Long Ago, In A Galaxy Not So Far Away...
...George Lucas began producing revised versions of the original Star Wars trilogy. While he was certainly entitled to do that, and invested his creative energies, time and money into the effort, the changes he wrought definitely did not please everyone - from "Greedo shot first", random CGI beasties plastered everywhere, and other nips and tucks to the beloved movies.
Almost perversely, Mr Lucas seems to have made a concerted effort to try to make sure that the movie I saw back in 1977 is effectively no longer available, and that the newer CGI enhanced versions should be considered the correct, accepted version.
A group of equally stubborn fans disagree, and have somehow managed to dig up and painstakingly restore an original version of the movie, warts and all. It's legality is questionable, but it's an interesting turn of events and a testament to the fans. The whole thing is laid out here, and it's remarkable how many slightly different versions Mr Lucas actually ended up with.
Unlike the fan-made "Star Wars Despecialized" edition which is made using multiple sources including the laserdisc, Blu-ray, 16mm print transfer and various audio dubs, this "Silver Screen Theatrical Version" from Team One Negative is from the 35mm theatrical print of "Star Wars."
"Why did it take over three years to complete?" YouTube user The Star Wars Trilogy wrote in its video description. "This is why. Manual cleanup alone took an average of one minute per frame. Star Wars has around 174,000 frames."