Return of the Jedi (soundtrack)

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Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
Cover from the original 1983 release.
Film score by John Williams
Released 1983
Recorded January–February, 1983
Studio Abbey Road Studios, London, Olympic Studios, West London, Fox Scoring Stage, Hollywood
Genre Classical
Length 44:59
Label RSO Records
Producer John Williams
John Williams chronology
E.T. the Extra Terrestrial
Return of the Jedi
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
Star Wars soundtracks chronology
The Empire Strikes Back
Return of the Jedi
Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[1]
Filmtracks 5/5 stars[2]
SoundtrackNet 4.5/5 stars[3]

The Return of the Jedi score was recorded at the Abbey Road Studios in January and February 1983. Again, John Williams conducted the London Symphony Orchestra and served as producer. Orchestrator Herbert W. Spencer, engineer Eric Tomlinson, music editor Kenneth Wannberg, and record supervisor Lionel Newman again reprised their respective duties. The score won another Academy Award nomination for Williams. Return of the Jedi, which is the original trilogy's longest score, was only released on a single-LP instead of a double-set like the Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back soundtracks before it.

Track listing[edit]

LP vinyl released by RSO; compact disc released by Polydor

Side 1
  1. "Main Title (The Story Continues)" – 5:09
  2. "Into the Trap" – 2:36
  3. "Luke and Leia" – 4:44
  4. "Parade of the Ewoks" – 3:25
  5. "Han Solo Returns (At the Court of Jabba the Hutt)" – 4:10
  6. "Lapti Nek (Jabba's Palace Band)" – 2:49
Side 2
  1. "The Forest Battle" – 4:01
  2. "Rebel Briefing" – 2:22
  3. "The Emperor" – 2:41
  4. "The Return of the Jedi" – 5:02
  5. "Ewok Celebration and Finale" – 8:00

Total Time: 44:59

Star Wars Trilogy: The Original Soundtrack Anthology[edit]

Star Wars Trilogy – The Original Soundtrack Anthology: "Return of the Jedi"
CD cover for disc 3 of the "Star Wars Trilogy; The Original Soundtrack Anthology" CD box-set.jpg
Cover of the original 1993 release.
Film score by John Williams and the London Symphony Orchestra
Released 1993
Recorded 1983
Genre Classical
Label Arista Records on behalf of Twentieth Century Fox Film Scores, a Bertelsmann Music Group Company
Producer Nick Redman

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 three in the set was devoted to Return of the Jedi, with further tracks on disc four.

  1. "20th Century Fox Fanfare with CinemaScope Extension" - 0:23
  2. "Main Title/Approaching the Death Star" - 5:22
  3. "Han Solo Returns (At the Court of Jabba the Hutt)" - 4:09
  4. "Fight in the Dungeon" - 3:41
  5. "The Return of the Jedi" - 5:02
  6. "The Emperor Arrives" - 2:07
  7. "The Death of Yoda" - 6:05
  8. "Parade of the Ewoks" - 3:27
  9. "Luke and Leia" - 4:47
  10. "The Emperor Confronts Luke" - 3:29
  11. "Into the Trap" - 2:39
  12. "First Ewok Battle/Fight With the Fighters" - 7:24
  13. "The Forest Battle" - 4:04
  14. "The Final Duel/Into the Death Star" - 3:40
  15. "The Emperor's Death" - 2:44
  16. "Darth Vader's Death" - 2:33
  17. "Through the Flames" - 1:39
  18. "Leia Breaks the News/Funeral Pyre for a Jedi" - 2:22
  19. "Ewok Celebration/Finale" - 7:58
Bonus Tracks (disc four of the same set)
  1. "Heroic Ewok/The Fleet Goes Into Hyperspace"
  2. "The Ewok Battle"
  3. "Lapti Nek"
  4. "Faking the Code"
  5. "Brother and Sister"
  6. "Leia is Wounded/Luke and Vader Duel"
  7. "The Return of the Jedi (Alternate)"
  8. "Leia Breaks the News (Alternate)/Funeral Pyre for a Jedi (Film Version)"
  9. "Ewok Celebration (Film Version) /End Credits (Film Version)"

The Special Edition[edit]

Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
Return of the Jedi 2004 cover.jpg
Film score by John Williams
Released 1997, 2004
Recorded January 17, 21, 22 & 31 and
February 1, 3, 4 & 10, 1983
Genre Classical
Length 2:28:04
Label Sony Classical
Producer John Williams, Nick Redman
Star Wars soundtrack chronology
Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
Episode I: The Phantom Menace
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[4]
iTunes 4.5/5 stars[5]
  • The expanded edition on RCA (1997) and Sony Classical (2004) contained the score's 1997 remix. (It was falsely advertised with the legend "Now available on RCA (1997) and Sony Classical (2004) presenting the complete score"). 2-CD.
Disc one
No. Title Length
1. "20th Century Fox Fanfare" (Alfred Newman, 1954) 0:22
2. "Main Title/Approaching the Death Star/Tatooine Rendezvous" (contains the hidden track "Death Star in Disarray" (source music counterpart to "Darth Vader's Death") at – 5:04– 5:38) 9:17
3. "The Droids Are Captured"   1:21
4. "Bounty for a Wookiee"   2:50
5. "Han Solo Returns"   4:01
6. "Luke Confronts Jabba/Den of the Rancor/Sarlacc Sentence"   8:51
7. "The Pit of Carkoon/Sail Barge Assault"   6:02
8. "The Emperor Arrives/The Death of Yoda/Obi-Wan's Revelation"   10:58
9. "Alliance Assembly"   2:10
10. "Shuttle Tydirium Approaches Endor"   4:09
11. "Speeder Bike Chase/Land of the Ewoks"   9:38
12. "The Levitation/Threepio's Bedtime Story"   2:46
13. "Jabba's Baroque Recital"   3:09
14. "Jedi Rocks"   2:42
15. "Archival Bonus Track: Sail Barge Assault (Alternate)"   5:04
Disc two
No. Title Length
1. "Parade of the Ewoks"   3:28
2. "Luke and Leia"   4:46
3. "Brother and Sister/Father and Son/The Fleet Enters Hyperspace/Heroic Ewok"   10:40
4. "Emperor's Throne Room"   3:26
5. "The Battle of Endor I"
  • "Into the Trap" (2:30)
  • "Forest Ambush" (2:00)
  • "Scout Walker Scramble" (2:04)
  • "Prime Weapon Fires" (5:16)"  
6. "The Lightsaber/The Ewok Battle"   4:31
7. "The Battle of Endor II"
  • "Leia is Wounded" (1:02)
  • "The Duel Begins" (1:51)
  • "Overtaking the Bunker" (1:00)
  • "The Dark Side Beckons" (3:33)
  • "The Emperor’s Death" (2:37)"  
8. "The Battle of Endor III"
  • "Superstructure Chase" (1:53)
  • "Darth Vader's Death" (2:34)
  • "The Main Reactor" (1:36)"  
9. "Leia's News/Light of the Force"   3:24
10. "Victory Celebration/End Title"   8:34
11. "Ewok Feast/Part of the Tribe"   4:02
12. "Archival Bonus Track: The Forest Battle (Concert Suite)"   4:05

Although released as the complete score, there are several cues not on the Special Edition that have been released on previous releases. These include:

  • "Lapti Nek" (Album) – This is released on the anthology set and is replaced on the SE with "Jedi Rocks".
  • "Leia's News" (Alternate) – This is released on the anthology set. The film version however is heard on the SE.
  • "Ewok Celebration" (Ewok Source) – This is released on the anthology set but is replaced on the SE with the new celebration music written for the SE.
  • "Ewok Celebration" (Choir Source) – This is released on the anthology set and is an alternate vocal mix (using only the choir, not the Ewok voices).

Unreleased cues[edit]

Currently, several source cues and other material are unavailable. Many of these master tapes could not be located in time for the score's special edition release and are presumed lost. These tracks include:

  1. Jabba the Hutt's Concert Suite - All but the final portion of this original recording, incorrectly edited onto the end of the cue "Han Solo Returns" on the Anthology, remains unreleased. (This same portion is heard on the Return of the Jedi DVD menu as well).
  2. Film Version of Lapti Nek (Original Source) - Several versions of this source cue written by John Williams' son Joseph are available. Currently available are the album version on the Anthology and an extended album version and an instrumental track released on an LP single. However, the film version has yet to be released.
  3. English Version of Lapti Nek (Sung by Joseph Williams) - This cue can be heard partially in From Star Wars to Jedi: The Making of a Saga, but remains unreleased.
  4. Max Rebo Band Song (Sail Barge Dance) --Source Cue - This piece, performed by the resident musicians in Jabba's court (The Max Rebo Band) has never been released. It is heard after Chewbacca is taken away and also on Jabba's sail barge (hence its title). This cue can also be heard almost totally complete in From Star Wars to Jedi: The Making of a Saga, but remains unreleased.
  5. Unknown Source Cue - this cue is not used in the film but is credited to Joseph Williams. Nothing more is known.
  6. Alternate Film Takes - Several cues such as "Superstructure Chase" are presented on the SE using incorrect and often flubbed takes.
  7. Battle For Endor Insert - This insert can be heard in the film when Chewbacca and the Ewoks use the AT-ST to blow up another AT-ST and is similar to a section from the "The Forest Battle Concert Suite" but has never been released.
  8. Ewok Celebration (Film Version) - Two versions of this cue have been released, however, neither preserves the actual original recording used in the film.