Most hardcore Star Wars’ fans will be aware of these deleted scenes from the original trilogy of movies, the eponymous Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980) and the Return of the Jedi (1983), but I thought they might be of interest to the more casual fan. Uploaded to YouTube early last year they feature 1080p rips of the cut scenes from the 2011 Blu-ray releases and give a great insight into the production processes behind the films. The sound-effects and score have been slightly edited to give them a more “cinematic” feel in line with the theatrical versions. Of particular interest are the scenes from the movie later retitled by the obsessive George Lucas as Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope. Around thirty-three seconds into the video clip for that film we come to what was originally a fairly lengthy series of linked scenes featuring a youthful Luke Skywalker on his home planet of Tatooine and his friendship with a character called Biggs. These take place in a dusty settlement called Tosche Station, and were taken up again further into the movie as originally scripted. Unfortunately Lucas cut most of the background scenes on the desert world for reasons of narrative pacing, and with them went the Luke-Biggs relationship. I always thought this was a real shame because the shorts clips, when they finally made it out onto VHS, and of course many years later onto the internet, actually gave some substance to Skywalker’s character which was probably the weakest of the big four in the original 1977 film.
Biggs, played by the unlucky actor, Garrick Hagon, had an afterlife of sorts, becoming Biggs Darklighter in a whole series of fan-fiction and some authorised works (in the so-called Star Wars Legends or Expanded Universe), not to mention some homoerotic literature of dubious quality (though maybe not without merit). In the 1997 special edition release of Star Wars the scene featuring a meeting between Luke and Biggs in the rebel base was restored by Lucas and his team, though in the context of the edited storyline it made little sense. It was only with knowledge of the original deleted clips that one could understand the importance of the two old friends from Tatooine greeting each other on the eve of the great battle with the Empire.
I’ve included the deleted scenes from all three movies of the 1970s’ an ’80s’ trilogy below, plus a feature documentary, “Blast It Biggs! Where Are You?!“. Enjoy!