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May 25, 1983 (United States)

Return of the Jedi (also known as Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi) is a 1983 American epic space opera film directed by Richard Marquand. The screenplay is by Lawrence Kasdan and George Lucas from a story by Lucas, who was also the executive producer. It is the third installment in the original Star Wars trilogy, the third film to be produced, and the sixth film in the "Skywalker saga". It takes place one year after The Empire Strikes Back. The film stars Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams, Anthony Daniels, David Prowse, Kenny Baker, Peter Mayhew and Frank Oz.

In the film, the Galactic Empire, under the direction of the Emperor, is constructing a second Death Star in order to crush the Rebel Alliance once and for all. Since the Emperor plans to personally oversee the final stages of its construction, the Rebel Fleet launches a full-scale attack on the Death Star in order to prevent its completion and kill the Emperor, effectively bringing an end to his hold over the galaxy. Meanwhile, Luke Skywalker, now a Jedi Knight, struggles to bring his father Darth Vader back to the light side of the Force.

Steven Spielberg, David Lynch and David Cronenberg were considered to direct the project before Marquand signed on as director. The production team relied on Lucas' storyboards during pre-production. While writing the shooting script, Lucas, Kasdan, Marquand, and producer Howard Kazanjian spent two weeks in conference discussing ideas to construct it. Kazanjian's schedule pushed shooting to begin a few weeks early to allow Industrial Light & Magic more time to work on the film's effects in post-production. Filming took place in England, California, and Arizona from January to May 1982.

The film was released in theaters on May 25, 1983, six years to the day of the release of the first film, receiving positive reviews, although many felt that it did not match the cinematic heights of its predecessors. It grossed $374 million during its initial theatrical run, becoming the highest-grossing film of 1983. Several re-releases and revisions to the film have followed over the decades, which has also brought its total gross to $475 million. Following the release of the film, two trilogies were produced: the prequel trilogy, which consists Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace (1999), Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones (2002), and Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith (2005); and the sequel trilogy, which comprises Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens (2015), Star Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Jedi (2017), and Star Wars: Episode IX - The Rise of Skywalker (2019).

Storyline

Also See

Movie Trailer

Sound Effects Used

Other Audio Used

  • 20th Century Fox Fanfare (1980 John Williams Version)

Image Gallery

Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983)/Image Gallery

Audio Samples

The reversed variant of SKYWALKER, WHOOSH - SINGLE SWISH as heard in the movie.

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