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Watch the Lost Short Film George Lucas Wanted to Play Before “Empire Strikes Back”

Black Angel
Black Angel
In case you hadn’t already guessed, this is not our story’s hero.

When George Lucas went to make The Empire Strikes Back, he decided he wanted a short film to screen before the main feature to set the tone. He dispatched Roger Christian, who’d served as a set decorator on Star Wars, to direct a script that Christian had written. The resulting short film was “Black Angel,” about a knight who gets back from the Crusades to find that things are not at all as he left them. There is a quest, there is a mysterious lady, there is a Black Knight. This 25-minute movie is said to have influenced Excalibur, Lionheart, Ladyhawke, and even Empire Strikes Back itself.

Some audiences in the UK saw “Black Angel,” but the film has been considered lost for over 30 years. Then, recently, a print turned up, and it’s now available on YouTube—you can see it in its entirety below, following some introductory comments from Roger Christian. It also has a website: blackangelmovie.com.

8 thoughts on “Watch the Lost Short Film George Lucas Wanted to Play Before “Empire Strikes Back”

  1. Absolutely lame as anything I have seen in my life. No point in watching this because it absolutely sucks. Delete this page and go away as soon as you can. Lame, Lame, Lame. (the scenery was kinda nice though) But the plot and the act was LAME. Thank you so very much for Wasting my time.

  2. Considering the ridiculously small budget the production values are quite good. Costuming was excellent with awesome texture and weight. In a big budget picture those kinds of props and dressing usually cost quite a bit. In this short, about 1/3 the length of a full length movie, the director managed to keep the atmosphere authentic throughout the story in spite of the small budget. The sequence where the knight follows the beggar felt a bit long but I think the director was trying to convey the distance the knight's quest was taking him. Film shorts are a fun form of film art and crafting a good essay in a short amount of time requires deft direction and editing. The film could have used a bit of polishing here and there, but the overall product is quite good.

  3. For a short subject Film….I enjoyed it. The story was basic simple and easy…But I have seen a lot worse and they had more money better everything. For what the Director had to work with, the money, No resources….etc. I plan to keep it and tell others. Just proves a person dose not need much….a story and some willing people.

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