On Tuesday, May 3, 2005, Sony Classical will release the original motion picture soundtrack of the last episode of the massively popular "Star Wars" saga, Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith. It features a new score by five-time Oscar winner John Williams, who is also the composer and conductor of the score for each film in the six-chapter "Star Wars" saga, and an exclusive collector's DVD "Star Wars: A Musical Journey" an unprecedented bonus at no additional cost.
Created especially to accompany the CD release, the thrilling 70-minute DVD features 16 brand-new music videos set to selections from all six of John Williams' unforgettable "Star Wars" film scores and has been designed around a timeline that will take the viewer chronologically through the entire saga. Each movement is introduced by actor Ian McDiarmid (who plays Senator Palpatine in the films) and features a spectacular montage of images, complete with excerpts of the original dialogue and sound effects, set to Williams' legendary music which has been newly remixed and remastered in 5.1 surround sound. Williams' principal theme from the new score, entitled "Battle of the Heroes," will be featured in a music video created by Lucasfilm.
The soundtrack packaging will also include liner notes from George Lucas plus an exclusive fold-out poster featuring a montage of images from the film.
In "Revenge of the Sith," the final and most dramatic chapter of the "Star Wars" saga, the Clone Wars rage as the rift widens between Chancellor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) and the Jedi Council. Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen), the young Jedi Knight with an allegiance to Chancellor Palpatine, struggles to keep his marriage to Padme' Amidala (Natalie Portman) a secret amid the turmoil. Seduced by promises of power and temptations of the dark side, he pledges himself to the evil Darth Sidious and becomes Darth Vader. Together, Sidious and Vader set in motion a plot of revenge against the Jedi, leading to a climatic lightsaber battle between Vader and his former master, Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor), that will decide the fate of the galaxy.
With 43 Oscar nominations to his credit, Williams has composed a new score for the film, utilizing the themes and musical motives that link it with his earlier scores for the "Star Wars" films. The London Symphony Orchestra (L.S.O), with the composer conducting, performs the original score. The L.S.O. is the same orchestra that recorded Williams' original Star Wars score 28 years ago and has continued to perform the score for each successive chapter of the saga.
In 1999, Sony Classical released the Grammy-nominated original soundtrack recording of Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace, which was a platinum-selling album in the U.S. and sold more than two million copies worldwide, in addition to a specially packaged Ultimate Edition that featured Williams' entire score for that film. In 2002, the label released the original soundtrack recording of Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones. Both are currently available.
In September 2004, Sony Classical became the home of all the "Star Wars" soundtracks with the release of newly remastered editions of the soundtrack recordings of Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope, Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back and Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi. The recordings are available individually and in a special boxed set with a deluxe slipcover case.
Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith soundtrack also continues Sony Classical's long association with John Williams, who has recorded a number of non-film projects for the label. Williams won the third of his five Academy Awards for his score for the original "Star Wars" (1977) and received nominations for his scores for "The Empire Strikes Back" (1980) and "Return of the Jedi" (1983). The soundtrack albums for "Star Wars" and "The Empire Strikes Back" also won Grammy® Awards for Williams in 1977 and 1980, and he was a nominee for "Return of the Jedi" in 1983 and "The Phantom Menace" in 2000.
Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith, written and directed by George Lucas, opens worldwide on Thursday, May 19, 2005.