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Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

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After the Rebels are brutally overpowered by the Empire on the ice planet Hoth, Luke Skywalker begins Jedi training with Yoda, while his friends are pursued by Darth Vader and a bounty hunter named Boba Fett all over the galaxy.

Director:

Irvin Kershner

Writers:

Leigh Brackett (screenplay by), Lawrence Kasdan (screenplay by) | 1 more credit »
Popularity
207 ( 56)

Here's Your Cheat Sheet for the 'Star Wars' Saga

With the release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, this is the perfect opportunity to recap the epic space opera audiences have enjoyed for over 40 years.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mark Hamill ... Luke Skywalker
Harrison Ford ... Han Solo
Carrie Fisher ... Princess Leia
Billy Dee Williams ... Lando Calrissian
Anthony Daniels ... C-3PO
David Prowse ... Darth Vader
Peter Mayhew ... Chewbacca
Kenny Baker ... R2-D2
Frank Oz ... Yoda (voice)
Alec Guinness ... Ben (Obi-Wan) Kenobi
Jeremy Bulloch ... Boba Fett
John Hollis ... Lando's Aide
Jack Purvis ... Chief Ugnaught
Des Webb Des Webb ... Snow Creature
Clive Revill ... Emperor (voice)
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Storyline

Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Princess Leia and Chewbacca face attack by the Imperial forces and its AT-AT walkers on the ice planet Hoth. While Han and Leia escape in the Millennium Falcon, Luke travels to Dagobah in search of Yoda. Only with the Jedi Master's help will Luke survive when the Dark Side of the Force beckons him into the ultimate duel with Darth Vader. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The battle continues... See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for sci-fi action violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 June 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back See more »

Filming Locations:

Banks, Oregon, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,910,483, 25 May 1980

Gross USA:

$290,271,960

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$547,879,454
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Lucasfilm See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (special edition)

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby Stereo (35 mm prints)| Dolby Digital EX (DVD)| DTS-ES (6.1 channels) (blu-ray)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Included among the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider. See more »

Goofs

Obi-Wan's ghost tells Luke on Hoth that Yoda is the Jedi master who trained him, when in fact, his master was Qui-Gon Jinn. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Luke: Echo Three to Echo Seven. Han, old buddy, do you read me?
Han Solo: Loud and clear, kid. What's up?
Luke: Well, I finished my circle. I don't pick up any life readings.
Han Solo: There isn't enough life on this ice cube to fill a space cruiser. Sensors are placed. I'm going back.
Luke: Right. I'll see you shortly. There's a meteorite that hit the ground near here. I want to check it out. It won't take long.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening crawl: "It is a dark time for the Rebellion. Although the Death Star has been destroyed, Imperial troops have driven the Rebel forces from their hidden base and pursued them across the galaxy. Evading the dreaded Imperial Starfleet, a group of freedom fighters led by Luke Skywalker has established a new secret base on the remote ice world of Hoth. The evil lord Darth Vader, obsessed with finding young Skywalker, has dispatched thousands of remote probes into the far reaches of space..." See more »

Alternate Versions

The film was dubbed into Hungarian three times:
  • The original 1982 dub was the country's first dub created for any Star Wars media (unless one counts a Star Wars crossover episode of The Muppet Show, which was dubbed prior to this), and defined many terms and name pronunciations that later became staples of Hungarian translations. The dialogue was also simplified to a degree, references to various planets namedropped by Han were removed. Certain jokes were rewritten: Leia calls Han "hairy-soled" (an old derogatory slur for poor Romanian people) and "Earthstruck" (as opposed to moonstruck), to which Han replies "How did you know my foot sole is hairy?" Mild profanity was also added: Lando calls Han a "lowly bastard pimp". Since Yoda's characteristic manner of speech is already close to the Hungarian word order, he talks normally. Another unique dubbing choice was giving Darth Vader an emotionless, almost monotone and robotic voice. Both C-3PO and Yoda were given very high-pitched voices, and Luke talked with a heavy rural "farm boy" accent. The dub also contained a few flubs, like Luke mispronouncing the word droid as "dorid", Boba Fett's first line being absent and Vader and the Emperor briefly talking over each other during their conversation.
  • The second dub was made for the 1995 VHS release, with mostly consistent voices across all three films of the trilogy. According to the dubbing supervisor, Luke's new voice actor András Stohl gave such a good performance that he was asked to deliberately "act bad" to match Mark Hamill's on-screen acting.
  • The third dub, created for 1997's Special Edition kept most of the "standardized" voice cast, but recast Vader. This dub is notorious for omitting Vader's breathing noise throughout the entire film due to an audio mixing flub. Post-production was done in a high tech London studio under strict scrutiny by Lucasfilm, yet no one caught the error. This was not fixed for later releases either, not even for the 2011 Blu-ray. Yoda was given an exaggerated, comical laugh in the scene where he "plays dumb".
  • The redone Emperor scene created for the 2011 Blu-ray release featured Vader's 1995 voice, as his 1997 voice actor had passed away in 2005. This results in Vader talking in two different voices during the course of the movie. This is the only scene that restored Vader's breathing sound.
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Connections

Referenced in Chasing Amy (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Original 'Star Wars' Themes and Compositions
(uncredited)
Composed, Arranged and Conducted by John Williams
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
It's NOT the darkest of the trilogy - it's the most mature
26 October 1999 | by SpleenSee all my reviews

`It avoids having the standard shoot-'em-up ending,' says a friend of mine, `by not having an ending.' I suppose this is what most people think, but all the same the film manages to form a satisfying whole; or at least, a whole that satisfies me. I'm therefore inclined to think it DOES have an ending. Obviously, I can't discuss this without giving things away to those few who don't know what happens. If you're one of those few, then believe me: your ignorance is precious enough to be worth guarding until you see the film. Stop reading now.

After the surprise attack on the rebel base, Luke Skywalker splits with Han, Leia, et al. Han's party gets away first (is it just me, or is the shot of Luke watching the Falcon flying off while he stands stranded on the ground, a poignant one?), but thereafter they face one narrow escape after another, while Luke slinks off quietly and safely to train with Yoda.

The training scenes are many and Yoda talks a great deal of rubbish. But somehow it doesn't matter. The film is ambivalent in its attitude towards Yoda, anyway. Our sympathy clearly lies with the entirely non-spiritual concerns of Han, Leia and the adolescent Luke. The main story concerns the understanding that builds between Han and Leia. In the end they are honest with one another; and if Han's being frozen and shipped back to Tatooine is the price to pay for this, well, it's the price to pay. It was very important NOT to end with the dashing rescue that opens `Return of the Jedi', which would be dramatically beside the point. Instead we end with the promise that the rescue will some day occur. That's enough.

As for Luke: he abandons Yoda to rescue Han and Leia, and achieves NOTHING WHATEVER. This was my favourite touch. All five Jedis - Luke, Obi-Wan, Yoda, Vader, and the Emperor - find that their conflicting instincts are all entirely wrong. The film is really about the temporary triumph of human impulses over the mystical Force. Luke's human idealism is vindicated, but his supernatural powers, just this once, are not.

When George Lucas gave his Star Wars trilogy a fresh coat of varnish in 1997 he felt he had to justify the expense by making needless changes. You'll notice he made precious few changes to episode V. There just wasn't room. He added a few extra shots of the ice monster, which of course weakened that one scene; but even with those changes in place the Special Edition is virtually identical to the original edition. Since Lucas was so keen on making changes wherever he could this is obviously a tribute to the tightness of the story and the direction. It's also a tribute to the perfection of the original special effects, more innovative than the effects in the first Star Wars movie and better than the effects in any subsequent one.


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