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WHV Press Release: King Kong (1933) (Blu-ray)


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#1 of 49 OFFLINE   Ronald Epstein

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Posted May 31 2010 - 01:08 AM

Posted Image

One of the Greatest Adventures of All Time Makes Its

Long-Awaited Blu-ray™ Debut


KING KONG (1933)

Newly Remastered and Loaded with Extras

Presented in a Visually Stunning Blu-ray Book


Burbank, Calif. May 31, 2010 – On September 28, 2010, the original 1933 RKO classic King Kong makes its long awaited debut on Blu-ray Disc™. Presented by Warner Home Video, the newly remastered King Kong features extensive bonus content, including a collectible Blu-ray Book written by renowned film historian Rudy Behlmer; a feature length documentary on Kong creator Merian C. Cooper, directed by acclaimed filmmakers Kevin Brownlow and Christopher Bird; commentary by Ray Harryhausen and Ken Ralston with Merian C. Cooper and Fay Wray; and a seven-part documentary that delves deeply into just about every aspect of the making of the film. Orders are due August 24, 2010 (SRP $34.99).

With 32 pages of rare photography and trivia, the captivating Blu-ray Book, written by Rudy Behlmer, centers around the vision of director, Merian C. Cooper and his larger than life persona that brought the story of King Kong to the screen. A prolific film researcher and historian, Behlmer personally interviewed Cooper and has written numerous books and contributed to a wide variety of documentaries, videos, DVDs and laser discs about Hollywood's Golden Age.


In this very special Blu-ray release, the newly remastered film is presented in its 1933 entirety and includes scenes that were originally considered too shocking for the 1938-1956 re-releases. With equal parts adventure, horror and old-fashioned romance, King Kong is a milestone of movie-making that has endured for more than seven decades. Named as one of the “100 Best Films of All Time” by Time MagazineKing Kongpremiered in New York City in 1933. The film was an instant success, breaking box-office records to become one of the top moneymakers of the 1930s.



King Kong’s state-of-the-art visual effects, entertaining story and touching conclusion captivated audiences and started a worldwide love affair with the giant ape. The film has also been included in seven of the American Film Institute’s Top 100 lists, including the “100 Years...100 Movies” list.


A film ahead of its time, King Kong defied the technological limitations of the 1930s. Special effects pioneer Willis O’Brien’s revolutionary stop-motion animation was not only technically brilliant but also highly imaginative and continues to impress even in today’s era of computer-generated wizardry. Directed and produced by Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack, with a rousing score by Max Steiner (who also scored Gone with the Wind), King Kong stars Robert Armstrong, Bruce Cabot and Fay Wray, whose memorable performance as damsel in distress Ann Darrow cemented her place in pop culture and earned her the nickname “The Queen of Scream.”


In addition to its Blu-ray debut, King Kong is available On Demand from cable and satellite providers, and for permanent download and digital rental through iTunes, Amazon Video On Demand, PlayStation Store and Xbox LIVE Zune Video Marketplace.


Film Synopsis


King Kong (1933)

Robert Armstrong stars as movie producer Carl Denham who travels to a mysterious, uncharted island in search of material for his next film. Also aboard are unemployed actress Ann Darrow (Fay Wray) and adventurer Jack Driscoll (Bruce Cabot). Once the crew reaches Skull Island they discover it is home to prehistoric beasts including Kong, a giant ape who becomes obsessed with the crew’s blonde starlet. King Kong teems with memorable moments, from the audience’s first glance at the giant ape to his last stand atop the Empire State Building.


Special Features:

    [*] Commentary by Ray Harryhausen and Ken Ralston, with Merian C. Cooper and Fay Wray [*] Merian C. Cooper Movies Trailer Gallery [*] I’m King Kong! The Exploits of Merian C. Cooper (2005 documentary)  [*] RKO Production 601: The Making of Kong, Eighth Wonder of the World

a.       The Origins of “King Kong”

b.       Willis O’Brien and “Creation”

c.       Cameras Roll on Kong, The Eighth Wonder

d.       A Milestone in Visual Effects

e.       Passion, Sound and Fury

f.        The Mystery of the Lost Spider Pit Sequence

g.       King Kong’s Legacy

    [*] Creation Test Footage with Commentary by Ray Harryhausen

Note: All enhanced content listed above is subject to change.


Consumer Demand for Blu-ray Continues to Surge


According to DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group, with input from all major motion picture studios, Blu-ray software continued to see significant growth in the first quarter of 2010, with sell-through up 61 percent and rental up 36 percent, compared to the same period last year. The DEG also announced that Blu-ray hardware sales experienced remarkable growth, with set-tops up an astounding 125 percent versus first quarter 2009, indicating a strong consumer demand for Blu-ray.



King Kong (1933)

Blu-ray Disc™

Rating: NR

Aspect Ratio: 1:37: 1

Black & White

Subtitles: English, French and Spanish (Feature Film Only)

Street Date: September 28, 2010

FERT #: 1000088610

UPC #: 883929055609

$34.99 SRP


 

Ronald J Epstein
Home Theater Forum co-owner

 

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#2 of 49 ONLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted May 31 2010 - 01:13 AM

We've been expecting this BRD announcement for a Fall release. 





Crawdaddy


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Blu-ray Preorder Listing

 


#3 of 49 OFFLINE   Garysb

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Posted May 31 2010 - 02:29 AM

I'll be getting it. There doesn't appear to be any new video extra content from the last DVD special edition.



#4 of 49 OFFLINE   Steve Christou

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Posted May 31 2010 - 05:14 AM

"Did you ever hear of... Kong?"


Still the greatest monster movie of them all. I'll buy it on blu.


Dave hören... auf, wille stoppen sie Dave... stoppen sie Dave... Mein gehirn geht... Ich bin gefühl es... Ich bin gefühl es... Ich bin ängstlich Dave... Guter Nachmittag. Ich bin ein HAL 9000 computer. Ich wurde funktionsfähig am HAL-Betrieb in Urbana, Illinois auf January 12 1992.


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#5 of 49 OFFLINE   Brandon Conway

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Posted May 31 2010 - 10:31 AM

Can't wait!


"And now the reprimand, from an American critic. He reproaches me for using film as a sacred & lasting medium, like a painting or a book. He does not believe that filmmaking is an inferior art, but he believes, and quite rightly, that a reel goes quickly, that the public are looking above all for relaxation, that film is fragile and that it is pretentious to express the power of one's soul by such ephemeral and delicate means, that Charlie Chaplin's or Buster Keaton's first films can only be seen on very rare and badly spoiled prints. I add that the cinema is making daily progress and that eventually films that we consider marvelous today will soon be forgotten because of new dimensions & colour. This is true. But for 4 weeks this film [The Blood of a Poet] has been shown to audiences that have been so attentive, so eager & so warm, that I wonder after all there is not an anonymous public who are looking for more than relaxation in the cinema." - Jean Cocteau, 1932


#6 of 49 OFFLINE   Joe Fisher

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Posted May 31 2010 - 10:33 AM

SOLD!!! /img/vbsmilies/htf/rock.gif



#7 of 49 OFFLINE   Rick Thompson

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Posted May 31 2010 - 12:51 PM

I'm sold too -- as long as I can get it without the "captivating Blu-ray book" and whatever other landfill bait a la "Gone With the Wind" and "Casablanca." I was able to get those without the junk, and hope I can get "King Kong" that way also. Otherwise, no sale.



#8 of 49 OFFLINE   PaulaJ

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Posted May 31 2010 - 03:30 PM

I saw the newly remastered King Kong digitally projected at Graumann's Chinese during the TCM Classic Film Festival this past April, and it was a WOW! all the way.  You all have a treat in store.  I can't wait to see this again in Blu-ray though it probably won't be quite the same as seeing it on that King Kong-sized screen. :)


PaulaJ

#9 of 49 OFFLINE   Douglas Monce

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Posted May 31 2010 - 03:41 PM



Originally Posted by Rick Thompson 

I'm sold too -- as long as I can get it without the "captivating Blu-ray book" and whatever other landfill bait a la "Gone With the Wind" and "Casablanca." I was able to get those without the junk, and hope I can get "King Kong" that way also. Otherwise, no sale.


I believe the blu-ray book is the same as the way North by Northwest, Poltergeist and How The West Was Won were released. A hard bound book with the blu-ray holder on the inside back cover. I actually really like these releases.


Doug


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Posted May 31 2010 - 05:59 PM

Sold!



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Posted June 01 2010 - 01:51 PM

I like how Kong is so big that he spills into the Blu-Ray logo strip at the top!/img/vbsmilies/htf/cool.gif



#12 of 49 OFFLINE   JohnMor

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Posted June 01 2010 - 02:28 PM

Sold!



#13 of 49 OFFLINE   SilverWook

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Posted June 01 2010 - 03:40 PM

Would have been nice if they included "Son of Kong", as I doubt we'll ever see it released separately on Blu.



#14 of 49 OFFLINE   John Morgan

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Posted June 02 2010 - 01:24 AM



Originally Posted by SilverWook 

Would have been nice if they included "Son of Kong", as I doubt we'll ever see it released separately on Blu.


I would have paid double the retail price for an edition with SON OF KONG and MIGHTY JOE YOUNG in Blu Ray as added value.


#15 of 49 OFFLINE   PaulDA

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Posted June 02 2010 - 01:40 AM



Originally Posted by Douglas Monce 




I believe the blu-ray book is the same as the way North by Northwest, Poltergeist and How The West Was Won were released. A hard bound book with the blu-ray holder on the inside back cover. I actually really like these releases.


Doug

Ditto.


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#16 of 49 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted June 02 2010 - 02:34 AM

Another ditto, and I too would have paid for a release containing all three films.  Missed opportunity?



#17 of 49 OFFLINE   Brandon Conway

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Posted June 02 2010 - 04:41 AM



Originally Posted by Chas in CT 

Another ditto, and I too would have paid for a release containing all three films.  Missed opportunity?


Eh, the main draw is the original film. I'm sure they have the DVD sales figures to back this up.


"And now the reprimand, from an American critic. He reproaches me for using film as a sacred & lasting medium, like a painting or a book. He does not believe that filmmaking is an inferior art, but he believes, and quite rightly, that a reel goes quickly, that the public are looking above all for relaxation, that film is fragile and that it is pretentious to express the power of one's soul by such ephemeral and delicate means, that Charlie Chaplin's or Buster Keaton's first films can only be seen on very rare and badly spoiled prints. I add that the cinema is making daily progress and that eventually films that we consider marvelous today will soon be forgotten because of new dimensions & colour. This is true. But for 4 weeks this film [The Blood of a Poet] has been shown to audiences that have been so attentive, so eager & so warm, that I wonder after all there is not an anonymous public who are looking for more than relaxation in the cinema." - Jean Cocteau, 1932


#18 of 49 ONLINE   smithb

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Posted June 02 2010 - 04:54 AM


Quote:

Originally Posted by Brandon Conway 

Eh, the main draw is the original film. I'm sure they have the DVD sales figures to back this up.


True, but I'm sure I'm not alone in having bought the Kong collection on DVD that contained all three films. So any sales figures including it would show the potential interest in all the films.


I agree with others saying missed opportunity since the other films most likely will not get individual BR releases and I think the collection would get more overall interest from potential buyers.



#19 of 49 OFFLINE   Johnny Angell

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Posted June 02 2010 - 06:01 AM

I dug out my KK tin (two-disc collector's edition) and it appears all the extras on the blu-ray are identical to the DVD.  Something I hadn't noticed before, but there's no mention on the tin packaging of Peter Jackson's recreation of the spider pit sequence outside of the chapter "Mystery of the Lost Spider Pit Sequence."  Seeing how the list of extras is identical, I'm confident it's included in the blu-ray.


I know this is sacrilegious, but I wish they would provide the option via branching to watch the recreated spider pit sequence in the movie itself.


But I didn't see any mention of the extra's being in HD.  Will they?  I'm thinking not, which would be a shame.


BTW, the KK tin is one of my 2 favorite DVD packages (Forbidden Planet being the other).  It is just gorgeous.  I wouldn't have minded another KK tin.


I normally wait a couple months on new releases.  KK and the Alien release will be testing my will power later this year.


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#20 of 49 OFFLINE   Brandon Conway

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Posted June 02 2010 - 10:37 AM



Originally Posted by Johnny Angell 
But I didn't see any mention of the extra's being in HD.  Will they?  I'm thinking not, which would be a shame.


Warner essentially keeps the extras the same as they were on DVD when it's catalog bonus material. So, they'll more than likely be SD, either 480i or 480p.


"And now the reprimand, from an American critic. He reproaches me for using film as a sacred & lasting medium, like a painting or a book. He does not believe that filmmaking is an inferior art, but he believes, and quite rightly, that a reel goes quickly, that the public are looking above all for relaxation, that film is fragile and that it is pretentious to express the power of one's soul by such ephemeral and delicate means, that Charlie Chaplin's or Buster Keaton's first films can only be seen on very rare and badly spoiled prints. I add that the cinema is making daily progress and that eventually films that we consider marvelous today will soon be forgotten because of new dimensions & colour. This is true. But for 4 weeks this film [The Blood of a Poet] has been shown to audiences that have been so attentive, so eager & so warm, that I wonder after all there is not an anonymous public who are looking for more than relaxation in the cinema." - Jean Cocteau, 1932