The Star Wars soundtrack saw subsequent reissues since its initial release. In 2016, the album was re-released by Sony Classical Records on vinyl, CD, and digital formats alongside Williams' other Star Wars soundtracks. The vinyl release is pressed on 180g vinyl, and features the original 20th Century Records logo. Unlike all of Sony Classical's previous releases, however, the vinyl version is a remastered version of the original 1977 release, not the Special Edition. Walt Disney Records remastered and reissued the soundtrack on vinyl LP on December 1, 2017, and on CD and digital formats on May 4, 2018.
Original 1977 release
The original 1977 release of the soundtrack, entitled Star Wars - Original Soundtrack, included a poster of a painting by science fiction artist John Berkey, depicting the final battle over the Death Star from the film's end. The album was released as a double LP which was formatted for an autochanger record player; one disc had sides one and four with the other having sides two and three. This allowed a person to stack sides one and two on the player, then flip the stack over for sides three and four, allowing the listener to have over half an hour of uninterrupted music before they needed to flip the discs over.
First release on LP by 20th Century Records. For the original soundtrack, Williams selected 75 minutes of music out of the 88 minute score. To provide musical variety, it did not follow the film's chronological order.
1st Violins: Neville Taweel (Leader), Richard Studt (Principal), Irvine Arditti (Principal), Brian Thomas (Sub-Principal), Stanley Castle, Sydney Colter, Dennis Gaines, Charles Beldom, Robert Retallick, C. Reuben, Norman Freeman, Max Weber, Robin Brightman, Brian Gaulton
2nd Violins: Warwick Hill (Principal), Neil Watson (Co-Principal), Samuel Artis, William Brown, Thomas Cook, Terry Morton, Jack Steadman, Donald Stewart, Thomas Swift, David Williams, R. Clark, Geoffrey Creese, D. Llewellyn, Harry Nathan
Violas: Alexander Taylor (Principal), Brian Clarke (Co-Principal), Peter Norriss (Sub-Principal), Patrick Hooley, Michael Mitchell, David Hume, William Sumpton, Patrick Vermont, William Krasnik, Eric Cuthbertson
Cellos: Douglas Cummings (Principal), Maurice Meulien (Co-Principal), Ray Adams (Sub-Principal), Jack Long, Ken Law, Douglas Powrie, Francis Saunders, Clive Gillinson, Tom Storer, K. Glossop
Double Basses: Bruce Mollinson (Principal), Arthur Griffiths (Sub-Principal), John Cooper, Gerald Newson, Pashanko Dimitroff, Goelson Neal
Flutes: Richard Taylor (Principal), Lowry Sanders, Francis Nolan
Oboes: Roger Lord (Principal), Anthony Camden (Principal)
Clarinets: Jack Brymer (Principal), Ronald Moore, Roy Jowitt
Bassoons: Robert Bourton (Principal), Peter Francis
Horns: David Cripps (Principal), John Rooke (Asst. Principal), Anthony Chidell, Graham Warren, James Quaife, James Brown, S. Reading, J. Butterworth, Terry Johns
Trumpets: Maurice Murphy (Principal), William Lang, Norman Archibald, R. Izen
Trombones: Dennis Wick (Principal), Eric Crees (Principal), Frank Mathison
Tuba: J. Fletcher (Principal), Steven Wick
Timpani: Kurt-Hans Goedicke (Principal)
Percussion: Michael Frye (Principal), Ray Northcott
In 1993, 20th Century Fox Film Scores released a four-CD box set containing music from the original Star Wars trilogy. This release marked the first time that the complete contents of the original double-LP releases of the scores from the first two films became available on CD. Disc one in the set was devoted to Star Wars, with further tracks on disc four.
Since every cue is recorded several times, usually with varying orchestral differences, the final decisions on what takes of cues are used and/or how they are edited to create the tracks was decided by the music editor Kenneth Wannberg. In the time between the original LP release and the Anthology's release, this breakdown was lost. Because of this, many takes of cues used on the Anthology are not the same. This is most obvious on the cue "The Throne Room". Also, the tracks were re-arranged to better follow their chronological order in the film.
"The Battle of Yavin (Launch from the Fourth Moon/X-Wings Draw Fire/Use the Force)"
"The Throne Room/End Title"
2017 and 2018 Disney reissues
Walt Disney Records reissued the original 1977 soundtrack album in digital formats and streaming services on January 1, 2017, and on LP record on December 1, 2017, to coincide with the film's fortieth anniversary that same year. The LP reissue featured a remastered soundtrack, hand-etched hologram art, and a 48-page book containing production photographs, liner notes, and essays on John Williams and the music of Star Wars.
Disney released a newly remastered edition of the original 1977 album program on CD, digital download, and streaming services on May 4, 2018. This remaster was newly assembled by Shawn Murphy and Skywalker Sound from the highest-quality master tapes available, rather than sourced from the existing 1977 album masters. On these reissues, the final track ("The Throne Room and End Title") is presented at the correct speed and pitch, having been sped up slightly on the original LP, CD, and 2016 Sony releases.
Compilations and rerecordings (Selection)
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Tracks of the soundtrack appear on various Best of Compilations and rerecordings by John Williams.
1983: The Star Wars Trilogy (Return of the Jedi / The Empire Strikes Back / Star Wars)
1990/2001: John Williams Conducts The Star Wars Trilogy
The score for Star Wars was recorded over the span of eight days in the month of March 1977. The 1997 Special Edition soundtrack release by RCA Victor included a detailed look at the recording log for all the cues in the film.