daily insider's journal

* Episode III Webcam - spy on the cast and crew as they make the new movie at Fox Studios Australia

* The often-requested, never-before-seen Episode II deleted sequence "Jedi Assault on the Droid Control Ship" in its original rough-cut form

* Photoreceptor - a new photo series featuring rare and first-look photos and artwork pulled from deep within the Lucasfilm archives from all five films

* Classic Bantha Tracks - a nostalgic look at the rare and treasured fan magazine from the 1970s and 80s

* First online availability of the upcoming "Clone Wars" animated series

* Live online talks with Star Wars celebrities, including cast and crew members from Episode III

* A Star Wars-themed email address

* Personalization and customization features to the Cargo Bay collector's database and official message boards, including avatars and personal profile pages

* A new newsletter, contests, special offers and more

* Hyperspace members will see starwars.com completely AD FREE

Check out the details and watch a preview at The Official Star Wars Website! CLICK HERE

Brian B. at Movieweb
Brian B.