My Two Cents
Wednesday, 11 August 2021 14:24

Criterion announces its first 4K titles, plus Inglourious Basterds in Ultra HD, Superman: The Animated Series on Blu-ray, new Scream titles & more!

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All right folks, this is a day a lot of us have been waiting a very long time for. Let’s get right into what is arguably the year’s biggest news...

Our friends at The Criterion Collection have finally announced that their first titles on the physical 4K Ultra HD format will include David Lynch’s Mulholland Dr., Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane, Jane Campion’s The Piano, Allen and Albert Hughes’s Menace II Society, Emeric Pressburger and Michael Powell’s The Red Shoes, and Richard Lester’s A Hard Day’s Night! The first of these is expected to arrive in November (we believe it will be Mulholland Dr.) and will be officially detailed next week when Criterion announces its full November slate. The rest will follow in subsequent months (starting—we believe—with Citizen Kane in December, given that 2021 is the film’s 80th anniversary). Per Criterion, each of their 4K titles will include the film on both 4K and Blu-ray (with most extras on the Blu-ray, allowing the 4K disc to have maximum room for video and audio data). Select films will also feature Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos sound.

Any way you slice it, this is outstanding news. We actually knew (thanks to our longtime industry sources) about three of those titles and had a pretty good line on a fourth. But by our reckoning, the fact that the company has announced no less than SIX 4K titles tells us that Criterion is seriously ALL IN on the Ultra HD format at long last. And that is the best news we’ve had all year for physical media.

But that’s not all of the news we have for you today, so let’s keep going! [Read on here...]

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Universal has finally announced the 4K Ultra HD release of Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds on 10/12. Unfortunately, the press release offers no indication of the HDR and audio formats, but we’ve asked the studio for confirmation and we’ll post an update here when we hear back. In terms of extras, you can expect the previous BD features to carry over here, including Extended & Alternate Scenes, a Roundtable Discussion with Quentin Tarantino, Brad Pitt and Elvis Mitchell, The New York Times Talk, the Nation’s Pride original short, The Making of Nation’s Pride, The Original Inglourious Basterds, and A Conversation with Rod Taylor. You can see the cover artwork below.

[Editor’s Note: We’ve heard back from Universal on the AV formats. HDR will be HDR10, HDR10+, and Dolby Vision. Audio will be 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio.]

On the regular Blu-ray front, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has just announced a Superman: The Complete Animated Series Blu-ray box set for release on 10/12 as well (SRP $69.99). All 54 episodes will be included on 6 Blu-rays, remastered in HD from the original 35mm interpositive film elements in the original 1.33 TV aspect ratio. Extras will begin with the all-new Superman: Timeless Icon featurette, produced specifically the Blu-ray release. It tells the story of the show’s production, featuring interviews with producers Bruce Timm and Paul Dini, director Dan Riba, writer Bob Goodman, casting/dialogue director Andrea Romano, and actors Tim Daly & Clancy Brown (the voices of Superman and Lex Luthor). You’ll also get 5 additional featurettes (including A Little Piece of Trivia, Superman: Learning to Fly, Building the Mythology: Superman’s Supporting Cast, Menaces of Metropolis: Behind the Villains of Superman, and The Despot Darkseid: A Villain Worthy of Superman), audio commentary on 3 episodes (Stolen Memories, The Last Son of Krypton – Part 1, and The Main Man – Part 2), and video commentary on the episode Mxyzpixilated. Again, you can see the cover art below. You’ll also get a Digital code granting access to the entire series via streaming.

Superman: The Animated Series (Blu-ray Disc)

Still not done: Shout! and Scream Factory have just revealed the rest of their October Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K slate. In addition to the first 5 Halloween films, which are due on 4K UHD on 10/5, look for Six Minutes to Midnight (BD), Little Vampire (BD), a Martial Arts Double Feature of Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story and Uleashed (BD), and a Liam Neeson Double Feature of Non-Stop and A Walk Among the Tombstones (BD), the Elvira’s Haunted Hills: Collector’s Edition (BD), and a Don Knotts: 5-Flim Collection of The Ghost and Mr. Chicken, The Reluctant Astronaut, The Shakiest Gun in the West, The Love God?, and How to Frame a Figg (BD) on 10/5, followed by Sin City: A Dame to Kill For (BD) and a Deadly Friend: Collector’s Edition (BD) on 10/12, Coppelia (BD) on 10/19, and Shiro Bako: The Movie (BD), Nothing But Trouble (BD), A Letter to Momo (BD), Killer Party (BD), and The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: The Complete Series (DVD) all on 10/26.

And let’s throw one more little gem of a rumor into the mix for you this afternoon: Our European retail sources have informed us that Studio Canal has just pulled Roland Emmerich’s Stargate (1994) out of print. That suggests to us that Studio Canal is working on a new 4K restoration that will likely arrive on 4K Ultra HD and remastered Blu-ray sometime next year.

Finally today, given the current difficult economic times of this past couple of years (which have unfortunately crushed online advertising and affiliate sales income), we ask that if you believe in and appreciate the work we do here at The Digital Bits, please consider making a donation to the site via PayPal (click here or the button below). Every little bit makes a difference in terms of helping us to keep the site going strong, and we really do appreciate it very much. And thank you again to every single one of you who have donated in the past, and to all those of you who support our work in other ways. We’re very grateful to have all of you as readers.

CLICK HERE to BACK THE BITS in our fight to preserve Physical Media

All right, we’ll leave you with a look at the cover artwork for some of the titles mentioned above and more, with pre-order links if available...

The Guns of Navarone (4K Ultra HD) Inglourious Basterds (4K Ultra HD) Scream (4K Ultra HD)

Fritz the Cat (Blu-ray Disc) Deadly Friend: Collector's Edition (Blu-ray Disc) Scream (Steelbook 4K Ultra HD)

Stay tuned...!

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