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Park Wars Released 71

BillyC writes "Park Wars, the parody of Phantom Menace using characters from South Park, has been released! The final result is not what the creators originally intended - using over an hour of the film's actual audio would be shaky, legally speaking - but the final result is still pretty funny, and the visuals are certainly very impressive. It's available in both streaming and downloadable versions - Sorenson Quicktime only, unfortunately." I need funny. I need mac. Damn.
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Park Wars Released

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    Here is what you can do to be really helpful.

    Crack the Windows Quicktime player, serials can be had in pretty much any IRC channel. Export it to uncompressed .avi, its pretty big but it goes pretty fast.

    Get virtual dub from, it's a video editor that is licensed under the GPL and runs on the Windows platform.
    Open the huge .avi file and go to Video>Compression and select DivX fast motion codec. File>Save AVI... will convert and save it, this too is pretty speedy on a faster computer.

    Now anyone on any platform can watch the movies, not just on Mac and Windows, using the crApple player. Not to mention that the DivX runs at full speed and quality with a smaller filesize than the Sorensen, and on less modest hardware. I've seen a 30fps Sorensen turn into a slide show on a P2-333, whereas the same movie in 30fps DivX ran smooth.

    The crApple engineers might want to have a look at this, and stop licensing Sorensen.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    If you're looking for another Star War hoot, check out the George Lucas at's Kurt's comics. [] They are classic, I love how darth got his helmet.

    George when does the puppet show tour? :)
  • Is it just me, or is the lameness filter, well, lame? It prevented me from putting an ellipsis into a comment the other day. Three periods in a row. What's up with that? There's a huge difference between a full-fledged p**is bird and three dots in a row. I would expect that if it's not possible to make code that intelligent, just give up. What's a little ascii art going to hurt anyway, except to give moderators something to mod down.
  • excuse my silly rant, but giving into propriatary formats only makes the problem worse because then the people using them are actually getting away with it! duh!, the only reason for formats to be propriatary is so we depend on them, and thus thier platforms!

    we need to let content providers know that there are platforms that dont use propriatary codecs.

    i know /. readers already know all this, but it needs saying again. maybe a journalist or someone else making a movie will read this comment.

    thankfully we have the xiph [] project.

  • Interesting... I just got the hi-res one (hah!) at 99.3kB/s from that site.
  • by Malc ( 1751 )
    I think you have a perfectly valid point, and I tend to agree with you and the other people that responded. But, if you want to get your point across, you should tone it down a bit. Moderators who are Mac fans are guaranteed to mod you down as flamebait! (I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt and assuming you weren't modded down for having a different opinion). I too feel very strongly about that dreadful app... I looked at that critique that one of your respondents posted a link to, and found it spot on and that it described all of my gripes and frustrations with the program.

    And no, I don't think you were off-topic either. The article intro did explicitly mention that the movie was in QuickTime format. Your comments were obviously related to that.

    Nice try... just tone it down a bit.
  • by Malc ( 1751 ) on Friday March 16, 2001 @06:40AM (#359327)
    The movie was well done, so all credit to authors for that. However, I thought parodies were supposed to be humourous, even original or satirical? This was boring. I got one laught: for 20 secs during the mid-film interruption. The rest was just a re-telling of the story with South Park characters. No wonder they were worried about being accused of plagiarism. So unimiginative.
  • I set a mirror up with the following titles:

    Both movies require QuickTime.


  • From a little blurb on the front page it looked like the original goal of the project was to remake most of the Phantom Menace with South Park characters. But Lucasfilm contacted them and said using, the originally planned, 64 minutes of Phantom Menace dialog was crossing the line of parody vs. plagiarism. So that's why the Park Wars movie is only 11 minutes long. But I suppose this post is just plagiarism of their site too.
  • Dam you, George Lucas, for foxing a project with a massive amount of potential.

    Think about while you shell out those US$50 when Episode II comes out... 50 you ask? Well, you aren't going to watch Episode II just once, are you? And you have to have that cool Pepsi/Taco Bell/Whatever merchandise. And you need that Episode II t-shirt, don't you?

  • by Accipiter ( 8228 ) on Friday March 16, 2001 @11:54AM (#359331)
    What you're not realizing is that people have the right to parody.

    Fair Use specifically covers the fact that if something comes out, anyone who wishes to do a parody or satire of it is perfectly within the law to do it. The same goes for criticism or comment.

    "The Phantom Menace" is undoubtedly a trademarked phrase, yet you see it in movie reviews. The name "Luke Skywalker" is a trademarked name, yet it appears in countless articles. Why? Because it's legal to do so.

    And while you say that this demo will be used in seeking future employment, you're probably right. Except, the authors of the parody are NOT using the trademarked characters to obtain their employment - the employer is judging based on creativity and/or technical skill. These merits would be the same even if this wasn't a parody.

    They have every right to show off their skills.

    -- Give him Head? Be a Beacon?

  • Newsflash: South Park isn't made using paper cutouts, but using some nifty SGI workstations.

    Yes, they use advanced hardware and graphics software to create the paper cutout look-and-feel.

    Press-release from SGI regarding Bigger, Longer and Uncut: /1999/ju ly/south_park.html
  • Given the peripatetic life styles of the moderators (showing up at trade shows etc.) why not get them TiBooks running OS X?
  • Well, I'll hate myself in the morning, but I've been inspired to put online my take of "Jurassic Park", with finger puppets. [].

    (.AVI, 5MByte download.)
  • Can anyone who has downloaded the movie zip it up for those if us stuck behind firewalls that block .mov/.avi/.rm?
  • Well, I can say the best thing about this was the inclusion of "Now You're A Man" from the Orgazmo soundtrack! It's a song that needs to be heard much more than it has.

    Aside from that, they even got the credit for the "Chewbacca" song wrong! It's by Supernova, not Green Jelly. I guess they'd know that if they actually owned a copy of the Clerks soundtrack.


    Freedom is Slavery! Ignorance is Strength! Monopolies offer Choice!
  • by Numeric ( 22250 ) on Friday March 16, 2001 @06:25AM (#359337) Homepage Journal
    This site has movie clips in Real Video and Windows Media. l

    Warning: This not the full movie.

  • You can boot the Windows partition you keep "just for Diablo II" and "just for playing DVDs", install QuickTime for Windows and watch the movie.

  • I'm going to probably go into windows to watch a dvd (so i get working tv output... and my webserver happens to be my own machine..) so there is a new location for this mpeg version: []
  • by Other ( 29546 ) on Friday March 16, 2001 @12:34PM (#359341)
    I just encoded an mpeg version available at: 20.mpg [] (minus any spaces)

    It's 78megs right now...yeesh. MPEG-4 would be better.
  • Anyone else notice them in the background?
  • "God willing, we'll all be back in Spaceballs 2, the search for more money." - Yogurt
  • by citizenc ( 60589 ) <cary@glidedesign . c a> on Friday March 16, 2001 @06:18AM (#359344) Journal
    Well, I just watched the film, and it is great -- especially the way they handled the George-Lucas-is-a-Greedy-Butt-Munch stuff: It is normal for the first half or so (following the film, using the sounds) ... and then Shelly, Stan's older sister, walks onto the set and launches into this big speech about copyright laws and stuff. =)

    Does anybody know if the full film was ever finished?

  • From The Park Wars Jedi Council []:
    Q: How hard was it to work around the legalities of South Park and Star Wars to create Park Wars?

    Park Wars.. well long story, we didn't get any permission.. but comedy central lawyers contacted us, and basically said that since it was done so well and in such good fun, that they wouldn't be carrying out any legal actions, instead, they featured it on the comedy central's main page, and sent Ted and Me a whole bunch of cool Southpark stuff.
    Why didn't George Lucas do THAT? It's the same idea as that "Wazzup Superfriends" animation that was floating around a while ago: both BUD -AND- the copyright holders of the Superfriends characters could have sued the pants off the creators.. but they didn't. Why? Because it, like Park Wars, was done in good fun. No money was changing hands here..

    Dam you, George Lucas, for foxing a project with a massive amount of potential.

  • You can download it; there's a little disk icon that they even put there for you to do so.

    At any rate, what was funny about it? It was Episode 1, just with the southpark characters. They didn't say anything funny, and it was just as boring as the movie they tried to spoof.
  • Well, i didn't need to right click; i shift clicked. I imagine its the same on the mac (if you're using NS, that is), but i can't be sure.
  • by frankie ( 91710 ) on Friday March 16, 2001 @07:44AM (#359349) Journal

    I'm a raving evangelista [], but you really don't need Sorenson [] for low resolution paper cutouts like South Park. Each character only has a half dozen moving parts and 3 poses (front, side, rear). A Flash animation could do it with BETTER image quality [], lower file size, and of course wider compatibility [].

    (Alternately, someone could try to convince Steve Jobs to release QT5 for *nix)

    Compare to AYB.swf [] -- Flash works freaking great for animation. Lastly, compare to the classic Star Wars ASCIImation []. If you want to talk about "2 Much Time" -- just watching that one for a couple minutes makes me feel like the world's biggest slacker. Imagine the amount of brain drain it took to make the damn thing.

  • You have to be logged in to sharehouse to view it, but I figure every little bit helps.
  • Just get Adobe Premiere, import the movie, export as *.avi and you're good.
    The question is, can you run Premiere with WINE?
  • We know that Sarcasta has an entire armada of iMacs. She's probably already downloaded and watched the damn thing.


  • You bastard!


  • I found it VERY hard to download this yesterday; the "download" link simply points to a page that views it as an EMBED command. ...Due to the Akamai naming scheme, the /. lameness filter prevents me from directly posting it, so here's a link to a file that contains only a link:

    This is a (faster) link to the actual movie (@Akamai via []
    Or go to the official site in one click here (can't directly download though) []

  • Here's some more goodies in the same style:
    Other Park Wars stuff by 2MuchTime Ltd []
    Planet Terror's Platrix [] (Matrix/South Park) (direct download) []
    StanzHouse South Park Matrix [] (different than above) (direct download) []
    A slew of others [] including Bigger, Longer, Uncut

  • You don't need a Mac to download QuickTime. There is a Windows port that works just as well. Just go to, click QuickTime, download, and download the [gulp] Windows port.
  • Has anyone reformatted the movie into something less lame than Quicktime so we either a) don't have to use annoyware or b) can view this on our FreeBSD boxen?
  • I still have a very old copy of what I guess is a beta version of Park Wars, and it's a 42 megabyte mpeg. It was hilarious. This one's okay, too. :-)
  • People, put yourselves in poor George Lucas's shoes. He has consistently put out great quality entertainment (Willow, Ewok Adventures, Jar Jar Binks), and is just a struggling artist, not unlike the Park Wars guys. Now, George has to protect the "integrity" of his creation, right? I mean, he wouldn't just sit back and allow the complex mythology of Star Wars, the epic, timeless battle between good and evil, be reduced to something like a trade war, right? And he couldn't allow The Force become something like...oh, a virus, right? I mean, George has to keep a tight rein on these things, or who knows what could happen?

    Oh, and he also needs to make more money.


  • The spoofs have been so popular that Bud finally spoofed themselves and about time too. "What are you doing?" "Watching the market recap, drinking an import." Great stuff. I love the Halflife spoof that uses the commercial's audio.
  • but comedy central lawyers contacted us, and basically said that since it was done so well and in such good fun, that they wouldn't be carrying out any legal actions, instead, they featured it on the comedy central's main page, and sent Ted and Me a whole bunch of cool Southpark stuff.
    Why didn't George Lucas do THAT?

    Because it's not about the story any more; It's about the money. This really shouldn't surprise anyone.

    The change actually came when we saw Jedi. The ewoks were cute even when they were beginning to roast our fearless heroes. Jedi was still pretty good, though. I especially liked the redwood chase scenes on the speeder bikes, myself.

    But just take a look at episode one; A kid who can't particularly act, a full-CG character who is purely there to amuse children (note the tongue grabbing the fruit gag) and occasionally walks hovering two inches above the ground, and so on. Really, the only good scenes are the pod race (which was amazing, mostly because of the sound effects) and the fight scenes, which are way too slow, and really quite hokey. Yeah, Maul is just going to stand there while he gets eviscerated. Even I could have dodged that one.

    When it's about the money, you put guarding your property above all else. Budweiser didn't care about holding onto "Wazzzzzup" because anyone can repeat that phrase. That's precisely why it was such a brilliant ad campaign. They associated themselves with an already-present meme, exaggerating it for effect. That agency deserves millions - and to be associated with a better beer than Budweiser.


  • I wonder if they could have used the entire audio of The Phantom Menace if they sold Park Wars (instead of giving it away for free) bundled with a broken copy of The Phantom Menace?

    That way, you only have one copy of the audio, completely paid for, and it is all fair use, right?

    They could still give away an 11 minute trailer, since it seems George Lucas and Co. were cool with that.

    Or am I way off base?
  • Good way of spoiling the film.


    Mad Scientists with too much time on thier hands

  • He has consistently put out great quality entertainment (Willow, Ewok Adventures, Jar Jar Binks)

    While I won't argue about the other two, what's wrong with Willow?

  • I liked it up to the point where they stopped with the movie soundtrack. The turkey droids were pretty damn funny.

  • After working on the movie for a few months it was brought to our attention (heck, we'll say it, by Lucasfilm) that using 64 minutes of audio straight from the movie crosses the boundaries from parody to "rip off." (duh) Instead of just tossing what we had worked on, we decided to come up with another solution.

    All I can say is that this is another in a series of true classics.

    get yours today

  • I would normally agree with you. I regularly convert "cool" quicktime vids to mpeg for linux, but almost every quicktime vid I've downloaded over the past year has some sort of protection enabled. If you try to load the video into a conversion program, such as Premiere, it gives you the same kind of message you get if you try to load an encrypted DVD file (file doesn't exist). BTW, I use TMPG for Windows (since it is free) and it works great. Anybody out there know how to disable quicktime protection? And while I'm on it, I know this feature has been present for some time, but did apple make a 64x64 button or something in the latest quicktime authoring software?!? That's the only way I can explain everybody using it all of a sudden.
  • Who knows how to unprotect "protected" quicktime movies? Someone must have done this by now, but I can't find anything on google or the USENET.
  • Well the company name says it all, 2 much time. I don't know where or how, or why these guys come up with this stuff but its a riot. I especially loved the lightsaber battle, just because "qui gon-gin" did a dramatic death speach, after his head was cut off, and you could see his body bleeding in the background! We could have done with a little kenny/jar_jar dying but I suppose that wasn't in the script, (just what every one wished was in the script) Ah well, at least we know the mystery of Anakin's father (watch the credits for those who don't know)
    Geoffrey Cameron Peart
    McMaster Software Engineering
  • This is a bit old, but the Interface Hall of Shame [] has a good critique of QT4...
  • Hmm. I double click the downloaded movie, and it wants to access the net. I say no three times, jesus I do not know you. Then it crashes explorer. Delete.
  • by skoda ( 211470 ) on Friday March 16, 2001 @06:40AM (#359373) Homepage
    Lucas has consistently guarded his properties with great zeal. This is nothing new, nor is it surprising. The end result is that Lucas has created a veritable empire of "Star Wars" properties, generally of very high quality (movie plots aside :), and has also made a tidy profit from them. And that's his perogative.

    Furthermore, while "Park Wars" claims to be a not-for-profit endeavor, and is likely a 'labor of love', it should also be expected that this would be used as a demo, in the least, in seeking future employment. As such, they would clearly be seeking to (indirectly) profit from Lucas' work. Furthermore, they wrote that Comedy Central used it for part of one of their programs. Thus, Comedy Central would also seek to profit, indirectly, from Lucas' property.

    I have a hard time getting worked up about George Lucas & co. stopping others from using over an hour of their work without licensing.

    D. Fischer
  • I download the movie with 155KB sec. Normally one should expect a site on slashdot would get, well, slasdottet. Specially when it's a SouthPark movie for them to download
    It's nice to see someone thinking ahead and setting up the bandwidth resources needed, I guess that Akamai really works ;-)
  • Go to the site instead and download it, because they use Akamai, it will direct you to a server close you for optimal speed, I get 156kb sec.
  • At leat it played the Spirit of Christmas that I downloaded, and the Lego 2001.

    It didn't play ParkWars, though.
  • both BUD -AND- the copyright holders of the Superfriends characters could have sued the pants off the creators.. but they didn't. Why? Because it, like Park Wars, was done in good fun. No money was changing hands here..

    Don't forget that companies also benefit tremendously from spoofs of their products and commercials. Enough spoofs can turn a simple commercial into a cultural icon, as BUD recognized with its Wazzup line.


    OR just remove the spaces in these urls below. Yes this is because of the lameness filter... /5/848/51/4459ee59e4867e/1a1a1aaa2198c6279707 73d80669d84574a8d80d 3cb12453c025 89f25382f65ec7399dcc3c9d0f7af152c437/parkwars_320. mov High Quality 320x148

    http://a1552. e4bb45/1a1a1aaa2198c627970773d80669d84574a8d80d3cb 12453 c02589f25382f65ec7399dcc3c9d0 f7af152c437/ Lower Quality 216x100

    Fight censors!
  • He does generally support spoofs... he has the "star wars fan film network" link on his starwars page... and I swear I remember seeing him interviewed in saying that he encourages young film makers to do their independant projects. I'm just not sure that the original parkwars idea is really so much a spoof as just a funny alternate video track. I'd be pretty choked if I was selling a movie in video and someone were to overdub the audio with the dialogue done in cockny accents and start giving away the new video claiming it was a "parody." I think this crosses the same line.
  • I am a little put out by the fact that I had to use somebody else's computer to see the movie. I complain to the Sorenson people annually, and I think everybody who does not use Macintosh or Windows should do so as well. The instructions for complaining are on the xanim page. []
  • How do you right click on a Mac?

    I can't watch on my 3 button mouse machine.


  • Its too bad they couldn't do what they want, but oh well, its only for fun. I'd much rather watch something funny like a Star Wars meets the Princess Bride short, index.shtml Or Dave Macomber's Duality (which kicks some serious ass) /
  • Jar-Jar: "Oh my god, they've killed Darth Maul!"

    Obi-Wan"You Bastards!"

  • From the article: but that it's now online for you to watch (only if you want to). Please be advised there is some coarse language (well what some people may consider coarse) in it, if we'd have to rate it, we'd say it's PG-13. Hope you enjoy it! if you don't, please email us and hurt our feelings.
  • by Cheese_isgood ( 324398 ) on Friday March 16, 2001 @06:21AM (#359385) Homepage
    Oh my God I've killed Obi!
  • Yeah one or two parts were kinda ok... and they did work with 3d effects n stuff... But it wasn't 1/10 as funny as south park is... Shoulda used kenny as the dude that dies in the light sabre battle for one... Stupid hard core Star wars fans would have laughed at the start because they know so much about it... bleh... A waste of time watching it really.
  • This might be interesting. 8-year-old potty heads playing the role of Darth Vader. I could just imagine George saying "Use the force you jackass."
  • I like to take 95% and round up. So what, I'm off by 5%. Kiss my ass... Besides, I'm still using Minix...
  • I desperately tried to download the movie but failed due to time-outs. Does anyone know where the movie ist mirrored? Thanks you in advance.
  • Thanx you very much for you DivX-Work, dude!
  • Hi Folks,

    I've been reading through the thread of discussion here. Rather interesting stuff. Of course we appreciate the praise you have for our little project.

    We actually didn't mean to make it sound like we were bashing Lucas. We just found it pretty stupid to animate something to a previously done soundtrack of a previously done (not the greatest) movie. There is no point in that.

    We discussed the issue of the movie with some marketing folks at Lucasfilm. They weren't threatening or anything about it. But on the other hand very friendly. Lucasfilms definitely supports Fan Films and fan appreciation.

    Just wanted to clear that up. Also wanted to add, since it's been mentioned.. I am also a Linux user along with PC and Mac, and yes I understand the frustration with Quicktime, etc.. I assure you there WILL be MPEG4 and Realvideo formats available soon, we're working on it. The big problem is we don't want to risk killing the bandwith on our server, and of course Akamai is not going to host MPEG4 and Realvideo, as that deal was done through Apple. So as soon we have mirrors and the versions ready by mid-late next week you can watch it in that format. One last thing there is an icon on the DOWNLOAD and STREAMING pages of a disk you can right click and save as to save the movie.. we don't understand how people miss that.. is it not apparent?

    Ah well. Thanks again.

    Ayaz Asif

The absent ones are always at fault.