3rd December 2004

Universal Pictures will release Steven Spielberg's The Terminal as a Two-Disc Special Edition DVD on January 31st.

The Tom Hanks film, about a man who finds himself stranded in a New York airport when a civil war in his home country prevents his return, will be presented with a choice of DTS or Dolby Digital 5.1 audio. Extra features include Booking The Flight - The Script and the Story (introduction, 8m); Waiting For The Flight (Building The Set (12m) / The Costumes); Boarding - The People of The Terminal (interviews with Tom Hanks, Catherine Zeta Jones, Stanley Tucci and other leading cast members); The Take Off - Making The Terminal (cast and crew interviews, 17m); In Flight Service (two featurettes including Kumar Pallana "performing his famous plate number", and one about John Williams' score, 5m); Landing - Airport Stories (cast and crew's airport nightmare stories, 6m); Making of... (HBO behind-the-scenes); Trailers; Cast and Crew Biogs and Photo' Gallery. (Durations from the BBFC). The BBFC has also cleared a featurette titled Tom Hanks is Viktor (32m), which may be the Boarding featurette listed above. RRP will be £19.99.

1st December 2004

Granada Ventures have confirmed that they'll be using re-mastered prints for their forthcoming Sherlock Holmes DVDs (see yesterday's news). I'm also told that two episodes will be in 16:9 format. I have asked for more information, but suspect that this is all we're likely to get for the time being.

George Takei will be promoting the release of the third season of Star Trek - The Original Series by appearing on the LK Today segment of TV AM on Thursday morning (from 8.35am). Afterwards, at 9.30am, he'll be participating in an on-line video chat. There's more information and a chance to pre-register any question you might have here (if you can get the link to work - I couldn't!)

29th November 2004

Granada Ventures is re-issuing the Jeremy Brett Sherlock Holmes series on February the 21st. This is potentially a very interesting development, but one that might have fans of the series tearing out their hair, as they face the prospect of double-dipping...

Granada Ventures is releasing the series on three digistack packs: Sherlock Holmes: The Adventures and The Return (nine discs), Sherlock Holmes: The Casebook and The Memoirs (seven discs) and Sherlock Holmes: The Complete Collection (sixteen discs). The two season sets have an RRP of £49.99. The Complete Collection is £99.99.

Now, it won't have escaped your attention that the entire series was released not too long ago (in the middle of last year), by VCI's Cinema Club. The transfer on those discs wasn't terribly good (see the Zeta Minor review). Since then many - if not all - of the episodes have been re-mastered (for the the series of BBC2 repeats, and for the recent Region 1 DVD releases), so it's to be hoped that the new discs will use the new transfers, and will be a substantial improvement.

Unfortunately, there's no mention of any re-mastering on the press release. Worryingly the press release says that they will be in 16:9 anamorphic format, but I expect that's another PR company cock-up. If Granada Ventures continues the generally-excellent standards set by Carlton (with  series like UFO), then the new sets could be very nice indeed (especially if they're able to include the commentary tracks that are on the recent Region 1 releases!) The discs will apparently have English HoH subtitles (if Granada Ventures continues to follow Carlton's template, all their releases will have HoH subtitles).

The sets will break down thus:

The Adventures and The Return

A Scandal in Bohemia, The Dancing Men, The Naval Treaty, The Solitary Cyclist, The Crooked Man, The Speckled Band, The Blue Carbuncle, The Copper Beeches, The Greek Interpreter, The Norwood Builder, The Resident Patient, The Red-Headed League, The Final Problem, The Empty House, The Priory School, The Second Stain, The Musgrave Ritual, The Abby Grange, The Man With The Twisted Lip, The Six Napoleons, The Sign of Four, The Devil's Foot, Silver Blaze, Wisteria Lodge, The Bruce Partington Plans and The Hound of the Baskervilles.

The Casebook and The Memoirs

The Disappearance of Lady Frances Carfax, The Problem of Thor Bridge, Shoscombe Old Place, The Boscombe Valley Mystery, The Illustrious Client, The Creeping Man, The Master Blackmailer, The Last Vampyre, The Eligible Bachelor, The Three Gables, The Dying Detective, The Golden Pince Nez, The Red Circle, The Mazarin Stone and The Cardboard Box.

More news on the new Sherlock Holmes discs as I get it...

There are three new competitions today, where you could win a copy of Twentieth Century Fox's I, Robot DVD (a two-disc edition that knocks the Region 1 release into a cocked hat - whatever that is); Warner Home Video's Ultimate Oliver Stone Collection box set (which features ten movies from one of my favourite filmmakers, as well as a bunch of rare bonus material), or a copy of the third Star Trek - The Original Series box set (which makes good Paramount's promise to release the series before the end of the year - next up: Enterprise!) Please click on the banners, above, or here for the I, Robot competition; here for the Oliver Stone Collection competition, or here for the Star Trek competition.

If you've registered more than ten posts at Roobarb's DVD Forum, you're entitled to vote in the 2004 Roobarb Awards, for your favourite DVDs of the year. There's only a couple of weeks left before submissions close, so vote now!

Here's the sleeve artwork for Studio Canal's The Devil-Ship Pirates DVD (apparently the film's now called Devilship Pirates). The PR company has updated the details for the release, but are still saying that it's a 4:3 release, which is alarming.

Special thanks to Ceri, who, with Sean's help, has contributed updates to the Incoming and Offers pages, even though he's moved house this week! Adding to the workload this week have been lots of behind-the-scenes changes, so Ceri's been especially busy. So, here's....


Hello everyone! I’m back this week after Sean’s first update last week (welcome to the team, mate!). As ever there’s the usual sort of gubbins taking place in the update to Incoming, but there are some interesting changes to the Offers page. More on that later!

Let’s begin with the films this week…

Universal’s release of the surprisingly good sequel to The Bourne Identity, The Bourne Supremacy will have the following special features: On the Move with Jason Bourne; Bourne to be Wild: Fight Training; Crash Cam: Racing Through the Streets of Moscow; deleted scenes; Matching Identities: Casting; Keeping It Real; Blowing Things Up; The Go-Mobile Revs Up the Action; Scoring with John Powell and Anatomy of a Scene: The Explosive Bridge Chase Scene. There’ll also be a commentary track by director Paul Greengrass. The release has an RRP of £19.99. Universal will also be releasing a double-pack of this film with it’s predecessor, The Bourne Identity (the Matt Damon version, of course!), for an RRP of £27.99. Both are due on January the 24th.

James Wan’s acclaimed horror film Saw has appeared for the 21st of February from Entertainment in Video. There aren’t any special features listed as yet, but it has an RRP of £19.99.

Spartan, David Mamet’s thriller from earlier in the year, is also being listed for the 21st of February. Again, there are no special features listed (the US disc has a commentary by star Val Kilmer and a trailer), but Warner Home Video’s release has an RRP of £15.99.

Dreamworks are prepping a Special Edition reissue of Meet the Parents for January the 17th, no doubt hoping to piggy-back sales from the sequel, Meet the Fockers, which is due in cinemas at the around the same time. Listed extras include: outtakes; deleted scenes; Silly Cat Tricks and The Truth About Lying. Hmm, doesn’t sound very special! As yet it hasn’t got an RRP attached to it.

The weak Cole Porter biopic, De-Lovely, has appeared for March the 7th from MGM. Its RRP is £15.99. Did you know that it was going to be called Just One of Those Things at one point during production?

Pathé have the Bollywood-style crossover, Bride and Prejudice, lined up for the 7th of February at £15.99.

I continue my trend of name-checking a title in a review and then it suddenly appears on the retailers a week or so later! This time is the Nicole Kidman Australian kid’s classic BMX Bandits, from 1983. Contender are preparing a release for February the 7th with an RRP of £9.99.

Tartan have Jim Jarmusch’s collection of vignettes revolving around Coffee and Cigarettes due on the 21st of February: a work he originally began in 1986, with different vignettes filmed between then and the final release last year. Guest cameos include Steve Buscemi, Iggy Pop, Tom Waits, Cate Blanchett, Jack and Meg White (The White Stripes), Alfred Molina, Steve Coogan, GZA (Wu-Tang-Clan) and Bill Murray. The release has an RRP of £19.99.

Jenniffer Abbott and Mark Achbar’s documentary, The Corporation, is being turned into a two-disc DVD edition by Metrodome for March the 7th. The documentary looks in detail at the detremental effect corporate greed has on modern life, taking in third world sweat-shops to the patenting of new life-forms. No word on the special features yet, but it has an RRP of £19.99.

Right, lets move onto the TV releases…

Thanks to Jason B for posting on Roobarb’s DVD Forum that the BBC Shop have put up details of the special features for Doctor Who story The Mind Robber, which is due on March the 7th. These include: a commentary with regular actors Wendy Padbury and Frazer Hines, guest cast member Hamish Wilson (who stood in for Hines when he was taken ill, thanks to some clever re-writing) and director David Maloney; a documentary, The Fact of Fiction (34’55”), in which actors and production team recall working on the story; a look at the career of Frazer Hines, Highlander (22’28”), who reminisces on his career in Doctor Who and beyond; an Easter Egg; a photo gallery and production notes. BBC Worldwide’s release has an RRP of £19.99.

Incidentally, the ten-minute Basil Brush clip that was part of the package of extras destined for the Doctor Who – Horror of Fang Rock DVD has been dropped, for space reasons. The clip, a sketch set in the Himalayas, which features two Doctor Who Yeti costumes, will probably be included on another disc before too long. The sleeve art for the Horror of Fang Rock disc is shown here.

There are a couple of new titles from Acorn being listed…

Series one of Pie in the Sky, Richard Griffiths’ BBC quirky 1994 ten-episode detective series, has appeared for the 7th of February. The set will be released in two parts, and probably as a complete box set, too, though it’s not appeared as yet!

Joining Pie in the Sky on this date is the BBC’s 1971 adaptation of Tom Brown’s Schooldays. This starred the superb Iain Cuthbertson along with Gerald Flood (a formidable combination!) Acorn’s release has an RRP of £24.99.

Carlton has a Peter Cook and Dudley Moore – The Best of Goodbye Again listed for the 7th of February as well. Presumably a compilation of the duo’s 1968 series of specials for ATV. So, far an RRP isn’t showing.

Special features have appeared for Eureka’s 2 Point 4 Children – The Complete Series 1 on Choices Direct. These include A Tribute to Gary Olsen and Photo Gallery. The release is due on January the 24th and an RRP of £16.99.

Due out today are three releases from Universal of cartoon series featuring characters from Viz: Oh Lordy! It's The The Fat Slags (featuring the voice of Kathy Burke), Roger Mellie The Man On The Telly / Billy The Fish (featuring Peter Cook and Harry Enfield respectively) and Sid The Sexist (featuring Bob Mortimer). The three have RRPs of £15.99 each.

Universal has an box set of Alfred Hitchcock Presents – Season 1 listed for February the 21st. This is very good news for the director’s UK fans, who lost out when the handful of episodes released as bonus features on the US DVD movie box sets were dropped from the UK versions. So far there’s no RRP listed for it.

Finally, for the changes to Incoming, is news that the two individual volumes of Astro Boy have been withdrawn and replaced with Volumes 1 & 2 collection. The collection has the same price as the individual volumes - £12.99 – and the same date – 31st of January. [For what it's worth, Columbia Tristar's trade website still has it listed as two separate releases: the first will have fifty twenty-two minute cartoons on it. JK]

Right, now on to the interesting changes to the Offers page…!

We’ve set-up new affiliations with some of the retailers. The retailers in question are: 101cd, Benson’s World, Choices Direct, HMV, Play, Sendit and WH Smith. As you can see Benson’s World has made a return – after the migration to their new website their pricing has begun to settle down a bit, hence their return to the Offers page. Buying from these retailers will help support Zeta Minor, and it won’t cost you a penny extra! We’ve dropped the affiliation with Rowdys – it wasn’t working out for either party (let’s just say that we’ll keep saving for that Mars Bar!)

So, what has been added to the page this week then?

Amazon have the Sliders – Season 1 & 2 box set available on pre-order for £26.24, with the RRP listed at the lower price of £34.99 and not £39.99 as before. We’ll see if this is an error on Amazon’s part or a revision of the RRP. The Day of the Triffids is now up on £9.74; Hell Drivers is being offered at £7.25; the Amazon exclusive limited edition I, Robot Collectors Tin is at £17.99; the Live Aid box set is at £27.99

What has the return of Benson’s World brought us? Well, the limited collector’s edition of Blake's Seven - Series 2 is at £35.95 (this is available cheaper some of the other retailers, as I’ll highlight in a minute, but I list it here for those of you like taking advantage of the speedier delivery times offered by Benson’s World). Thanks to Sean for posting that the eighteen-disc Carry On box set is at £79.99. Benson’s World’s unbeatable pricing for certain DD Video titles has returned: Oh Brother! is at £12.99 and Fall of Eagles, Secret Army – Series 3 and Survivors – Series 2 are all £34.95.

Choices Direct has their exclusive release of Network’s George and the Dragon - The Complete Series at £42.29 – thanks to Sean for letting us know that Choices are now shipping this! Thanks also go to Sean for informing us that the Airplane / Airplane 2: Collector's Edition is available for £7.49; The Chronicles of Riddick is at £12.99 (£7.00 off!); the Gone With The Wind - Special Edition is at £17.99; Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is at £13.99 (£11.00 off!); the Hellboy - Special Edition is at £15.99; the I, Robot - Special Edition at £13.99 (£11.00 off!); the Memento - Special Edition at £17.99; Monk - Season 1 at £20.99; Quantum Leap - Season 1 at £17.99; the complete Rosemary & Thyme - Series 2 at £29.99; Shrek 2 at £12.99 (£10.00 off!); The Thorn Birds at £12.99 (£7.00 off!); Troy at £13.99 (£9.00 off!); The Village at £13.99 and the new The X-Files box sets at £23.99 each. Lots of good stuff there!

Play has Star Trek - Generations - Special Edition at £15.99; Memento - Special Edition at £17.99; Hellboy - Special Edition at £15.99; The 4400 - Season 1 at £17.99; Doctor Who and the Daleks / Daleks - Invasion Earth 2150AD at £10.99 (£14.00 off) and The Right Spectacle - The Very Best of Elvis Costello at £13.99 (£4.00 off). Thanks to Sean for the latter two!

For fans of BBC comedy, SelectDvds has Porridge – Series 1, 2 and 3 at £8.56 each.

Finally, HMV has various DVD promotions on at the moment, as they gear up for Christmas.

And that’s it from me, more of the same next week!

Previous Zeta Minor News entries can viewed here.




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