Originally Posted by EddieLarkin
Correct me if I'm wrong, but what difference does it make to Disney if Fox has distribution rights to the other films? Disney control the properties, in the same way Lucasfilm did. If Disney want the original trilogy putting out (baring some contractual prevention), what's to stop them? Sure, Fox have to be the ones to actually produce the discs and thus get a cut of the profits, but can they say no to Disney? I certainly don't think they could say no to Lucasfilm. If Fox truly had "control" over anything regarding the films, Lucas wouldn't have been able to stop them putting out the unaltered trilogy.
Disney has nothing to do with releasing the first 6 movies on DVD/BD. They don't own the rights to do that. Fox does until 2020 when the rights resort to Disney for 5 of the 6 films (not #4). If Fox releases the 1-6 SWs movies say on 4K BD 3 years from now, Disney doesn't get a single dime of the revenue, nor do they have any say as to how or what will be released. Just like when Fox starts releasing 1-6 on 3D BD. Same situation.
If Fox signed a deal with Lucasfilm to only release #4 as the edited version and that deal is a deal that lasts "forever" then Lucas has legally prevented Fox or anyone else from ever releasing #4 as it was originally seen back in 1977. And the only person who can change that is George Lucas himself.
Episodes 5 & 6 are different because Lucas owned them outright and has transferred his ownership to Disney . . with the Fox deal in place until 2020.
Also Fox owns the rights to the theaterical presentations of 1-6 until 2020 (again except #4)
What Disney now owns is the other rights for 1-6 . . . like TV licensing rights (no exceptions). So Disney could show the original 4,5 & 6 movies on their Disney HD channel (or license them to other TV channels) unless they too signed some kind of deal with Lucas preventing them from doing such.
Remember . . . Lucasfilm was 100% owned by George Lucas. He was the only stockholder.
If George Lucas was determined to consider the edited versions of 4, 5 & 6 as the ONLY versions then he could have easily accomplished that legally. And there is nothing anyone can do to change that . . . again except George Lucas himself.Edited by Lee Stewart - 11/1/12 at 9:14pm