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WHV Press Release: Gangsters Collection Volume 3


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#1 of 41 OFFLINE   Ronald Epstein

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Posted December 03 2007 - 03:48 AM

IT WOULD BE A CRIME TO MISS ‘EM!

WARNER BROS. PICTURES GANGSTERS COLLECTION VOLUME 3

Picture Snatcher ~ Lady Killer ~

Smart Money ~ Black Legion~

Mayor of Hell ~ Brother Orchid

All on DVD for the First Time March 25


Burbank, Calif. December 3, 2007 – On March 25, Warner Home Video (WHV) will be “packing heat” a third time with the DVD release of the Warner Bros. Pictures Gangsters Collection Volume 3. This latest group of crime genre classics, starring some of Hollywood’s top tough guys – James Cagney, Edward G. Robinson and Humphrey Bogart – features six new to DVD gangster flicks, three of which make their first home video appearance: Picture Snatcher, Lady Killer, Smart Money, Black Legion, Mayor of Hell and Brother Orchid. The films have been given brand new transfers from newly restored film elements, and also include bonus features such as rarely-seen Warner Bros. shorts, vintage newsreels and classic cartoons, plus original theatrical trailers. The films will be available as a collection for $59.92 SRP or as single titles for $19.97 SRP each.

Major Hollywood studios in the ‘30s and ‘40s were each known for their distinctive styles (MGM for its musicals; Universal for its horror films, etc.). Warner Bros. was best known for firmly establishing the genre of gangster films, which also contained socially conscious themes and a simple visual look (low key lighting and sparse sets).

About the Films

Picture Snatcher (1933)
James Cagney portrays Danny Kean, a gangster looking to reform himself -- after a stretch behind bars -- with a new career as a tabloid newspaper photographer. He’s also fallen for Patricia Nolan (Patricia Ellis), the daughter of the cop who put him away (Robert Emmett O'Connor). Dad is less than impressed with Kean’s new career and none too happy about his daughter’s budding relationship. Danny and his editor (Ralph Bellamy) may be selling papers, but is Danny able to sell Dad? Some of the photographs featured in the movie were recreated from sensational images of a 1928 electrocution that were printed in the New York Daily News.

Special Features:
· Vintage theatrical trailer: I Loved A Woman
· Classic WB short: Plane Crazy
· WB cartoon: Wake Up The Gypsy In Me

Lady Killer (1933)
In one of his more comedic efforts, Cagney plays Dan Quigley, a former con artist who goes to Hollywood to hide out and ends up becoming a star. Making it in show business may have its perks, but it also puts him in the spotlight and in jeopardy of being recognized by the thugs he ran away from. By turns, Lady Killer is a filmmaking spoof, a crime thriller and a character study. With Cagney’s vitality out front, it’s definitely greater than the sum of its parts. The likable cast includes Mae Clarke, his co-star from Public Enemy (part of the first Warner Bros. Gangster Collection) and the recipient of the famous grapefruit.

Special Features:
· Two exclusive WB shorts: The Camera Speaks and Kissing Time
· Original theatrical trailer
· WB cartoon: The Shanty Where Santy Claus Lives

Smart Money (1931)
Edward G. Robinson and James Cagney were teamed up for the only time in their careers in Smart Money. Robinson has the larger part of a small-town barber who fancies himself a big-time gambler. He travels to the Big City carrying ten grand from backers at home with his younger brother (Cagney), who comes along as his bodyguard. Unfortunately Robinson has a weakness for beautiful blondes, which means trouble with a capital T. Watch closely in the first reel for an unbilled appearance by Boris Karloff as a dope pusher. Smart Money was Oscar® nominated for Best Original Screenplay.

Special Features:
· Theatrical trailer: Other Men’s Women
· Two WB shorts: George Jessel and His Art Choir and The Smart Set-Up
· WB cartoon: Big Man From the North


Black Legion (1937)
Factory worker Frank Taylor (Humphrey Bogart in one of his early starring roles) believes that he has missed out on a deserved promotion when it is instead given to a Polish immigrant. Angry and looking for a scapegoat, he is an ideal mark for the Black Legion, an underground “Pro American” group that wants to get rid of immigrants and racial minorities through violent means. Frank joins, and with his new friends, he dons black robes and drives the Polish family from their home. His aim achieved, Frank gets his job, but soon the Legion begins to take up more of his time and money, and turns his character darker and darker. Co-starring Ann Sheridan, Black Legion was inspired by a real case and was nominated for an Academy Award® for Best Original Screenplay.

Special Features:
· Theatrical trailer: The Perfect Specimen
· Two WB shorts: Hi De Ho and Under Southern Stars
· Authentic newsreel
· WB short: Porky and Gabby


Mayor of Hell (1933)
Five members of a teen-age gang, including leader Jimmy Smith (Frank Darro), are sent to the State Reformatory, ruled with an iron fist by a callous warden. Soon, Patsy Gargan (James Cagney) - a former gangster - arrives, having been appointed Deputy Commissioner as a political favor. Gargan falls for activist nurse Dorothy (Madge Evans) and, inspired by her, takes over the administration to reform the reformatory and institute some formerly ignored basic Roosevelt-era principles, like humane treatment and democracy.

Special Features:
· Four exclusive theatrical trailers: The Kennel Murder Case, The Mayor of Hell, Crime School, and Hell’s Kitchen
· WB Short: The Audition
· WB Cartoon: The Organ Grinder


Brother Orchid (1940)
Edward G. Robinson and Humphrey Bogart made five films together and Brother Orchid is the only one in which neither is killed! In this gangster comedy, Little John Sarto (Robinson), returns from Europe where he was hoping to find some “class” and finds his old mob has been taken over by Jack Buck (Bogart). Barely escaping an attempt on his life by the new regime, Sarto takes refuge in the monastery of the “Little Brothers of the Flower,” pretending he’s interested in becoming a monk so that the Brothers will let him stay while he plots his revenge. However, the kindness of the monks gradually changes him and he resolves to turn over a new leaf and reject his violent past.

Special Features:
· Theatrical trailer: It All Came True
· WB short: Henry Busse and His Orchestra
· Two exclusive WB cartoons: Busy Bakers and Slap Happy Pappy

Warner Bros. Pictures Gangsters Collection Volume 3
Street Date: March 25, 2008
Catalog #: 1000027329
Collection $59.92 SRP; Individual titles $19.97 SRP
All Titles Not Rated; Black & White
Picture Snatcher
Catalog #: 1000035749
Run Time: 77 minutes
Lady Killer
Catalog #: 1000035748
Run Time: 76 minutes
Smart Money
Catalog #: 1000035746
Run Time: 81 minutes
Black Legion
Catalog #:1000035752
Run Time: 83 minutes
Mayor of Hell
Catalog #: 1000035745
Run Time: 90 minutes
Brother Orchid
Catalog #: 1000035744
Run Time: 88 minutes


Warner Home Video classic gangster titles currently available:

Warner Bros. Pictures Gangsters Collection Volume 1 (formerly Warner Bros. Pictures Gangsters Collection): The Public Enemy, White Heat, Angels with Dirty Faces, Little Caesar, The Petrified Forest and The Roaring Twenties.
Warner Bros. Pictures Gangsters Collection Volume 2 (formerly Warner Bros. Pictures Tough Guys Collection): Bullets or Ballots, Each Dawn I Die, ‘G’ Men, San Quentin, A Slight Case of Murder and City for Conquest


Additional Warner Home Video gangster titles available March 25.

Film Noir Classics Collection: Volumes 1 - 4
Scorsese: Special Edition Collection
Mean Streets: Special Edition
New Jack City: Special Edition
A Man Apart
Boiler Room
History of Violence
Knockaround Guys
Last Man Standing
Running Scared

Ronald J Epstein
Home Theater Forum co-owner

 

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#2 of 41 OFFLINE   John Hodson

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Posted December 03 2007 - 03:59 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronald Epstein
Warner Home Video classic gangster titles currently available:

Warner Bros. Pictures Gangsters Collection Volume 1 (formerly Warner Bros. Pictures Gangsters Collection): The Public Enemy, White Heat, Angels with Dirty Faces, Little Caesar, The Petrified Forest and The Roaring Twenties.
Warner Bros. Pictures Gangsters Collection Volume 2 (formerly Warner Bros. Pictures Tough Guys Collection): Bullets or Ballots, Each Dawn I Die, ‘G’ Men, San Quentin, A Slight Case of Murder and City for Conquest

[Edward G. Robinson]Nyaaaar! No more 'Tough Guys' see?[/Edward G. Robinson]

Or 'Mother of mercy! Is this the end of 'Tough Guys?'

Take your pick...
So many films, so little time...
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#3 of 41 OFFLINE   MarcoBiscotti

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Posted December 03 2007 - 06:23 AM

Can anyone please explain why the first Gangster Collection and Tough Guys Collection are now officially out of print and the Tough Guys set being referred to in the press release as (Gangster Coll. Vol. 2) - ??

#4 of 41 OFFLINE   Russell G

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Posted December 03 2007 - 10:07 AM

because they are rebranding set number 2, probably with new art to match this set?

Can't wait for these! I never saw any of them, not stopping me from grabbing this though, sounds like a lot of fun.

#5 of 41 OFFLINE   MarcoBiscotti

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Posted December 03 2007 - 09:16 PM

I still don't understand the purpose of that or why it would matter enough for WHV to go to the trouble of ceasing production on the current sets which have sold so well up to now. Wouldn't it have just been easier to rename this next box "Vol. 2" instead of putting all the older sets out of print. Would anyone have cared if the numbers didn't match up perfectly anyways? Is this really the only motivating factor -- because it seems from the perspective of the studio, to be a needless and possibly costly hassle that most other studios wouldn't bother with?

#6 of 41 OFFLINE   Simon Howson

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Posted December 03 2007 - 10:35 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarcoBiscotti
I still don't understand the purpose of that or why it would matter enough for WHV to go to the trouble of ceasing production on the current sets which have sold so well up to now.

Maybe they are going to re-issue them in slimline cases?

Maybe they are going to reissue them for the 85th Anniversary promotion?

#7 of 41 OFFLINE   Dale MA

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Posted December 04 2007 - 12:05 AM

They should have just called this set Vol. 2.

The reason the Tough Guy Collection was given that name was because not all of the titles where gangster pictures, so it makes little sense to rename that set Gangster Collection Vol. 2 at this point.

Not that any of this really matters, I'm just happy that we're getting another Gangster Collection.

#8 of 41 OFFLINE   Garysb

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Posted December 07 2007 - 02:09 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dale MA
They should have just called this set Vol. 2.

The reason the Tough Guy Collection was given that name was because not all of the titles where gangster pictures, so it makes little sense to rename that set Gangster Collection Vol. 2 at this point.

Not that any of this really matters, I'm just happy that we're getting another Gangster Collection.

Both Volumes 1 and 2 will be reissued in March with new packaging. They are up for preorder at the Warner Bros. Store.

http://whv.warnerbro....Name=Gangsters

#9 of 41 OFFLINE   Tim Tucker

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Posted December 07 2007 - 02:16 AM

Too bad the new artwork isn't nearly as good as what it's replacing.
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#10 of 41 OFFLINE   MarcoBiscotti

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Posted December 07 2007 - 06:20 AM

Yeah, should've stuck with the same formula... pointless to repackage and reissue when simply retitling 'Vol. 2' would've been just as effective. Who cares in the end though. I do prefer the original boxes though, they're some of the nicest packaged sets around.

#11 of 41 OFFLINE   oscar_merkx

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Posted December 10 2007 - 01:58 AM

It's great to know that Tough Guys is being renamed as I had forgotten about that one.

Fantastic bunch of films with Bogart and Cagney
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#12 of 41 OFFLINE   Deepak Shenoy

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Posted March 09 2008 - 10:57 AM

Two weeks to release date. Does anyone have early reviews of this set ? I would be curious about the packaging too.

-D

#13 of 41 OFFLINE   oscar_merkx

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Posted March 09 2008 - 10:59 AM

thanks for the reminder
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#14 of 41 OFFLINE   MarcoBiscotti

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Posted March 10 2008 - 12:31 AM

Can't wait for this too...

Any idea why Warners seemed to have abandoned their 'Night At The Movies' features though? Imo, it was the perfect complement and context for all the great extras, comedy shorts, cartoons, newsreels, etc. that they were including on these discs. I would've personally liked to see them continue with them.

#15 of 41 OFFLINE   Miguel M Santos

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Posted March 10 2008 - 02:12 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarcoBiscotti
Any idea why Warners seemed to have abandoned their 'Night At The Movies' features though?

I think there are some in the Bette Davis' discs.

#16 of 41 OFFLINE   Roger Rollins

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Posted March 10 2008 - 02:27 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarcoBiscotti
Can't wait for this too...

Any idea why Warners seemed to have abandoned their 'Night At The Movies' features though? Imo, it was the perfect complement and context for all the great extras, comedy shorts, cartoons, newsreels, etc. that they were including on these discs. I would've personally liked to see them continue with them.

They haven't abandoned WARNER NIGHT AT THE MOVIES at all....

I had the opportunity to preview some of the content in this collection recently, courtesy of a film-critic friend of mine who invited a group of folks over on Saturday night.

Here's the great news:

a) All the releases have WARNER NIGHT AT THE MOVIES, with at least one cartoon and one short (in some cases two) and lots of other cool items

b) We did not watch all six discs, but I got a chance to check out the quality on each, and the results are mind-boggling and impressive. All exceptionally clean and likely from original negatives

c) Each film comes in its own keepcase with gorgeous original vintage art

d) The two films we screened in full the other night were THE MAYOR OF HELL and BLACK LEGION. SUPERB in every sense of the word.

The only thing to whine and complain about?

I have to wait 2 more weeks before I can own this! Posted Image


I believe a lot of people on this forum will be extraordinarily pleased by what this amazing set has to offer.

This is another "Gold standard" release from the Brothers Warner! Posted Image

#17 of 41 OFFLINE   oscar_merkx

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Posted March 10 2008 - 03:04 AM

Thanks Roger for keeping us informed.

Can't wait
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#18 of 41 OFFLINE   MarcoBiscotti

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Posted March 10 2008 - 03:42 AM

Sounds great, can't wait!!!

#19 of 41 OFFLINE   Deepak Shenoy

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Posted March 10 2008 - 12:00 PM

I also loved the short featurettes they had on each disc in the first two box sets but I am sure this set will be well worth the money even without them. Separate keepcases with original poster-art was exactly what I was hoping for and so I can go ahead and pre-order this set now.

Thanks Roger for the good news on the set.

-D

#20 of 41 OFFLINE   Michelle*B

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Posted March 14 2008 - 06:43 PM

This review of The Mayor of Hell from TCM.com mentions that it has a commentary. It's possible that the other films in the set might have commentaries.

The Mayor of Hell comes with a full 'Warner's Night at the Movies' selection of extras that includes a 1933 newsreel excerpt (not too exciting), a musical short subject (The Audition), a Merrie Melodies cartoon (The Organ Grinder) and various trailers. Author Greg Mank provides a good, well-researched commentary. He knows the film's entire shooting schedule as well as the backgrounds of all the actors. Five-foot three-inch Frankie Darrow played many a jockey and bellboy, and also was inside the Robby the Robot suit in Forbidden Planet. Sidney Miller is the father of actor Barry Miller and Madge Evans was married to playwright Sidney Kingsley, who, appropriately, wrote the original play of Dead End. Allen "Farina" Hoskins plays Smoke, the black member of Darrow's street gang.


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