Topher Grace edited the Star Wars prequels into a single 85 minute film. And apparently it's awesome.

3 min read

Topher Grace is probably best known for being called a dumbass by his father in the 70’s and doing his part to help ruin Spider-Man 3, but apparently not only is he massive film geek, he is also a mean hand at the editing table.

Grace recently held a private screening of his own cut of the Star Wars prequels at his house. Yes, his own cut. He had apparently taken the nearly 7 hours of total footage, and condensed it down into a single 85 minute film, which already is no small feat.

What’s shocking though, is that apparently his cut not only manages to retain the 3 film’s full narrative, but apparently does it better than anything Lucas ever did.

Grace had recently become interested in the editing process, and when wanting to attempt his first editing project he decided to tackle something with which he was intimately familiar. He used a used a number of sources, not only the three prequels, like scenes from the original trilogy and music from the Clone Wars animated TV series. He even went to far as to create his own version of the famous opening text crawl.

He then screened the result, titled Star Wars: Episode III.5: The Editor Strikes Back, for close friends, select press and a few film makers at his house in complete secrecy.

Slashfilm was lucky enough to be present for the screening and has written up a fairly substantial beat-by-beat breakdown of Topher’s movie and exactly how he managed to accomplish this feat. Here’s a snippet of their write-up:

The opening crawl establishes that assassins have been after the queen and Jedis have been sent to intervene.  Topher’s version begins with Episode I’s climactic lightsaber fight between Darth Maul (Ray Park), Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson), and Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor), bypassing the majority of Phantom Menace completely. Starting the story in the middle of this fight was a brilliant choice. Qui-Gon’s dying request that Obi-Wan train Anakin perfectly sets up the story.

Grace’s version of the film(s) centers on Anakin’s training and friendship with Obi-Wan, and his relationship with Queen Amidala (Natalie Portman). Gone are Trade Federation blockades, the Gungan city, the whole Padmé handmaiden storyline, the explanation of midichlorians, the galactic senate and the boring politics, Anakin’s origins (a backstory which never really needed to be seen in the first place), the droid army’s attack on Naboo, and Jar Jar Binks (Ahmed Best) appears only briefly for only one line of dialogue, used as a set-up to introduce us to the Queen.

Its an interesting read and shows exactly how much fluff was filling up Lucas’ movies. Hopefully Grace eventually makes the whole thing readily available, though I don’t think that the Bearded Flannel One would approve.

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Last Updated: March 8, 2012

Kervyn Cloete

A man of many passions – but very little sleep – I’ve been geeking out over movies, video games, comics, books, anime, TV series and lemon meringues as far back as I can remember. So show up for the geeky insight, stay for the delicious pastries.

  • Sounds like this is a must-see. hopefully it gets leaked. If home-made porn can, there is hope.

    • Decembermaloy

      a “New” New Hope, or should I say, New-New Hope

  • I’m hoping it gets leaked, it sounds interesting, and wouldn’t it be surprising if Topher Grace brings balance to the Force? In your face, George Lucas!

  • Man, i’d give anything to see this. The wait for Episode IV to start at the cinema’s while these abominations are showing is the very definition of HELL.

  • Skyblue

    George Lucas is a douche… wait, he was brilliant back in the late 70’s and early 80’s but he’s seriously lost the plot since then (see what I did there?)

  • sohit234v

    Maybe he felt like he saw something worth while buried somewhere in them
    and wanted to extract those few bits. I thought the same thing while
    watching the Matrix sequels a while ago– that between the two there is
    one really good movie. I just didn’t feel like doing the editing because
    I apparently don’t care as much as Grace does. I would sort of like to
    see this cobbled together product.

  • This would be awesome to see!

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