Watch the Revenge of the Jedi trailer from 1982
You may have once heard that what we know as the Return of the Jedi was once known as Revenge of the Jedi. Indeed, posters were made and sent out to movie theatres that featured Darth Vader’s large visage with Luke fighting Vader positioned just about the film’s title.
What this author only just learned was that a ‘trailer’ of sorts was released for the film and it accompanied re-screenings of the first two movies.
It’s a combination of words, music and still images taken from the movie i.e. there is no action in it. Have a look:
Did you pick up that Han Solo was featured hanging out with Luke and was also tied up? Given Han Solo was left frozen in carbonite at the end of Empire, that was a pretty big movie spoiler right there for anyone in the theatre! Apparently this trailer was shown in the United Kingdom in 1982.
We understand that George Lucas changed his mind out the word Revenge as he felt that Jedi themselves would not actually seek to gain revenge.
In the end, Return sounds more hopeful, more triumphant and indeed it’s a better story when you consider the last act of the film is about Vader’s journey and how in saving Luke from the Emperor, he fulfils the prophecy about him being the Chosen One and in doing so, becomes a Jedi again.
Lucas clearly did like the word Revenge as he used it in the third prequel film title, Revenge of the Sith.