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Digital release doubtful for CLONES

Lucas' dream of techno-release may rise with EPISODE III

By Christopher Allan Smith     February 14, 2002
Source: Variety


Natalie Portman as Padmé Amidala and Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker are joined by R2-D2 and C-3PO on the desert planet Tatooine in STAR WARS: EPISODE II - ATTACK OF THE CLONES
© 2001 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM

It looks like George Lucas' dream of releasing STAR WARS EPISODE II: ATTACK OF THE CLONES exclusively in digitally projected theaters has been pushed off until the release of EPISODE II, at least.



According to an extensive story in today's VARIETY, there are only 20 digital screens in North America, and while many more are expected to come online by CLONES' May 16 release, there may be only 120 total by that date.



"We've proselytized about this for years," Lucasfilm president Gordon Radley said. "So, it's disappointing to think that it continues to take digital cinema longer to come to fruition than it should."



The film is expected to be released in over 3000 screens. Among the reasons for the slow adoption of digital projection technology: no unifying standard for projectors or digital distribution systems, and very few films formatted by studios to be projected digitally.

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