Han Solo crossing his arms


The Star Wars 4k77 Project, Explained

Since 1997, director George Lucas has altered the theatrical cuts of the original "Star Wars" trilogy many times, including new audio mixes, added CGI, and entirely new scenes.

The changes Lucas made over the years were controversial, especially due to the holistic erosion of the original cuts. Each of the new editions replaced the one prior.

Fan campaigns like Project 4k77 have sought to restore the theatrical cuts of the original trilogy. Today, they're the only way for people to see the original releases.

Project 4k77 is an effort that began in 2016. It used original film print scans to create a version of the first "Star Wars" cut that would look serviceable on modern 4k screens.

After 4k77 was completed, yielding a finished product that's close to the genuine artifact, the group began working on Project 4k83 and 4k80 to restore the entire trilogy.

These projects have been celebrated for their historical significance, but because the projects are unsanctioned by Lucasfilm, their legality is in a constant state of limbo.

Most fans still hope for a proper release of the theatrical cuts from Disney itself, but like Lucas, Disney seems hesitant to put out multiple versions of the same movies.