At first glance, it seems difficult to imagine Star Wars
presented as a radio serial. Wouldn't the story be weakened by the loss of visuals? This remarkable production, broadcast on National Public Radio in 1981, proves that sounds convey pictures quite well on their own. John Williams's original score and sound effects from the film add drama and depth to the story, and the characters are brought to life by a talented cast including Mark Hamill and Anthony Daniels reprising their roles as Luke Skywalker and C-3PO. Though Brock Peters's Darth Vader is a bit of a disappointment (James Earl Jones left some pretty big boots to fill), Perry King does a fine turn as Han Solo, and Ann Sachs makes a believable Princess Leia. The story itself has been greatly expanded, and listeners are treated to several new scenes, including conversations between Princess Leia and her father on Alderaan and Biggs Darklighter's confession to Luke that he had decided to join the Rebel Alliance after leaving the Imperial Space Academy. Presented in 13 episodes, this excellent radio drama is enjoyable even for those whom audiobooks usually leave cold. As series director John Madden noted during the production, "You may think you've seen the movie; wait till you hear it." (Running time: 6 hours, 6 cassettes) --C.B. Delaney
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
HighBridge Co. has issued the complete National Public Radio production of Star Wars: The Radio Drama
. It consists of 13 half-hour episodes. There is a full cast, including movie performers Mark Hamill (Luke) and Anthony Daniels (C3PO). There also is music and sound effects. It clearly demonstrates that good radio drama is not dead. The series covers the same ground as the original movie; but because of the added length, there are details the movie could hope to include. In fact, it explains some things (such as individual character's motivations) that were best hinted at...in the movie. -- Indianapolis Star, June 9, 1993