Displaying items by tag: Media Play News

All right, we’ve got a few odds and ends to report on for you today...

First up, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will be releasing a new Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone: Anniversary 8-Film Collector’s Edition on 11/2, featuring all 8 films in the series in both 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray, packaged in a cardboard replica of the Hogwarts Express (SRP $139.99). The box will also include a replica train ticket and a photo book featuring a look at props and other items from the films. You can see the open packaging below the break. Before you get too excited, these are the exact same discs released previously. But if you’re a fan and you haven’t yet upgraded to 4K, this might be just the thing.

Also in 4K Ultra HD news today, we’ve learned that Koch Media in Germany has delayed their wide release of David Lynch’s Dune on Blu-ray and 4K (as well as their web store exclusive Dune: Ultimate Edition 4K/Blu-ray set) to 10/14. (It was previously set to street on 8/26). The reason is that this will now be the only place you’ll be able to see Ballyhoo Motion Pictures’ feature-length documentary The Sleeper Must Awaken: Making Dune. As we’ve reported previously, the Arrow Video 4K and Blu-ray release will street on 8/31 as originally planned, but it will no longer include the documentary. Adjust your plans accordingly. [Read on here...]

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We’ve got some interesting news to report here at The Bits today...

First, the Warner Archive Collection has announced a number of new Blu-ray releases that are coming soon from the label, including Drunken Master II (1994 – aka The Legend of Drunken Master) starring Jackie Chan (mastered from a new 4K scan of the original camera negative), The Private Lives of Elizabeth & Essex (1939), They Won’t Believe Me (1947), The Yearling (1946), Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House (1948), Escape from Fort Bravo (1953), and Athena (1954). Street dates are TBA.

Arrow Video has announced its June release slate, which is set to include Dario Argento’s The Bird with the Crystal Plumage in 4K Ultra HD, as well as Sam Peckinpah’s Major Dundee, Masumura Yasuzo’s Irezumi, Jill Gevargizian’s The Stylist, and a 5-film box set of Italian crime films called Years of Lead that includes Like Rabid Dogs, Savage Three, No, The Case is Happily Resolved, and Colt 38: Special Squad. [Read on here...]

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We’re picking things up here at The Bits today with more new disc reviews...

I’ve recently posted my thoughts on Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla (2014) in 4K from Warner Bros., Pete Docter’s Soul in 4K from Pixar, Mel Brooks’ Spaceballs in Blu-ray and 4K from Kino Lorber Studio Classics, and Paul Greengrass’ News of the World in 4K from Universal.

Meanwhile, Tim has just posted a look at Alex de la Iglesia’s The Day of the Beast (1995) in 4K from Severin Films.

And Dennis has turned in his review of George Sidney’s Show Boat (1951) on Blu-ray from the Warner Archive Collection.

In announcement news today, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has officially set Shaka King’s Judas and the Black Messiah for release on Blu-ray and DVD on 5/4 (SRP $35.99 and $28.98), with the Digital release expected on 4/27, and PVOD available on 4/2. Extras on the disc-based versions will include 2 featurettes (Fred Hampton for the People and Unexpected Betrayal). [Read on here...]

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Okay, we’ve got some serious ground to cover in today’s My Two Cents update, so let’s get right to it...

First, we’ve just posted Michael Coate’s brand new History, Legacy & Showmanship column here at The Bits, featuring a terrific new retrospective of George Lucas’ THX 1138 in honor of the film’s 50th anniversary (which was last week on 3/11 – the piece was delayed due to a technical issue). The column takes an in-depth look back at the original theatrical release and also features a great roundtable discussion with film historian Chris Barsanti, documentary filmmaker Gary Leva, and original Director of Fan Relations at Lucasfilm Craig Miller. I think you’ll really enjoy it. So you’ll find that here.

Next up, as some of you may have noticed over the weekend, we posted word on Saturday (see here) that video distributors had begun listing a 4-film Indiana Jones Collection for release on 4K Ultra HD on 6/8. This is still not to be considered official until Paramount and Lucasfilm make their actual announcement, however be aware that I’ve now confirmed it with multiple film industry sources in addition to retail and distribution sources. And it’s really not all that surprising given that 6/12 is marks the 40th anniversary of the original film’s theatrical release. We expect the set to include all four existing films in 4K with HDR10 high dynamic range and the previous DTS-HD Master Audio lossless sound mixes (but that’s still subject to change). [Editor’s Note: We’ve just confirmed that the set WILL include Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos audio. Details to follow shortly.] The 5-disc set will also include a disc of bonus features that are TBA. Of course, we’ll post more information on this as it comes in.

The other big news today is that our friends at The Criterion Collection have just unveiled their June slate of titles. [Read on here...]

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We’ve got a couple odds and ends for you today...

First, the big news... Shout! Factory has just reached a multi-year distribution agreement with the Portland-based Laika animation studio. The deal gives Shout! the U.S. packaged media distribution rights to the studio’s first four films: Kubo and the Two Strings (2016), The Boxtrolls (2014), ParaNorman (2012), and Coraline (2009). According to the report on The Hollywood Reporter, new bonus content is already in development for these films. Not only are new Blu-rays obviously in the offing, we can’t help thinking how great these titles would look again on Blu-ray 3D and for the first time on 4K Ultra HD as well.

Also today, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has just announced Supernatural: The Fifteenth and Final Season and Supernatural: The Complete Series for Blu-ray and DVD release on 5/25. The Fifteenth Season set includes 2 new featurettes, deleted scenes, a gag reel, and more (SRP $49.99 for Blu-ray and $44.98 for DVD). The Complete Series set includes all 327 episodes and all the previous bonus content, plus a 68-page book (SRP $359.99 for Blu-ray and $329.99 for DVD). [Read on here...]

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All right Bits readers, we’ve got a pretty significant news update for you today...

We’ve been tracking many of these titles, but a few of the 4K catalog titles we’re going to talk about today are breaking news, thanks to our old friends over at Media Play News.

They’ve just issued the September 2020 Digital edition of their magazine, which features an extensive look at the recent surge of 4K Ultra HD catalog releases. The publication’s editor, Stephanie Prange (who, full disclosure, I’ve known for many years), wrote a great longform piece for the issue called 4K Ultra HD: Into the Vaults about the process of preparing classic catalog films for release on the format.

Not only is it informative (and I should note that I was among the people interviewed therein), it includes some great news about forthcoming titles. [Read on here...]

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All right, we have a new update on the health of the home entertainment market from the Digital Entertainment Group (DEG) for the first half of 2020. And the numbers are not entirely unexpected...

According to the DEG, total home entertainment spending (all categories) was up about 26% for the first half of 2020 (through the end of June) compared to the same period last year.

Total digital spending was up 36% during that period (the specific breakdown was +33% for electronic sales, +33% for VOD, and +37% for subscription streaming). That’s the good news.

The bad news—which by now should not be unexpected—is that packaged goods (read: discs) were down 17.2% in the first half of this year from the same period in 2019. Specifically, Q2 2020 was down 11.11% from Q2 2019, this after a 22.4% decline in Q1 2020 (as we reported here back in early July). [Read on here...]

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All right, we have one last post here at The Bits for this week... and it’s a bit of a bummer. But let me start at the beginning...

Early last week, I started to receive word from retail and industry sources that Disney had made an internal decision to suspend the 4K Ultra HD release of live action catalog titles from both their own vaults and those of their newly acquired 20th Century Fox label.

In essence, my sources said, beyond new release theatrical titles, animated fare from Disney and Pixar, or Star Wars and Marvel-related projects, there were no plans at the studio going forward to release titles on physical 4K Ultra HD—future releases would be 4K Digital only.

The rumor began to leak elsewhere online last weekend, so readers understandably started asking me about it.

But that’s a fairly significant piece of news, so I wanted to take my time in trying to get to the bottom of it before commenting. And that’s exactly what I’ve spent much of this past week doing. [Read on here...]

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We’ve got a bit of fun news today, some release news and some other...

First up though, we also have a new disc review. Dennis has just turned in a look at director George Marshall’s classic Destry Rides Again (1939) now on Blu-ray from the Criterion Collection. It’s a classic western starring James Stewart and Marlene Dietrich that’s well worth your time.

And while we’re speaking of Criterion, that brings us to our first bit of release news, which is that Criterion has just announced a Bruce Lee: His Greatest Hits Blu-ray box set (Spine# 1036), which is set to include The Big Boss (1971), Fist of Fury (1972), The Way of the Dragon (1972), Enter the Dragon (1973), and Game of Death (1978). [Read on here...]

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