My Two Cents
Tuesday, 24 January 2017 18:19

Wishmaster Collection, Arrow’s Donnie Darko, 5 Centimeters Per Second & Harry Potter films coming to 4K UHD BD?

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All right, we’ve had family visiting for a couple weeks but things have finally started to get back to normal here, so we’re back to our usual daily updates. And we have a bunch of new release news to report today...

First up though, our own Russell Hammond has just posted the weekly Release Dates & Artwork update with all the latest Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K cover artwork and pre-order links. Don’t forget, anytime you order titles through our links you’re helping to support our work here at The Bits and we appreciate it!

Now then, in announcement news today, Lionsgate has just revealed that their next Vestron Video Collector’s Series release will include the Wishmaster Collection: 4-Film Set on 3/28 (SRP $49.99). Wishmaster will include audio commentary (with director Robert Kurtzman and screenwriter Peter Atkins), audio commentary (with Kurtzman and stars Andrew Divoff and Tammy Lauren), an isolated score selections track with an audio interview of composer Harry Manfredini, 6 featurettes (Out of the Bottle, The Magic Words, The Djinn and Alexandra, Captured Visions, Wish List, and Making of Wishmaster), trailers, TV spots, image galleries & more. Wishmaster 2: Evil Never Dies will include audio commentary (with writer/director Jack Sholder), a trailer, and a still gallery. Wishmaster 3: Beyond the Gates of Hell will include audio commentary (with director Chris Angel and cast members John Novak, Jason Connery, and Louisette Geiss), the Making of Wishmaster 3: Beyond the Gates of Hell featurette, and the trailer. And Wishmaster 4: The Prophecy will include audio commentary (with director Chris Angel and cast members Michael Trucco and Jason Thompson), audio commentary (with Angel and actor John Novak), the Wishmasterpiece Theatre featurette, and the trailer. [Read on here…]

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For those of you in the UK, Arrow Video has just announced that they’re working on a new Blu-ray of John Carpenter’s The Thing for release later this year.

Meanwhile, Arrow Video USA has set Wolf Guy for Blu-ray release on 4/25, along with the Three Brothers: Special Edition from Arrow Academy. The Assassin (L’Assassino) streets from Arrow Academy on 4/18. Also coming from Arrow on 4/18 are The Night Evelyn Came Out of the Grave and The Red Queen Kills Seven Times. And they have Kiju Yoshida: Love + Anarchism, Caltiki: The Immortal Monster, and Django Prepare a Coffin set for Blu-ray on 4/11.

Also, Arrow’s Donnie Darko: 4-Disc Limited Edition is officially due on 4/18 (SRP $49.95). The set will include new 4K restorations (presented in both 1080p Blu-ray and SD DVD) of both the Theatrical Cut and the Director’s Cut from the original camera negatives, supervised and approved by director Richard Kelly and cinematographer Steven Poster. Audio will be DTS-HD 5.1 on Blu-ray. Extras will include audio commentary (by writer-director Richard Kelly and actor Jake Gyllenhaal) on the Theatrical Cut, audio commentary (by Kelly, producer Sean McKittrick and actors Drew Barrymore, Jena Malone, Beth Grant, Mary McDonnell, Holmes Osborne, Katharine Ross, and James Duval) on the Theatrical Cut, audio commentary (by Kelly and filmmaker Kevin Smith) on the Director’s Cut, the brand-new Deus ex Machina: The Philosophy of Donnie Darko documentary, Kelly’s 1996 short film The Goodbye Place, The Donnie Darko Production Diary archival documentary, 20 deleted and alternate scenes with optional commentary by Kelly, archival interviews (with Kelly, actors Jake Gyllenhaal, Jena Malone, Drew Barrymore, James Duval, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Holmes Osborne, Noah Wyle and Katharine Ross, producers Sean McKittrick, Nancy Juvonen, Hunt Lowry and Casey La Scala, and cinematographer Steven Poster), 3 archival featurettes (They Made Me Do It, They Made Me Do It Too, and #1 Fan: A Darkomentary), storyboard comparisons, B-roll footage, the Cunning Visions infomercials, Gary Jules’ Mad World music video, galleries, trailers, TV spots, and an exclusive collector’s book. You can see the cover artwork for this title above left and below.

Moving on this afternoon, Acorn Media will release The Witness for the Prosecution on Blu-ray and DVD on 4/25.

Severin Films will release Return of Kung Fu: Trailers of Fury on Blu-ray on 3/14. The set includes “35 original trailers from The Golden Age of Martial Arts Cinema, starring such legends as Angela Mao, Bolo Yeung, Don Wong, Chang Yi, Bruce Li, Leanne Liu, Lo Lieh and even Chuck Norris. It’s an indomitable dynasty of Hong Kong classics that includes Yellow-Faced Tiger, Bruce and the Iron Finger, Revenge of the Shaolin Kid, The Avenging Boxer, Snuff-Bottle Collection, Hell’s Windstaff, Thundering Mantis, The Legendary Strike, Kung Fu Killers, Crazy Horse & Intelligent Monkey, Shaolin Invincible Sticks and more!” There’s also audio commentary. SRP is $24.95. Note that Severin also has Drive-In Massacre due on Blu-ray that same day.

Discotech Media has set Makoto Shinkai’s anime 5 Centimeters Per Second for Blu-ray release on 2/28. Makoto is better known for his new animated classic Your Name, which is taking the world by storm at the moment. And if you like either of those, we highly recommend you check out his The Garden of Words, which is now available on Blu-ray (via this Amazon link) from Section 23 Films.

Speaking of anime, Funimation has announced Starmyu: Complete Series for Blu-ray release on 3/7, a Wolf Children: Hosoda Collector’s Edition for Blu-ray release on 3/14, Attack on Titan: Junior High on Blu-ray on 3/21, and Steins;Gate – Load Region of Deja Vum, Tenchi! Muyo! War On Geminar, Luck & Logic: Season One, and Fairy Tail: Collection Seven all on Blu-ray on 3/28.

Kino Lorber has revealed that Michael Oblowitz’s The World, Then the Fireworks (1997) is coming soon to Blu-ray and DVD. Also coming soon is David Miller’s Twist of Fate (1954) and the Jerry Lewis comedy Visit to a Small Planet (1960), directed by Norman Taurog.

The Warner Archive has set Ken Russell’s The Boyfriend, starring Twiggy, for Blu-ray release on 2/21.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has set The Net and Osamu Tezuka’s Metropolis for Blu-ray release on 2/21 as part of their Choice Collection MOD BD-R line of catalog titles. SRP is $26.99 each.

On the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray front today, we have a “buyer beware” warning for you: There’s a company selling a Bruce Lee 4K Ultra-HD Remastered Collection of films, including Fist of Fury and three other films. You can see it here at this link on Amazon. This is NOT an actual 4K Ultra HD release. It’s just a regular Blu-ray set that’s possibly been produced from 4K source material. So don’t get fooled.

In terms of actual 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray titles that we’ve learned are on the way, Warner is preparing Live by Night, while Sony is expecting to release Underworld: Blood Wars. You guys already know about Dario Argento’s Zombi: Dawn of the Dead, but Tobe Hooper’s The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is available on 4K UHD in Germany from Turbine Classics (Rough Trade Distribution), and a company called Alive has made Hugo Fregonese’s western Savage Pampas (1966 – aka Die Verfluchten der Pampas) available on the format too.

But here’s a REAL surprise: A Nordic video retailer ( has just listed Warner’s Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 for release on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray on 3/30. You can see the links to each by clicking on the titles. This suggests that Warner plans to continue releasing a lot more recent catalog titles on the format in the year ahead. These listings may disappear and have not yet appeared anywhere else that we know of, but there’s no reason to doubt that these titles (and probably the other Potter films too) aren’t in the works for 4K release by the studio. We’ll certainly watch for official announcements. [Editor’s Note: EZYdvd in Australia has now listed these 4 films for 4K UHD release as well. Street date of 3/29. Likely this will be timed to the BD/4K release of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Thanks to Bits reader Ben G. for the heads-up!]

Finally, we’ll leave you today with a look at the cover artwork for some of the Blu-ray titles we’ve mentioned above, with clickable pre-order links if available...

Donnie Darko: 4-Film Limited Collection (Blu-ray Disc)   The Wishmaster Collection (Blu-ray Disc)   5 Centimeters Per Second (Blu-ray Disc)

When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth (Blu-ray Disc)   Django Prepare a Coffin (Blu-ray Disc)   Jackie (Blu-ray Disc)

The Boyfriend (Blu-ray Disc)   Fire at Sea (Blu-ray Disc)   Return of Kung Fu: Trailers of Fury (Blu-ray Disc)

Back with more tomorrow. Stay tuned!

- Bill Hunt (@BillHuntBits)


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