NEWS ARCHIVE - 20th-26th NOVEMBER 2006


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23rd November 2006


The BFI will release The Innocents, Jack Clayton's 1961 adaptation of Henry James's The Turn of The Screw, on December the 18th.

The disc will offer the Cinemascope film in 2.35:1 ratio, showcasing Freddie Francis's acclaimed black and white cinematography.

The disc is loaded with bonus goodies:  a filmed introduction and commentary track by Professor Christopher Frayling; Jack Clayton's famous Oscar and BAFTA-winning 1955 short film The Bespoke Overcoat; a US trailer; stills gallery featuring original costume designs, publicity posters, press books and production photo's; and a twenty-page booklet featuring a Sight and Sound article, and film notes by The League of Gentlemen's Jeremy Dyson. The RRP is £19.99.

Here's a better look at the Predator Warrior Bust DVD set (announced below)...


The BFI IMAX theatre at Waterloo has announced its Christmas schedule, which includes the recent smash-hit Happy Feet (the CGI animated film which beat Casino Royale to the number one slot in the US the week it was released).

Happy Feet, about singing penguins, features the voices of Elijah Wood, Nicole Kidman, Hugh Jackman and Robin Williams.

The schedule also sees the return of two seasonal favourites, The Polar Express 3D and Santa Vs The Snowman 3D.

Info: The BFI IMAX is located at South Bank, London SE1. Nearest tube/mainline rail: Waterloo. For information on tickets and showtimes, please call 0870 787 2525 or visit the website at Tickets for Happy Feet and The Polar Express 3D will be priced at: Adults £12.00, Children (4-14) £8.00, Concessions £9.75. Tickets for Santa vs. the Snowman 3D will be: Adults £8.50, Children £5.00, Concessions £6.25. Children 3 and under are free.


Two imminent signings at the Shaftesbury Avenue branch of Forbidden Planet...

Noel Clarke (Mickey in Doctor Who) will be signing copies of the Doctor Who - Complete Second Series DVD set on Saturday the 25th of November, between 1 and 2pm.

Special Effects wizard Stan Winston will be signing copies of The Winston Effect - The Art and History of the Stan Winston Studio, on December the 6th, between 5 and 6pm.

To order signed copies contact Forbidden Planet's mail-order department: 020 7803 1900.

20th November 2006


Warner Home Video will release Richard Linklater's film adaptation of Philip K. Dick's classic science-fiction story of betrayal, fractured personalities and paranoia, A Scanner Darkly, on January the 22nd.

The film, which stars Keanu Reeves, Winona Ryder, Robert Downey Jr. and Woody Harrelson, utilises a state-of-the-art animation process - interpolated rotoscoping - to turn the live-action footage into something that resembles detailed cel animation.

The disc will feature a commentary by writer / director Linklater; One Summer in Austin - The Story of Filming A Scanner Darkly; The Weight of the Line - Animation Tales; and a theatrical trailer. The film will be in widescreen format, with Dolby Digital 5.1 audio (no other technical details were available).

The sleeve art shown here may not by the UK version (although it was provided by Warner's UK PR people). The RRP is thought to be £17.99.

Ron Fricke's 1985 directorial debut, the dazzling non-verbal documentary Chronos, is being released on DVD by Second Sight on February the 27th.

The film features extensive use of time-lapse photography (shot by Fricke, the director of photography on Godfrey Reggio's groundbreaking Koyaanisqatsi), and an atypically busy score by ambient music pioneer Michael Stearns.

The DVD will include a commentary track, and behind-the-scenes featurette. The RRP is £12.99.

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment will follow the release of their popular Alien Head DVD set with a limited edition Predator Warrior Bust set, on December the 11th.

The set includes the two-disc special edition versions of the two original Predator films, plus the "brand new" Alien Vs Predator Extended Cut which, according to the press release is "never-before seen" (apparently this is a different, gorier, cut than the Extended Version on the previously-available Alien Vs Predator disc).

The discs are housed in a life-sized (13.5 inch high) Predator bust created by Sideshow Collectibles. I wish I had a decent picture to share with you. Sadly, I don't. The RRP is £149.99.

Universal will release a box set featuring seven films Directed by Douglas Sirk on January the 15th.

The films are Has Anyone Seen My Gal, All I Desire, Magnificent Obsession, All That Heaven Allows, Written on the Wind, Tarnished Angels and Imitation of Life.

The set has an RRP of £69.99.

Fox is going to release the Alien Nation TV series on January the 7th. The six-disc set will contain the original TV movie, and all 21 episodes (but not the five sequel TV movies, oddly). The set will feature commentary by series creator Kenneth Johnson (probably only on the pilot movie - as per the US edition). A four-minute featurette that's on the R1 edition isn't mentioned in the press release, so presumably that's been dropped for the UK edition. The US edition is on three double-sided discs, so the UK version wins out there! The RRP is £39.99.

M. Night Shyamalan's dark fantasy Lady in the Water makes its belated DVD debut on January the 15th, courtesy of Warner Home Video.

The film, about a janitor who discovers that his apartment block's swimming pool is at the crossroads between two worlds, stars Sideways' Paul Giamatti and The Village's Bryce Dallas Howard.

The film will be presented in 2.35:1 widescreen format, with Dolby Digital 5.1 audio.

The disc will feature more than an hour of bonus material: Lady in the Water - A Bedtime Story; Reflections of Lady in the Water (Intro and the Script, The Characters, The Look, The Location, The Creatures, Post and Closing); auditions; a gag reel; and deleted scenes.

There seems to be some confusion among the etailers, perhaps because Warner Home Video don't quote an RRP in the press releases. Some of the etailers are indicating an RRP of more than £20, others are saying it's a two-disc set. Most agree that the RRP is £19.99, and that it's a single-disc edition.

Paramount Home Entertainment will release the movie version of former US Vice President Al Gore's alarming global warming documentary An Inconvenient Truth on DVD on December the 26th.

The DVD will come in recycled packaging - of course! - and will feature extensive bonus material, including two commentary tracks (one by director Davis Guggenheim, another by producers Laurie David, Laurence Bender, Scott Z. Burns and Lesley Chilcott). The disc will also feature: An Update With Former Vice President Al Gore; The Making of An Inconvenient Truth; and a music video by Melissa Etheridge, I Need To Wake Up.

The film will have "Dolby Digital Surround Sound". No other technical details were announced. The RRP is £19.99.

Dutch company Encore Filmed Entertainment has apparently released the next two films in their acclaimed Jean Rollin - The Collectors Edition (sic) series: the director's ethereal 1971 classic Le Frisson des Vampires (Shiver of the Vampires) and 1980's La Nuit des Traquée (The Night of the Hunted).

Le Frisson des Vampires will be presented in anamorphic 16:9 format, newly transferred and graded from the original negative. The audio has been digitally re-mastered. The Region 0 PAL disc offers French and English audio tracks. There are optional English subtitles.

The second disc offers a slideshow with more than a hundred rare photo's; commentary by Jean Rollin; deleted scenes; and an original trailer.

La Nuit des Traquée, which stars Brigitte Lahaie, has also been newly re-mastered from the original negatives, and boasts digitally re-mastered audio. The film is presented in French, with optional English subtitles.

The disc features a mouth-watering array of bonus goodies: interviews with Lahaie and production manager Lionell Wallmann; audio commentary by Rollin, and by Rollin and Lahaie; a picture gallery; trailer; and an interview with Alain Plumey (Museum of Erotica). The second disc will also feature the alternate scenes from the "hard" version...

La Nuit des Traquée's booklet will feature rare photo's, and an essay on the film.

Encore has changed the format of the collection slightly, to counter criticisms that they have been spreading the content across more discs than was probably necessary, and reflecting that in the price. The new sets will be two-disc digipacks, at a reduced RRP. Both sets will be limited to two thousand copies, and will still be accompanied by their lavish thirty-two page booklets. RRP for the sets is €29.95.

Avert thine eyes if easily offended...

Last week's Zeta Minor News can be viewed here.

Previous Zeta Minor News entries can viewed here.

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