Return of the Jedi: New Ending

image Here's something that's causing serious Star Wars fans to roll their eyes in disgust. The rumor going around is that in the upcoming DVD release of the Star Wars series, George Lucas has altered the ending of Return of the Jedi (Episode VI) so that Hayden Christensen has replaced Sebastian Shaw in the final scene that shows the ghosts of Darth Vader, Yoda, and Obi wan Kenobi standing together. As some have pointed out, this doesn't make sense because why would Darth Vader's ghost be young, while the ghosts of Yoda and Obi wan are both old? Nevertheless, there's photographic evidence to back up the rumor, as well as a film clip hosted over at If it's a hoax, someone has put a bit of effort into manufacturing these altered scenes.


Posted on Tue Aug 03, 2004


The original should not have been edited!!!!!
Posted by jenny francis  on  Thu Sep 21, 2006  at  11:08 AM
Blasphemy!!!...haha I think it is meant to be more of a spiritual thing, Anakin has returned to that last image he had of himself as Anakin...kind of like Matrix body image. Here is the real question for the new Generation why not put Qui Gon Jin into the scene since Yoda refers to him teaching Obi Wan how to do the blue shimmery ghost thing in the first place (at the end of SW3) and it would be a logical chronological order of the Jedi Masters that influenced Luke.
Posted by Tyson  in  Eugene OR.  on  Wed Feb 28, 2007  at  12:33 AM
It's simple. Yoda and Obi-Wan appear as they looked when they died. If you want to get technical, Anakin died when he turned to the dark side, and became Vader. Thats why he should appear as he was before the turned. Some argue that he turned back at the end of Ep6 when he killed the Emperor and saved Luke, thus he should have stayed as the old man. I don't agree. As its stated many times in the series, once you turn to the dark side, you can't come back. The moment Vader killed the Emperor, he was no longer acting as Darth Vader, he was no longer under the control of the Emperor. The "good" on him won out over the "evil". At that moment, the "old man" that was Vader died! He was now acting as Anakin, before he turned to the dark side. So he died as THAT Anakin, and should appear THAT way. I think George Lucas did a great job on the edits. It binds the series together. Everyone seems to forget. There is not supposed to be an old and new Star Wars. All six moves are telling ONE story. Now that the technology existed for Lucas to realize the vision he had of his creation, he did well by going back and updating everything he did so he could tell his story they way he always intended it to be told. We cant think of Ep4-6 and Ep1-3 a2 different sets or stories. They are not, they are one set, one story, that is at last, complete.

Posted by Strider  in  USA  on  Sat Jun 02, 2007  at  07:08 AM
all i can say is that I am thankful that I have the original Special Edition VCD box set for prosterity and not this new "re-engineered rubbish"
Posted by David  on  Wed Jun 06, 2007  at  01:40 PM
It really doesen't matter. Hayden only exists in a newer release, and will never be considered the original. Man , i liked shaw, he looks more kind hearted in Jedi. But man it's just like taking the cigarette out of the Beatles Abbey Road cover, trying to just erase history! there are way more copies of original and Special edition jedi out there that this will just be a little blip.
Posted by Marc  in  Canada  on  Mon Jun 18, 2007  at  11:44 AM
Nobody seems to point this out, so I'll do it for you guys. At the end of the real return of the Jedi, the first scene showing Anakin was Hayden Christensen , however. After Leia enters, the second scene WASN'T Hayden Christensen , he looked ten of fifteen years older, and I'm ashamed at alot of star wars fans for not noticing it, and for the ones who have. wink Oh and, Sebastian Shaw can go to hell. Picture that fatass weilding a Lightsaber. Sebby doesn't make a good Anakin AT ALL.
Posted by Asukte Arofo  on  Thu Jul 05, 2007  at  03:26 AM
Also, remember. This is for the new generation Star Wars fans, if you wanna see Sebastian Shaw, buy the original video box set. That is all, Arofo OUT!
Posted by Asukte Arfo  on  Thu Jul 05, 2007  at  03:29 AM
I'm surprised nobody has brought this up (or maybe I just misunderstood this aspect of the movies), but it seems that there was a thread throughout the first 3 episodes, that becoming a ghost is not something that just happens automatically when a jedi dies.

Qui Gon was the first to master this technique, and used the ghost form to teach Yoda and Obi Wan the technique while they were in exile.

Who taught Anakin how to become a ghost? Did Vader and the Emperor discover the immortality technique that they were looking for? If so, it doesn't make sense that he should appear as he was before the dark side corrupted him, since he learned the technique later, from the dark side.

I think what would make the most sense, though, is if Anakin did not appear in the ending. As far as I can tell, nobody ever taught him the technique. Furthermore, you see Luke burn Vader's corpse at the end of the movie. I seem to recall that all of the other jedis that became ghosts actually disappeared when they died, but not Anakin.

As for whether he would appear old or young, it really depends on how ghosts work in the Star Wars universe. Do ghosts have all of the same machine parts, clothing, wounds, and aging that they had when they were alive? Can spirits take on a form of their choosing? If so, what form would Anakin choose for such an occasion?
Posted by Who Knows  on  Sun Jul 29, 2007  at  08:22 PM
It's not about the older star wars fans. It's about the newer star wars fans. You people have to get over yourselves.. if you want to see Shaw playing Anakin.. then buy the box VHS set. Otherwise.. suck a ####.
Posted by Asukte  on  Tue Aug 28, 2007  at  02:59 AM
it coz when he was young he was burned and only alive threw machines so his souls ghost thing of he last natural form
Posted by dan  in  england  on  Wed Dec 05, 2007  at  06:06 AM
I just watched the "new and improved" Return of the Jedi and I didn't mind the new celebration scenes and such, but I hated just hated that they put Hayden Christianson as a spirit.

It doesn't even make sense. Obi Wan didn't all of a sudden become young again in his ghost, so why did Anikin? They should have kept the original scene. That was so stupid.
Posted by Kathy  on  Sun Apr 13, 2008  at  09:15 PM
I don't really find the change to be that big of a deal. Honestly if the Jedi can make their spirits into blue see though "ghosts" then why couldn't they make themselves look like their image of themselves? If you want to argue that Obi Wan and Yoda would then make themselves look younger then you are quite honestly just thinking about it way too much. It's Star Wars for pete's sake you can put too much thought into trying to find every little flaw in a sci-fi movie.
Posted by Washington Irving  on  Sun Apr 13, 2008  at  09:29 PM
I just saw the ending of "Return of the Jedi" and saw the new young Anakin in the last scene instead of the old guy. I was sooooooooooo upset. I was so upset I basically renounced Star Wars as my favorite movie, except it was much more then a movie to me. Much much more.

Darth Vadar basically changed the outcome, he is responsible for ending the evil by throwing the emperor over and destroying him. He took the pain of the energy from the emperor for Luke. This LAST extremely powerful act of good to me changed him back to good, and thus a Jedi. This means his image of his older self like the origional older scene was right.

Also it's good to have a fitting father image look at you, a kind and gentle face finally happy to be out of a suit and at peace with his friends. The last image luke saw was an older man when he lifted the mask off, i'm sure luke would want to feel comforted by that man he rescued not a 20 year old kid who looks like he should be in a boy band.

To me, you don't change a movie especially if there is not thought put into the change. Movies are supposed to be made, and then ended. Not made and changed constantly, as those changed make it a new movie, and the old movie you liked no longer exists. The new generations will see the new movies and never understand how good the origionals were. I guess in the future we will see all our old movies remade or edited to suit the need for companies making money.
Posted by John  on  Sun Apr 13, 2008  at  10:26 PM
I watched it on Spike TV last weekend and the ending was changed, I didn't think that was needed, because the new Star Wars episodes showed us who Darth Vader was. They shouldn't have changed the ending. It didn't make sense.
Posted by Cherice  on  Thu Apr 17, 2008  at  01:04 PM
If they want to add "originally deleted" scenes or create additional new ones that mesh with the story line, so be it. BUT NEVER, EVER change an original scene. Period. When I saw the end of Jedi, my heart sank to the bottom of my stomach.
Posted by wingsfan  on  Thu Apr 17, 2008  at  09:42 PM
The new ending for Return Of The Jedi sucks for these reasons-

1. A young, boyish-looking Anakin (Christenson) replaces the more appropriate, older looking one (Shaw) in the Jedi ghost shot
2. Shots of other cities like Theed and Coruscant are added. These shots are totally out of context and take the focus away from the rebel team on Endor
3. Most egregious change: the Ewok victory song is removed!

I was stunned when I realized the Ewok song was edited out. It was a great song. It was upbeat and it had an exciting crescendo that segued perfectly into the Star Wars fanfare that singles the end of the movie and the beginning of the credits. The new melody is nowhere near as exciting.

Posted by Apex  in  la  on  Sat Apr 26, 2008  at  12:45 AM
oops i meant signals not singles. heh.
Posted by Apex  in  la  on  Sat Apr 26, 2008  at  12:47 AM
I think it it is wonderful that they chose to bring Anakin back as he was before he became Darth Veda. I just wish the would have chosen to add Padme as well into the mix. She is afterall the sole reason why Anakin became Darth Veda and I think it would have brought a happy ending to their love that was taken away from them and give all of 'fans" a happy ever after.
Posted by S  in  Nashville  on  Thu May 01, 2008  at  03:27 PM
George Lucas = $ellout.

Not a good director.

Posted by eric g  on  Mon Jul 07, 2008  at  11:02 PM
but...but...they replaced the classic image with the "new" anakin...sorry but sebastian shaw will always be my image of the "good" darth vader
Posted by Jared  on  Sat Aug 30, 2008  at  09:32 AM
This was so stupid. Anakin turned back to the light side at the end, for cripes' sake! If this is supposed to be the "good Anakin" that "died" when he became Darth Vader, then where the heck was he earlier? No matter how you cut it, Anakin and Darth Vader are the same person at different points in the same lifetime. They do not have two seperate souls, because that makes no sense. George Lucas was just feeling like an idiot so he decided he needed to inject Hayden Christensen into the original trilogy to try and sew things together with the prequels better. And he failed.
Posted by Timstuff  in  Virginia USA  on  Tue Sep 02, 2008  at  08:41 PM
I can't beleive I'm writing this. My brother is a Star Wars fanatic (normal/but he gets emotional)--he has the 1983 VHS original store bought tape of Return of the Jedi and has shown me it and it has Hayden Christianson in the ending. I did not believe my brother until he sat me down and showed me the VHS he bought over twenty years ago, and, he has the recent DVD set and they both have the same ending. My question, was Hayden born back then, was he three years old? How is this possible. My brother is freaking me out and I'm not even into Star Wars, but now I need someone to see the ORIGINAL VHS tape and Hayden is in it--someone please explain to me how this is done or how was it done??? Help! Hasn't anyone else noticed this? So what's going ON?!
Posted by Morgan-Eve  on  Wed Sep 17, 2008  at  09:51 AM
It sounds like someone has done an elaborate prank of some sort. It's possible that someone took the full-frame edition of the DVD and ripped the shot of Christensen onto the VHS tape as a less-than-funny practical joke. It's a shame that they had to deface an original ROTJ VHS just for a cheap laugh!
Posted by Timsuff  in  Virginia USA  on  Wed Sep 17, 2008  at  09:59 AM
I think some of the changes were good in this release and some were bad. I love how the everything fits so well even though the trilogies were made so many years apart.

The only 2 real problems/questions that there were for me were these, but I have also solved/answered them and am satisfied:

1. Obiwan kept saying that Yoda trianed him. I agree with the person above that he was trained as a youngling by Yoda. I also think that even though Obiwan was pretty much ready to become a Jedi Master after Qui-Gon was killed he still needed some further training and got it from Yoda since Qui-Gon prematurley died. He was edgy when he was younger and probably especially edgy and rambunctious since he saw his master die, and had some problems controlling his feelings and whatnot for a while. Also at the end of Episode III didn't Yoda say he needed to train Obiwan to speak be able to speak to the dead and his old master Qui-Gon while he gaurded the boy (luke). I know that Obiwan in Episode V sounded like he was talking about his early training but still.

2. Leia talking about how she remembered her mother. The way she talks seems to me like she's describing the force. Not that she actually remembers her mother, but that she remembers her through the force, can feel her through the force.

I hope these "answers" satisfy some people.
Posted by *WARS  on  Sun Oct 26, 2008  at  06:22 PM
Posted by Doesn't Matter  on  Sun Nov 09, 2008  at  10:55 AM
If ghosting is a technique, why would Darth Vader confuse his son and appear in his younger form? Luke doesn't know him as anything but aged-- that's the man that saved him, that's the man he had touching words with before he died, that's all he knows. Being younger, wouldn't Luke be like 'huh?' he doesn't have the same knowledge we the audience have.

To me, another poor afterthought on Lucas' part. It's obvious to me he keeps changing his mind as he goes along. He made Darth aged for a reason, had he thought out the fact that Darth would be 40, then he would have gotten a younger actor. Obviously he hadn't thought that through yet. Remember, he also cast Shaw for a reason, and that's because originally he was going for the fact that being scarred and evil made you look... not great. Old and decrepit like. It's been hinted as much in the other official publications.

As for the reasons that Anakin's soul is frozen in time, and he appears as he was at that time, I think is invalid. He physically looked old, and he actually doesn't go back to his old self but turns good -again- while old --, and looking the way he does. Lets not forget that 'young' (Hayden Christensen) Anakin is never *truly* good nor evil for a long time. His transition to the dark side started *before* he gets rolled over in lava and all of that and put in the suit. When he killed 'younglings' was he more good or more evil? He was not Darth Vader yet, either. Therefore, when was his soul frozen to the time where he was 'good'? It makes no sense. Lucas changed it but never seriously thought it through. He turns good, at the end, redeemed by his son, and it makes sense that the man he looks like then (even if unnaturally aged), should carry on to the vision Luke sees. Simply because Lucas is a) insane and b) wishy washy with his own creations doesn't mean we should take his word as law. 'Because he intended it like that' is not true, he had the means to cast a younger actor, but didn't. So he just changed his mind. Had Da Vinci changed his mind and painted a pink beret on the Mona Lisa's head suddenly, would everyone say 'well he made her so it's not ruined, he wanted it that way?' psh.

Anyway, I think anyone who liked Episode III probably likes the changes, and anyone who doesn't, probably doesn't. I'm of the latter persuasion, so I hate them. Especially the Ewok song. And I'm only in my 20s, so I'm not an old fuddy duddy. In my opinion, 'The Greatest Page In the Universe' has the best review on Episode 3 up, ever.
Posted by Dee  on  Sat May 16, 2009  at  11:36 AM
When I saw this new ending I was a little disheartened, because I could swear I saw Obi-wan holding a Session Lager in the original. Fortunately, I always keep VHS copies of all my favorite movies fastforwarded to the ending and sure enough, if you look in the left hand corner of the screen just as the Ewok is drumming the stormtrooper helmets, you'll actually see a crinkly old man hand using a light sabre to open a beer.

Also, they removed the Ewok song "Chub-chub chubbity chub" which is just a travesty. The Ewok happen to be a very rich and culturally diverse culture.

But seriously, that ending was fucking awkward. I mean they totally removed the part where Han and Lando were bouncing up and down and hugging. Great movies just have to have gay and boisterous hugging, take for example LOTR. So what the hell?

Lastly I would like to say, that replacing the old Anakin with the young Anakin makes as much sense as spanking a tiger with a crucible, you just don't do it!
Posted by Johnny Tremens  on  Sat Jul 04, 2009  at  11:10 PM
I think about the way other great movies have ended, and think changing the Anakins was like changing Rick or Louis at the end of 'Casablanca.' You would cheapen the whole thing. With 'Return of the Jedi,' they did just that.
Posted by John Vincent  in  Philadelphia  on  Sun Jul 05, 2009  at  05:31 PM
"I Was pleasantly suprised to see the new ending
to Return of the Jedi. Hayden looks great
in that roll, and Whatever George wants with
his screenplay is Etched in stone. I look foreward to more characters and movies from the
great one, "George Lucas,"
Posted by Jason Jack  in  Portland, Oregon  on  Thu Aug 13, 2009  at  01:14 AM
He did this because he has way too much time on his hands trying to recycle his old stuff to make more $$$ and is addicted to making unnecessary changes to compensate for his huge reduction in creative ability compared to when he was younger. For a more detailed analysis of this, see south park, season 12 episode 8, "The China Probrem".
Posted by Kirkr  on  Wed Sep 09, 2009  at  11:54 AM
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