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Encyclopedia > Star Wars opening crawl
An example of the famous Star Wars roll-up. This one is from The Empire Strikes Back.
A comparison of how the opening for A New Hope has been altered to include 'Episode IV'.

The Star Wars opening crawl is the famous opening to Star Wars. Image File history File links ESBOpeningCrawl. ... Image File history File links ESBOpeningCrawl. ... Image File history File links Opening_Crawl. ... Image File history File links Opening_Crawl. ...


Each of the six Star Wars films begins with nearly identical openings, in which the text "A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away..." is displayed, followed by the Star Wars logo over a field of stars against a black background. A subsequent slow zoom-out reveals the film's episode number and subtitle (in all-capital letters), followed by a two to three-paragraph summary of the events which describes the situation immediately prior to the events of the film. This article is about the series. ... Star Wars Galaxy may mean: Star Wars Galaxies (often abbreviated SWG or Galaxies by fans) is a Star Wars themed MMORPG platform for Microsoft Windows PCs, developed by Sony Online Entertainment and published by LucasArts. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... In books and other works, a subtitle is an explanatory or alternate title. ...


Some words or names are in all-capital letters to stress their importance to the story (such as "DEATH STAR" in A New Hope, "GALACTIC EMPIRE" in Return of the Jedi, and "ARMY OF THE REPUBLIC" in Attack of the Clones). There are no words emphasized by all-caps in any of the odd-numbered movies. The text is in simple, yellow, sans-serif type, and it is pitched at a sharp angle. The text scrolls upward into the distance, toward a horizon located just below the top of the screen. In a trademark of the film series, each title crawl ends with a four-dot ellipsis except for Episode VI which ends with a three-dot ellipsis. The first Death Star, with TIE Fighters flying from it. ... This movie poster for Star Wars depicts many of the films important elements, such as Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, Han Solo, X-Wing and Y-Wing fighters Star Wars, retitled Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope in 1981 (see note at Title,) is the original (and in chronological... The Galactic Empire is the main antagonist in the Star Wars universe. ... Movie poster Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, is a science fiction film that debuted in 1983, and re-released with changes in 1997 and 2004. ... Clonetroopers at the Battle of Geonois. ... Film poster for Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (2002) is the fifth Star Wars science fiction movie released and the second part of the prequel trilogy which began with Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. ... In typography, serifs are the small features at the end of strokes within letters. ... Distinguish from ellipse. ...


Two typefaces were used in the crawl: News Gothic bold for the main body of the crawl and Episode number, and Univers light ultra condensed for the title of the film. Recent editions of Apple Computer's iMovie software feature a similar title effect called "Far, Far Away" in reference to Star Wars. Recent Editions of Windows Movie Maker also include a text effect in reference to Star Wars. In typography, a typeface is a co-ordinated set of character designs, which usually comprises an alphabet of letters, a set of numerals and a set of punctuation marks. ... News Gothic is a realist sans-serif typeface designed by Morris Fuller Benton, and released by the American Type Founders (ATF) in 1908. ... This article is about a typeface; for information about similarly spelled topics, see Universe (disambiguation). ... Apple Inc. ... iMovie is video editing software, created by Apple Computer as part of their iLife suite of applications for the Macintosh, that allows users to edit their own home movies. ... Windows Movie Maker is for gay people that is included in recent versions of Microsoft Windows. ...


The roll-up (alternatively called the "crawl") is a homage to Flash Gordon serials of the 1930s and 1940s, which Star Wars creator George Lucas enjoyed as a child.[1] It is also for this reason that many of the subtitles of the six films have a "pulpy" sound to them or are reminiscent of the Gordon serials. Flash Gordon is a science fiction comic strip originally drawn by Alex Raymond, first published on January 7, 1934. ... This article is about serials in fiction. ... It has been suggested that Amanda Lucas be merged into this article or section. ... Flynns Detective Fiction from 1941. ...


In the widescreen (or letterbox) versions of the Star Wars films, each line of the opening crawl text appears directly in its entirety from the bottom of the screen. In the fullscreen (or pan and scan) versions, the sides of each line of opening crawl text are visible only after that line reaches the center of the screen. Though each crawl is roughly similar, the individual films contain some differences in their presentation. For instance, in Episode II: Attack of the Clones, the camera angle tilts upwards after the text finishes, rather than downwards as seen in all of the five other films. The inner box (green) is the format used in most pre-1952 films and pre-widescreen television. ... A 2. ... This article needs cleanup. ... A 2. ...

Contents

Origin

George Lucas in an interview in 2005 described how the final phrasing of the roll-up in Star Wars came about. "The crawl is such a hard thing because you have to be careful that you're not using too many words that people don't understand. It's like a poem. I showed the very first crawl to a bunch of friends of mine in the 1970s. It went on for six paragraphs with four sentences each. Brian De Palma was there...". De Palma helped to edit the text into the form used in the film[2] This is a list of film-related events in 2005. ... Brian De Palma (born James Giacinto DePalma on September 11, 1940 in Newark, New Jersey) is a prolific, and controversial American film director. ...


Lucas has stated that the opening crawl is inspired by the same opening crawl that can be seen at the beginning of each episode of the original Buck Rogers film serial that inspired Lucas to write much of the Star Wars saga.[1] According to Dennis Muren (who worked on all six films), on the audio commentary track of the DVD release of the original Star Wars, the roll-ups on the "original trilogy" films: A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, were accomplished with physical models laid out on the floor. Muren says the models were approximately two feet wide and six feet long. The crawl effect was accomplished with the camera moving longitudinally along the model. It was, says Muren, difficult and time-consuming to achieve a smooth scrolling effect. Poster for Buck Rogers serial, 1939 Buck Rogers is a fictional pulp character that began in 1928 as Anthony Rogers, the hero of two novellas by Philip Francis Nowlan published in the magazine Amazing Stories. ... Dennis Muren (born November 1, 1946) is an American film special effects artist, most notable for his work on the films of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. ... A major selling point of DVD video is that its storage capacity allows for a wide variety of extra features in addition to the feature film itself. ... DVD (also known as Digital Versatile Disc or, incorrectly, Digital Video Disc) is an optical disc storage media format that can be used for data storage, including movies with high video and sound quality. ... Return of the Jedi is the third film of the original trilogy. ... This movie poster for Star Wars depicts many of the films important elements, such as Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, Han Solo, X-Wing and Y-Wing fighters Star Wars, retitled Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope in 1981 (see note at Title,) is the original (and in chronological... Movie poster Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back is the sequel to the first released Star Wars movie, and the second film released in the original trilogy. ... Movie poster Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, is a science fiction film that debuted in 1983, and re-released with changes in 1997 and 2004. ...


With the advent of computer-generated graphics, the "prequel trilogy" films: The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith, the roll-ups' effect was achieved much more quickly. However, because nobody had taken notes on how the original ones were accomplished, the design team had to rewatch and piece together the elements to make the new opening crawl. Computer-generated imagery (CGI) is the application of the field of computer graphics (or more specifically, 3D computer graphics) to special effects. ... Revenge of the Sith is the third film of the prequel trilogy. ... Film poster for Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace is a 1999 film by George Lucas starring Liam Neeson, Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman, and Jake Lloyd. ... Film poster for Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (2002) is the fifth Star Wars science fiction movie released and the second part of the prequel trilogy which began with Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. ... Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith is the third episode of the Star Wars film series (but the sixth film to be produced), to be released on Thursday, May 19, 2005. ...


The 2004 DVD special edition versions of the original trilogy were later updated with computer-generated roll-ups as part of their restoration and enhancement. The following are partial lists of changes in Star Wars re-releases. ...


Parodies

The Mel Brooks film Spaceballs opens with a similar, but much more humorous crawl, with gags such as "unbeknownst to her, but knownst [sic] to us". At the end, in small letters, it reads "If you can read this, you don't need glasses". The science fiction-comedy television show Red Dwarf used an opening crawl in episodes Backwards and Dimension Jump. Both feature similar, humorous crawls, the former scrolling too fast to be read without freeze-frame. Mel Brooks (born Melvin Kaminsky on May 9, 1926) is an Academy Award-winning American actor, writer, director and producer best known as a creator of broad film farces and comedy parodies. ... Spaceballs is a science fiction spoof film written by, directed by, and starring Mel Brooks. ... This article or section needs additional references or sources to improve its verifiability. ... An artists impression of a planet in orbit around a red dwarf According to the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram, a red dwarf star is a small and relatively cool star, of the main sequence, either late K or M spectral type. ... Backwards was the first epsiode to air in the third series of Red Dwarf. ... Dimension Jump was the fifth epsiode to air in the fourth series of Red Dwarf. ...


Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me opens with a similar crawl. It is accompanied by a voiceover. Airplane II: The Sequel begins with a crawl of the text of an erotic story that is "broken" like glass by a space shuttle flying through it. The Bugs Bunny-Road Runner Movie uses a crawl to set up the clips of the shorts featured. The crawl reads "A long long long long long...time ago, in a galaxy far, far, far, far, far...away." The film REVENGE OF THE NERDS II: NERDS IN PARADISE opens with a crawl in homage to STAR WARS. Austin Powers: the Spy Who Shagged Me is the second film in the Austin Powers series started with Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery and continued in Austin Powers in Goldmember. ... NASAs Space Shuttle, officially called Space Transportation System (STS), is the United States governments current manned launch vehicle. ... The Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Movie is a 1979 Looney Tunes film with a compilation of classic Warner Bros. ...


The sneak peak of the unfinished game Space Quest VII: return to Roman Numerals had a similar crawl with a voiceover. The difference was that this one was being typed out as it was being spoken. Those who attended Nintendo's online Camp Hyrule 2006 were greeted with an introductory opening crawl sequence. Space Quest is a series of six science fiction computer games that follow the adventures of a hapless janitor named Roger Wilco, as he campaigns through the galaxy for truth, justice and really clean floors. ... Camp Hyrule is an annual, week-long virtual camp sponsored by Nintendo of America, and is Nintendos largest official online function. ...


Episode IV Opening Crawl

When originally released in 1977, the first film was simply titled Star Wars, as Lucas was not certain if he would follow the film with a sequel. Following The Empire Strikes Back, the film was re-released in 1981 with the subtitle 'Episode IV: A New Hope'. The original version, without the subtitle, was not released until the 2006 limited edition DVDs. The following are partial lists of changes in Star Wars re-releases. ...


Notes and references

  1. ^ a b Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith DVD commentary
  2. ^ Pearlman, Cindy (May 15, 2005). The Force. Chicago Sun-Times.

External links

  • The official Star Wars website
  • Episode III: How It Begins
  • Episode I: At First Glance - article about the creation of the opening crawl for Episode I

 
 

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