My Two Cents

Rogue One official, plus Passengers, Hell in the Pacific, Lion date change, Twilight’s March slate & MUCH more

February 22, 2017 - 1:37 pm   |   by
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Afternoon, folks! We’ve got some great stuff for you here at The Bits today…

First up, Tim has turned in a review of Shout! Factory’s Mystery Science Theater 3000: Volume IV, which includes the episodes Space Mutiny, Overdrawn at the Memory Back, Girl in Gold Boots, and Hamlet. The disc is now available, so do give it a look.

Meanwhile, we have a new MOS DEF column from Mark A. Altman as well today, in which he takes a look back at his favorite Blu-ray releases of 2016. We’ll have more from Mark later this week too. Enjoy!

In announcement news today, the BIG news is that Disney and Lucasfilm have just officially set Rogue One: A Star Wars Story for Blu-ray Combo, DVD, and On Demand release on 4/4, with a Digital HD release set for 3/24. There’s no word yet of a 4K version, but it appears that Target and Best Buy will have retail-exclusive Blu-ray 3D versions on 4/4 (per Star Wars.com). The Target package appears to match the Star Wars: The Force Awakens 3D Collector’s Edition. The Best Buy package comes in a Steelbook. Walmart will also have exclusive packaging. Extras on the Blu-rays will include 11 behind-the-scenes featurettes (A Rogue Idea, Jyn: The Rebel, Cassian: The Spy, K-2SO: The Droid, Baze & Chirrut: Guardians of the Whills, Bodhi & Saw: The Pilot & The Revolutionary, The Empire, Visions of Hope: The Look of Rogue One, The Princess & The Governor, Epilogue: The Story Continues, and Rogue Connections). Note that the lack of deleted scenes – and we know there are many – or audio commentary suggests that a more elaborate Collector’s Edition BD release is coming later this year. You can see the cover artwork at the left and below. [Read on here…]

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Here’s a look at the retail exclusive versions (links will be added to pre-order when they go live)...

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (Target exclusive Blu-ray)

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (Best Buy exclusive Blu-ray)

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (Walmart exclusive Blu-ray)

Meanwhile, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has officially set Passengers for Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray on 3/14, with the Digital HD release due on 3/7. The 4K Ultra HD release will include 4K, Blu-ray 3D, and regular Blu-ray in the same package. Extras on all versions will include Outtakes from the Set, 3 featurettes (Casting the Passengers, Creating the Avalon, and On Set with Chris Pratt), and an interactive feature called Book Your Passage (with the fictional Homestead Company from the film). To this, the Blu-ray and Digital HD will add deleted scenes, a Passengers VR Experience First Look, and the Space on Screen: The Visual Effects of Passengers featurette. And Bits reader Paul H. has informed us (Thanks Paul!) that Target will have a retail-exclusive version with the a Bonus DVD featuring A Journey to the Stars: The Making of Passengers. Best Buy will also have retail-exclusive Steelbook packaging. You can see the wide release cover artwork below. 

Sony has also announced the Sony Pictures Classic title Tony Erdmann, directed by Maren Ade. Look for that on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital HD on 4/11.

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment has now officially set Hidden Figures for Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release on 4/11.

Lionsgate has officially set Patriot’s Day for Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release on 3/28.

Anchor Bay Entertainment and The Weinstein Company have adjusted the Blu-ray, DVD, and On Demand street date for Lion to 4/11, with a Digital HD release due on 3/28 (moved from 3/21 and 3/7, respectively). Adjust your plans accordingly.

Twilight Time has announced their March Blu-ray slate, which is set to be released on 3/14 (SRP $29.95 each) and be available for pre-order on the Twilight website and Screen Archives Entertainment on 3/1 (at 1 PM Pacific). The titles include Charles Shyer’s Baby Boom (1987 – with an isolated music and effects track, commentary by film historians Julie Kirgo and Nick Redman, and the trailer), David Swift’s How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying (1967 – with an isolated music track with some effects, 2 featurettes – This Book Is All That You Need: Robert Morse on J. Pierrepont Finch and A Secretary Is Not a Toy: Michele Lee on Rosemary Pilkington – and the trailer), Carol Reed’s Our Man in Havana (1959 – with an isolated music and effects track and the trailer), and Mark Robson’s Peyton Place (1957 – with audio commentary by filmmaker/historian Willard Carroll, a second audio commentary with actors Terry Moore and Russ Tamblyn, 3 featurettes – On Location in Peyton Place with Willard Carroll, AMC Backstory: Peyton Place, and Fox Movietone Newsreels – and trailers).

Here’s something cool: Kino Lorber has revealed that John Boorman’s Hell in the Pacific (1968) is coming soon to Blu-ray and DVD. This classic film stars Lee Marvin and Toshiro Mifune, with cinematography by Conrad Hall, and music by Lalo Schifrin. Best of all, we’ve learned that the disc will include the film’s rare alternate ending.

Also today, Flicker Alley and Blackhawk Films have just announced the 5/9 Blu-ray and DVD release of Early Women Filmmakers: An International Anthology (SRP $69.95, but just $49.95 if you pre-order it from their website directly). From the official press release: “International in scope, this groundbreaking collection features over 10 hours of material, comprised of 25 films spanning 1902-1943, including many rare titles not widely available until now, from shorts to feature films, live-action to animation, commercial narratives to experimental works. Directors include Alice Guy Blaché, Lois Weber, Mabel Normand, Madeline Brandeis, Germaine Dulac, Olga Preobrazhenskaia, Marie-Louise Iribe, Lotte Reiniger, Claire Parker, Mrs. Wallace Reid (Dorothy Davenport), Leni Riefenstahl, Mary Ellen Bute, Dorothy Arzner, and Maya Deren.” Extras will include a booklet with essay and an audio commentary.

FUNimation has now officially confirmed that the original Japanese anime, Speed Racer: The Complete Series, will arrive on Blu-ray and DVD on 5/30 (SRP $29.98 and $24.98). The Blu-ray will include all 52 original episodes on 5 discs (6 discs in the DVD set), with the original 1960s English dubbed audio, and English subtitles (for the hearing impaired). Many have asked why the set doesn’t also include the original Japanese version, Mach GoGoGo, on the same disc. The reason (as we’ve noted before) is that the English version was heavily edited (much footage was cut for U.S. broadcast) so it’s not simply a matter of including the alternate Japanese audio tracks. However, FUNimation has confirmed that the uncut Mach GoGoGo (with the original Japanese audio and English subtitle translation) will be released separately later in 2017, and it’s likely there will also be an elaborate box set that includes both in the same package. Frankly, we’re excited for both.

PBS Distribution will release Fortitude: Season 2 on Blu-ray and DVD on 6/13.

Shout! Factory has set When Calls the Heart: The Heart of Faith for DVD release on 3/21, as seen on The Hallmark Channel.

And Warner Bros and DC have set Teen Titans: The Judas Contract Deluxe Edition for Blu-ray and DVD release on 4/18.

We’ll leave you with a look at some new cover artwork (including art for a few of the titles mentioned above – click to pre-order on Amazon if available)...

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (Blu-ray Disc) Passengers (Blu-ray Disc) Passengers (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray)

Stay tuned...

- Bill Hunt

 

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